Archive for January, 2009

Texture in White

Posted in 1 on January 27, 2009 by ceceb3

So, my vast creativity has been stifled by the never-ceasing sense of irony that Mother Nature seems to foist toward New England. Acres of snow notwithstanding, I headed out into the sub-freezing wind on Saturday afternoon to capture the first light that the clouds have allowed to permeate to the ground all week. My procrastination from the time of realizing that the sun was at a great angle until the very moment that my boots hit the front porch, however, stymied my progress. Thus, I am left with an unexpected study of white and texture that, well, at least hasn’t turned brown yet. Yes, sorry folks, that is the best that I can come up with at this time. With another 12″ due in this week, my spirits have hit the type of low that is only found in the bleak mid-winter. And we still have February to go…!

However, I do find it interesting just how light can interact with forms of frozen water to give it properties that seem at once otherworldly and very terrestrial. Grey, blue, white – they are all in there, along with a physics lesson, I am sure.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All Rights Reserved

 

I turned to look back at my footsteps and noticed that the shadows added another layer of texture to the scene. More layers of light add more texture and more interest in some ways.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.

Lastly, as the wind was chasing me back to the truck, I noticed the intracacies of the light playing with both snow and ice and how different the interaction was for each, although so close to each other.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.

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Howling at the Moon

Posted in 1, Photography on January 19, 2009 by ceceb3

AAAAARRRRRROOOOOOOOO!

Any good excuse to howl at the moon is fine by me (and Oliver), and so driving toward home this past Monday night, the truck bathed in light from nose to tailgate, I was seriously inspired to try my hand at lunar photography. This is something that I have wanted to try for quite a while – I would especially like to capture a summer full moon over our pond – and now that I have some much needed equipment (thanks Mom and Eric!!) it was fun to research and experiment.

Some successful notes: Once I figured it out, the remote shutter trigger was great and kept my slipping in the snow from altering the focus in the photos. Being away from city lights helped to keep the moon bright. I found my manual focus was my friend, especially since the auto-focus could not decide on a layer for focus.

Some not-so-successful notes: I need a taller tripod – the one that I was using was super for angling for up-shots, but I would have liked to try something up higher. Clouds ended up obscuring the light of the moon because I had to spend about an hour figuring out how to use my remote and where to set up for the shots. I was really disappointed that I was not able to capture the moon that had attracted my howl, but give me another lunar cycle and I will try again!

Oh, and stay tuned for that moon-over-pond shot sometime this summer!

copyright 2009 C. Brotchie-Fine. All Rights Reserved
copyright 2009 C. Brotchie-Fine. All Rights Reserved

I like the angle and brightness of the moon in this photo above. I was unable to find an angle that was free of branches, so these all have a Halloween-aura about them.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.
Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.

I am not such a fan of the location of the moon in this photo compared to the first. However, I like the bright spot in the center.

Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.
Copyright 2009, C. Brotchie-Fine. All rights reserved.
I think that I like this best out of the three. The way that the moon hangs in the photo balances the dark of the branch that looks like it is almost holding the moon in the sky. This photo also had the longest exposure of them all, and I think that helped to make it crisper and make the light brighter.

Fire and Ice

Posted in Photography on January 11, 2009 by ceceb3

Here in New England folks do all sorts of wacky things to overcome the freezing boredom that winter can bring. To that end, the first ice fishers appeared on the pond behind our house this week .

Sigh. This is an activity that I have never understood – perhaps if they built shanties and were able to drive out onto the ice for a full day I could applaud their stamina and dedication. Alas, it is not so on our little pond. One the weekends, they tend to arrive around 9 am, parking in front of our house and waddling – practically swaddled in Carhart and wool – down the snow-slicked hill and onto the ice. Their warmth seems to be derrived from ‘liquid refreshment’ of various sorts and by tromping between the holes drilled through the ice. They stay for a few hours and then pack it on home. Few last past lunch time, and rarely have I seen anyone actually catch anything.

On weekdays, however, their evening presence is annouced by the paradoxical, orange crackle of a mini-bonfire on the center of the ice, a beacon through the dusk.  It is this concept of ‘Fire on Ice’ that sparked my inspiration this week. I had hoped that I would be able to catch a flaming remnant of the fishermen one evening, but it was no so. Therefore, I have extrapolated the theme into my photos this week. I chose to challenge myself with indoor work representing Fire – I greatly prefer to shoot outside, no matter the light. Then, capitalizing on the recent snow, I moved outside for Ice.

I found it very challenging to work with the light given by one candle, and ended up shooting without a flash of any form to achieve a softer light. The two Ice photos were certainly easier for me to shoot, but by using my zoom lens I was forced to move further away from the subject to achieve the focus that I intended. I am happy with the three photos shown below, albeit after several others that were certainly not qualified for posting, but there is always room for improvement.

 

Fire

 

Ice 1

 

Ice 2