Posts Tagged: sun
At craft sales, I always have tags on the back of my photos with a title and short description. People seem to enjoy this, but sometimes a short tag is not enough. This photo, for instance, is only partially explained by the tag which says “Oilfield Remains”. So I often get questions, and I try to explain, but usually fail miserably. Well, here’s my (hopefully successful) explanation of the photo.
The story starts with me and Jason driving around the countryside finding nice things to take pictures of. This is a fairly common occurance in the life of a nature photographer. Oil rigs are also a fairly common occurance around Edmonton, so the two often coincide. We found this lovely oil rig just as the sun was setting, and of course I took the standard oil-rig-sunset shot which is the same as twenty billion other oil-rig-sunset shots. But hey, it gives me some context for the story.
Getting good photos means investigating things a little more, and while we’re wandering around the rig, we find (among other things) these random pieces of pipe on the ground. Rusty texture and curved lines catch my eye, and soon I’m down on the ground taking photos of this pipe elbow.
Well, in this photo there’s a bit too much going on for there to be a clear focal point, and the lines aren’t leading where they need to be leading. So I got a little closer, focused into the pipe, and took the photo you see at the top.
Warm sun and cool breeze: a beautiful fall day. The wind had matted the grass into interesting patterns in some places.
This was taken before all the snow hit. Looking out my window now, from the 12th floor, I can only see a couple blocks before the deluge of falling snow obscures everything. This snow would actually be perfect weather for photography but I really need to get winter tires on the van before I feel comfortable driving out to a natural area.
I’ve got a new series up on the LCT Gallery website titled “Into the Sun”. I’ll post a teaser here, but check out the website to see the whole series. Also check out the other galleries (sorry, can’t link to them directly) from Aaron Pedersen and David Bloom – completely different, but both of them are really well done!
A couple weeks ago I was out at Clifford E Lee Wildlife Sanctuary. It was dreadfully cold and winter depression had set in. I walked around for a while, not really inspired—just trying to soak in enough sun to stay sane. I hardly even looked through my photos when I got back. Today I was going through them and found this:
Fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium) has provided me with so much color and so many great curvy lines to work with that I feel compelled to do a bit of a tribute to fireweed.
Here’s a warm sunrise from Barbados. I suggest ignoring the frost on your windows and the snowstorm outside, and for just a few short moments drinking in the sunlight streaming through your monitor from this tropical isle.
I was going through some photos from our Barbados trip trying to stay warm and secure in the belief that there is a sun and it is warm.
Often sunrises and sunsets are the best light. This light is more unusual, so it adds interest to a scene, as long as the light is not competing with other elements of your composition. I often feel like sunrises or sunsets are bandages though – something to fix an otherwise boring scene. So if you’re taking a photo of a sunrise or sunset, make sure you consider the composition as well, and what makes the foreground interesting.
“You got lucky and have a couple good photos. I imagine everyone has a few great pictures on their computer.” These were the words spoken to me today by a “photographer” who saw me selling prints at Folk Fest. It was interesting to hear, and I agreed with him. After all, it is true that many people have a few great photos; it is also true that I occasionally get lucky while taking photos. But I think he was implying that photographers (maybe nature photographers specifically) don’t have control over the quality of their photos. And that is completely false.
I don’t control the weather, the sun, the way the trees grow, or the layout of the mountains. This is the challenge of nature photography – adapting to the environment, finding strong compositions, waiting for or creating the right light. It’s about working with what is there to create a mood, a story, a little world within a frame. This takes a great deal of practice and skill, along with some experimenting. But there’s always a little luck involved.
These are from the Moss Lake trail in Elk Island National Park last night between 10 and midnight. It was overcast and a new moon so – pretty dark. (For what it’s worth, I was trying to create my own luck and time my visit right to catch the perseid meteor shower. As it turns out I had to work with an overcast sky, so I got these instead)