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Posts Tagged ‘ice’

I don’t often shoot landscape images, but I was so taken with the stark beauty of the ice-covered world that I encountered on New Year’s Day at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge that I decided that I should attempt to capture a sense of the moment. I used the wide-angle capabilities of my Canon SX50 superzoom camera in the first two images below and shot the third one with the Tamron 150-600mm lens, the lens that I use on my Canon 50D for a significant number of my the photos featured on this blog.

icescape

icescape

icescape

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Early this morning, it was really cold and windy and most of the birds and animals showed great common sense in staying in sheltered spots. This little sparrow, however, seemed to be having a good time hopping, skipping, and skating across the frozen pond.

sparrow

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sparrow

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

 

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After several days of frigid temperatures, ice formed on the ponds at Huntley Meadows Park. Yesterday morning, it was finally above freezing and mist was rising from the ice, joining the low-hanging fog.

The sunlight was not strong enough to pierce the thick gray clouds and the winter landscape was almost monochromatic, filled with a sense of bleakness and desolation.

desolate_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

 

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The Washington D.C. area is virtually shut down today as we await a winter snowstorm—the federal and local government offices and schools are all closed. With a little extra time on my hands, I was able to go over some of my photos from Monday’s storm and thought I’d post a couple more images from that event, which covered all surfaces, including the pine trees, with a coating of ice.

I find there is a fragile, transitory beauty in these abstract images—an hour later, when the sun’s rays hit the ice, the effect was gone.

icy2_blogicy1_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I awoke yesterday to a world covered in ice, the aftermath of a storm of sleet and freezing rain. Peering out the sliding glass doors, I could see the branches of a pine tree bent over, heavy with the weight of the ice, and almost touching the boards of my backyard deck.

I took a number of shots as the morning sun started to melt the ice. Somehow I keep coming back to this almost abstract image of the pine needles. It’s definitely not my usual style of shooting, so it’s hard to explain why it appeals to me.

It’s probably a good thing to shoot things differently from time to time and try out unusual approaches. At a minimum, you’ll have fun and you may end up with crazy images that you like.

icy pine

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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According to the internet weather for my area, it is 8 degrees F outside right now and windy (minus 13 degrees C). Baby, it’s cold outside. We are forecast to get up to about 20 degrees F today (minus 7 C).

This is unusually cold weather for the Washington D.C. area, where winters are relatively mild. Earlier in the week we had a couple of inches of snow right at the morning rush hour and the roads were gridlocked for hours as commuters unfamiliar with the snow struggled to stay on the pavement.

The roads are treated now and mostly passable, but the cold makes even short outdoor trips barely tolerable. Earlier this month I took some shots of ice that had accumulated in the shady area of a stream at my local marshland park and one of those ice shots seem appropriate for today. I really like the way that the shapes and shades of the ice came out in this image, along with some of the bubbles in the water.

I have lots to do at work today—I sure hope my car starts in another hour or so.

ice1_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

 

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During this transitional time of the year there is often a thin coating of ice on the pond, especially when the temperature at night drops into the low 20’s F (-5 C).  On Friday morning, the ice was thick enough to support the weight of ducks most of the time, although the Canada Geese kept breaking through the ice when they tried to walk on it.

This female Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) started out strutting confidently across the ice, but stopped for a moment at a place where the water had accumulated. I couldn’t tell if she was assessing the condition of the ice or was merely admiring her reflection—she is quite a beautiful duck after all and perhaps ducks have a sense of vanity.

The male Mallard was more practical, remaining in the area of open water and foraging for food, content to leave the strutting and reflecting to his lady.

duck_walk_blogduck_reflect_blogmallard-male_nov_blog© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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