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Posts Tagged ‘trees’

With the recent onset of cold and rainy weather here in Paris, it is hard to remember that we had a bit of sunshine earlier in the week. As I was walking along the banks of the Seine River during one such sunny period, I grew entranced by the shadows that trees were casting onto the embankment walls. People passing by me must have wondered what I was photographing, given that I was facing a seemingly blank wall and had my back to the river.

The images show mostly skeletal tree forms, but some show evidence of hardy leaves persistently clinging to the branches, not yet ready to fall. If you examine the photos carefully, you can see some of the details and textures of the materials used to build these embankments. Just a few yards above, there is busy world, full of cars and people hurrying about, but here, life moves at a slower pace.

I love too seeing the giant iron rings intermittently embedded in the embankment walls.  These, I believe, are a legacy of past commerce along this river, places where barges would tie up, perhaps for safety or sleep, or simply to silently surveil the scenic surroundings. There are times in our lives when we could all use spots like that.

shadow tree

Shadow Trees on Seine River

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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The early morning sunlight was spectacular yesterday as it streamed through the trees at Huntley Meadows Park. I tried to capture this phenomenon as a kind of mini-landscape by using my telephoto lens and framing it just as you see in this image. It is a little unusual for me not to crop an image at all, but by composing it this way, I was able to include those elements that I found the most interesting, the light and shadows of the trees, and left out the things that I found less interesting such as the sky. I did include a little strip of grass in the foreground so that the image is not completely abstract.

early morning trees

When I first arrived at the park, the sun had barely risen and there was a lot of ground fog, which made the woods look really mysterious and a little spooky. One of my viewers on Facebook said the image looked like it could be the setting for the witches in Macbeth. The second image was a lot tougher to capture, because of the lack of light and my desire to capture a sense of the fog that was clinging to the ground. There is a slight blur to the image, which would normally be a shortcoming in a photo, but I think it works ok with an image like this one.

early morning trees

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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The skeletal forms of trees remain hidden during much of the year, but winter reveals them in all of their naked glory. Without the distractingly bright colors of leaves, it is easy during the cold season to become entranced by the delightful contours and textures of the trees and the unusual growths that protrude from their bark.

As I get older, it seems that I too am developing protrusions and discolorations, but I tend to keep them hidden under layers of clothing, especially during the winter.

natural growth

natural growth

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Blossoming trees get a lot of attention this time of year, but as I looked upward at the trees in my neighborhood, I was struck by the beauty of the seeds of what I believe are maple trees. When I was a child in New England, I loved to watch these seed spinning through the air like little helicopters as they fell from the maple trees.

According to Wikipedia, the US Army actually developed a special air drop supply carrier during World War II that could carry up to 65 pounds of supplies and was based on the maple seed.

It was fun trying to come up with different ways to highlight the beauty of these seeds by moving closer or farther away and by varying the background.

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© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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In the marshland park where I spend a lot of time shooting photographs, there is a small, shallow pond accessible only by an unimproved trail through the woods. It’s really peaceful there. At times there are ducks there or an occasional heron or deer, but usually it’s just me and the trees and the wind and the water. How do you capture that sense of tranquility in a photo? Here’s a modest attempt to do so.

Reflections

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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