“Warm Light in a Winter World”

“Warm Light in a Winter World”

“You think winter will never end, and then, when you don’t expect it, when you have almost forgotten it, warmth comes and a different light.” 
― Wendell Berry

Warm, merely describes the spectrum of the light, certainly not its effect on the surroundings.

Once more, this winter, I find myself drawn to the trails, despite the bone chilling -20C temperatures. Despite a few days above freezing, winter was swooped back and locked the world in its icy grip once more.

As I stood making this image, the trees around me were literally cracking as they rapidly cooled. I don’t have video capability here, but if you are interested in this experience, go to my https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Felehming%2Fvideos%2F10156194337614391%2F&show_text=0&width=267“>Facebook feed for a listen, it’s quite surreal.

Back to the photo, it was surprising to me that they late afternoon sun would have such a warm quality, as it reflected off the trees. If I had not experienced the actual temperatures, I would be mislead to believe it was actually warmer.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Winter’s Litter”

“Winter’s Litter”

“For so long I have lived on the edge of an invisible world. Sometimes I feel like the scattered debris left over after the personality has fallen out of the sky.” 
― Steve Rasnic Tem

This is my final 2017 photo, made during a VERY cold hike on the second last day of December. Temperatures were around -25C and the air was calm and crisp. Crisp is an understatement, it was brutally cold, especially when I stopped hiking to make a photo.

Something that really caught my attention was large patches of fallen oak leaves, lying on the firmly packed snow; winter’s litter. It’s one of those odd things that I have not witnessed in the past many years on the trails. I suppose some leave had simply hung on after our extended autumn and the extreme cold combined with some moderate wind has now knocked them down. As I stood here and looked up, there was no evidence of any leaves remaining. Winter is firmly entrenched now.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/500 sec, f/11.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Bleak?”

“Bleak?”

“Most misunderstandings in the world could be avoided if people would simply take the time to ask, “What else could this mean?” 
― Shannon L. Alder

I left the title as is, my first impression, but then, I looked deeper, at the bright orange beech leaves, the richness of the tree trunks, and the pale clean blue of the snow and realized, it’s not bleak at all.

Perception, is driven so much by experience and the stimuli present, at the moment. At the moment that I made the photo, I was standing in a winter forest, the temperature was hovering around -20C and delicate snow, like sparkling fairy dust, fell between the frozen limbs of the bare trees. So, now, as I consider this scene and reflect on my own words, that initial perception of bleakness, which many sojourners into the winter forest experience, is simply now true. if you look past first impressions, there is so much more.

In fact, as I consider that day and the 7 km hike a took, blazing trails though undisturbed snow, several parts of the forest were surprisingly alive with sound and motion. Within a hemlock grove, the air high above was filled with incredible birdsong, as hundreds of hungry chickadees flitted between limbs. The sound was indescribable and permeated the forest as I stood and soaked it in.

Ah, winter forests, not what they seem to be 🙂

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Potential”

“Potential”

“To focus solely on endings is to trade conclusions for the very beginnings that created them. And if this cycle should persist, we will likewise miss the beginning that will follow this ending.” 
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

This year concludes, as it began, with a simple image of a hemlock cone. This was not intentional on my part, it’s simply how things work sometimes. It’s a different tree, in a different forest, three hundred and sixty five days apart.

The year for me as a photographer, artist, father, husband, and human has been wonderful. As I look back on that photo from January the first of this year, I had no idea where life was taking me. I’ve grown in my skill and resolve on so many levels and that tiny seed seems an appropriate symbol to reflect on. This diminutive seed has the potential to become a massive and wonderful tree, if the elements are correct, producing seeds of its own. So, as the year concludes, or rather, cycles into the next, I look forward to the potential outcomes and many more experiences which add to my life.

See you all next year!

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/160 sec, f/6.3, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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There’s a Trail there, somewhere.

An icy hike, in -20 C temperatures, but glorious, nonetheless. I spend two hours breaking trail in this frigid wonderland. More images and thoughts to follow.

“A Frozen Tangle”

“A Frozen Tangle”

“Winters are a desolate time where all senses are wiped away, and here in Canada, this is especially true. All smells are sucked clean from the air, leaving only a harsh, icy crispness. Colours are stripped away, leaving a stark white landscape, a sky which stays black at night and gray in the day, a world of only three shades.”
― Rebecca McNutt

This is an image from yesterday’s hike in a nearby forest. Like the quote says, winter is reduced to three shades, with a hint of faded colour. This tangle of trees seems to say “Do Not Enter” as they fade into the distant, chilly darkness. Even the purity of the snow speaks unfriendly notes of warning as the forest is locked in a robe of ice.

It’s hard to imagine that mere months ago, I was swatting mosquitoes in this same spot as I photographed orchids along the trail. Though, I have to admit, I do like the change of seasons, as each reveals new aspects of the scenes before me.

I was going to say that yesterday’s hike, at minus seventeen degrees celsius was cold, which it was, but today dawned at a crisp minus twenty-seven, making me reconsider a hike today. It may be a sit back and read day.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com