Monthly Archives: October 2015

“28th Sideline Fall Beauty”

28th Sideline Fall Beauty

This has been a beautiful autumn. Generally, by this time of the year, the leaves are down and it’s hinting at the winter to come. It has made photographing fall colors a real pleasure. Bright reds and oranges are everywhere with a nice mix of yellows and some splashes of green, from plants less susceptible to frost.

The photo above was made along the 28th Sideline, in North Pickering, Ontario. The old maple trees here create a wonderful canopy over the road and there is not much traffic. The road itself is in the heart of expropriated lands destined, at one time, to become the new Pickering Airport. Those plans seem to have been put on the back-burner and some lands have been designated parkland. These lands, still full of fertile farmland, have fallen into disrepair, with a few farmhouses scattered across the vast acreage. Fields are still actively worked, but it has lost the feel of a once vibrant farm community.

The one gain in this situation is that there is a lot of land that has not been absorbed in urban sprawl and large expanses of rural wilderness can still be experienced here. I go to this spot every year, and it remains largely unchanged. A fun fact for me is that the eastern tree line (on the left side of the photo) is the eastern limit of the farm my mother-in-law grew up on. I’m sure she and her brothers played in these trees at some time.

Nikon D300
Tamron 18-50mm f/2.8 @ 36mm
1/125 sec @ f/5.6, ISO 100

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“The Unexpected” – Poplar Leaf on Log

I’ll admit to it.  I’m often looking for images to use as wallpapers for my desktop.  I guess I have a bit of desktop ADD.  I don’t like looking at the same images over and over and am always looking for something new and close to me.  There are many times where I see a suitable subject and photograph it, with the sole intention of creating a desktop wallpaper for myself.

This past week I went for a walk along my favourite local hiking trail and the poplars were just dropping their leaves after a hard frost.  There were a few ‘interesting’ leaves laying on the trail and a few stuck to logs along the way.  I stopped to make photos of a many of them.

I liked the composition of this particular image and began to process it, only to be totally surprised at all the colours present in the fallen leaf.  Really, there is purple and fuschia in this? I was seeing only the greens and yellows when I made the image. Nature is truly amazing, especially when you take the time to look closer.

I consider myself as an observer, but every now and then, the unexpected shows itself, as in this photo. I challenge all of you to get out there and observe. New perspective are in store and your assumptions of what is considered obvious, may be challenged.


Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @185mm
1/50 sec @ f.\3.5 -0.33. ISO 250

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“Golden Poplars”

“Golden Poplars” - Secord Conservation Area

One of the wonders of photography, that I have noted before, is the fact that I can walk past a scene dozens of times and nothing ‘grabs’ me. In this case, there is a nice stand of poplars along one of my favourite hiking trails. I’ve photographed it many times and the results were “average”. I knew it had potential for a great photo, but conditions and lighting were never quite right to capture the photo I envisioned.

That was not the case last Sunday. On this particular hike, all the elements came together; the light, the colour of the leaves, the reflection of the bark, as well as the angle I was photographing from.

I carefully framed the shot to match my vision of the image, checked and double checked my camera setting, and made one single photograph ( a big risk there). I deliberately underexposed it, since I knew the tree bark could blow out some sections (I learned this through previous attempts).

When I got home and downloaded the images from my camera, I knew I had what I’ve been seeking. With only minor adjustments to compensate for the under exposure and a bit of sharpening, the image above emerged. It was all I had dreamt of. I also printed it as a 12×18 print and it now hangs proudly in my home gallery, where I can enjoy it as I work. I hope you enjoy it too!

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 70mm
1/80 sec@ f/4.5 -0.33, ISO 250

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“Walk Among the Birches”

“Walk Among the Birches”

It’s fall. Time for me to get out into the woods and just enjoy being there. It’s been a late fall here and the temperature is still mild, considering the time of year. We’ve been visited by a few flurries and light frosts till last night. The colours are spectacular and trees slow to shed their leaves. Essentially, ideal fall conditions for photography and just enjoying nature, in all its glory.

I took a lunchtime stroll today and was surprised at how much colour was still present, despite our first real hard frost last night. I noticed a lot of leaves coming down and figured this might be my last chance to capture and share this beauty.

One of my go-to places is the local Secord Conservation area, just south of Uxbridge, Ontario. The trail winds its way through variable southern Ontario forest. Through groves of oak, maple, poplar, maple, cedar and spruce. There are meadows and swamps, high ridges and rolling hills. The Oak Ridges Trail Association does an amazing job at maintaining these trails, which I enjoy in all seasons.

I could not resist photographing this stand of birch trees next to the golden leaf-covered trail. The sun was bright with interspersed clouds, which made for great lighting conditions. I hope you enjoy my view of this walk as much as I do. More to come.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 f/2.8 @ 75mm
1/160 sec @ f/6.3 -0.33, ISO 250

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