Monthly Archives: February 2020

“Familiar Paths”

“Familiar Paths”

“Familiar paths beckon us forward. Though familiar, there is always something new or changed, if we take the time to notice.” – Ed Lehming

I find myself on the same trails many times. Often I wonder what more they can offer me as I set out. Every time, there is something new. It may be that I have come at a different time of day and the light has changed. It may be a different time of year and new plants spring up that did not exist, or went unnoticed, last time I passed by.

What I have discovered in this familiarity is that even subtle changes are quickly noticeable.

I’ve had people bemoan the fact that they live in an area that does not have much subject matter to make beautiful photos, when in fact, it’s simply that they aren’t looking closely enough. Even the most barren of places has something to offer.

In the case of this image, I have made many photos of it, in various seasons and weather conditions. Like this example from less than a year ago.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 90 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Snow and Sunshine”

“Snow and Sunshine”

“There are a few precious days in February when hints of spring float in the air.” – Ed Lehming

I’m continuing with a series of photos I made last weekend while hiking local trails. These are the final few days of February and I was glad to have two wonderfully mild and bright days to be on the trails.

As I mentioned earlier, I had a repeat injury to my knee which has kept me off the uneven and often icy trails since December. So to be back out in such ideal conditions makes it doubly nice.

The dark days of winter are passing behind us and the sun is getting higher in the sky each day. I find it has a beautiful warmth this time of year and sheds just enough light to bring out the highlights in the otherwise dull forest. It’s these patches of light that I am so fond off because they draw my attention into distant details that I might otherwise miss.

When composing this image, my primary intent was to capture vertical lines of the trees in the foreground contrasting with the horizontal movement of the snow and long shadows around them. However, there are a few ‘pops’ of golden light in the background that pull you deeper into the image and scan the tangle of trees along the distant hillside.

It’s the continuous realization of these scenes that has me coming back to the forest time and time again. It’s never the same twice and there is always some new revelation for me to enjoy.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 90 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Afloat in February Snows”

“Afloat in February Snows”

“Floating in a soft sea of snow, the forest weathers the drifting tide of whiteness that surrounds them.” – Ed Lehming

As I composed this image I was struck by the illusion of movement in the snow as it followed the contours of the forest floor. By adding just a bit more movement than I normally do, the illusion is enhanced further and the snow takes on the appearance of  soft liquid waves or fine mist. My technique to achieve these slightly blurred images is the result of a lot of trial and error and now muscle memory. So to do something like, with no change to my camera settings, is a bit uncomfortable and unpredictable.

It’s a bit out of the ordinary, but sometimes I like to follow a creative thread to see where it leads me. In this case, I am quite pleased with the result of changing my technique, ever so slightly, to take me to something altogether unexpected.

I also switched back to my favourite Tamron 70-200 mm lens which enables me to compose the image as I shoot rather than cropping on the computer. I try to limit my edits to just a few fine adjustments.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 110 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Sugar Shack” East Lake, PEC

“Sugar Shack, East Lake PEC”

“You can feel it in the air and in memories of the past. Despite the snow and wind, a hint of spring and the coming spring rite of maple syrup whispers at our thoughts.” – Ed Lehming

On a recent trip to Ontario’s Prince Edward County, I was drawn to this peaceful scene of a sugar shack nestled in the woods that I spotted across a farm field and knew I had to make a photo of it.

In my mind, I already had the composition I wanted and it took only a handful of shots before I had something I could work with. What I had not figured out was how to most effectively present the image. As I reviewed the image on my computer and imagined a few different outcomes, I settled on a simple black and white version. It seems to work  well, because even now, as I look at it, I can almost see the steam billowing from the roof vents as maple syrup production starts up in the coming weeks. A sure sign of spring.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 200 mm
1/400 sec, f/10.0 ISO 500

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Pastel Pathways”

“Pastel Pathways”

“The surprises light offers are endless” – Ed Lehming

Today’s image has a direct connection to the one I posted yesterday. Namely, the interesting colours that winter can offer.

This is the first image I made as I embarked on a 6 km hike at a local conservation area. I used my standard camera setting for my deliberate camera movement pans, but this image was slightly overexposed. I would normally have deleted this image immediately but decided to keep it. As I brought the image up on my computer, I was surprised by the variety of wonderful pastel colours present within the image. I decided to leave the image exactly as it came from the camera to share this effect. What really amazed me was the amount of pale purple present in the image. It’s not something my eye picked up on as I composed it.

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

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Winter Wanderings”

“Winter Wanderings”

“Winter is not all bleak and gray, if you look closely, subtle colours abound in the most wonderful places” – Ed Lehming

Well, after a long hiatus, I have returned to my photography and writing.

Last year was ‘disruptive’ at best. Too many changes came at me too quickly and left me overwhelmed and uninspired. I was ‘retired’ from work briefly and It took me some time to come to terms with the new environment thrust upon me. I’m still coming to terms with this new reality.

I did continue to get out and make photos and posted a few along the way. Autumn yielded some stunning shots and I had intended to get back to a more regular cadence of photos and posts till a simple household activity re-injured my MCL and left me unable to venture onto the trails I love so much.

Without my hikes, which are my time to relax and renew, I found myself completely uninspired. I did get the occasional imagine in as the winter wore on, but I fell into a bit of a creative funk.

As winter wore on, my knee continued to heal and today I felt it was strong enough for me to hit the trails again. Today was a beautiful late February day, filled with bright sunshine, mild temperatures, and the blessing of birdsong. The trails were snowcovered and packed down but not icy. A perfect day to begin again. I found the forest welcoming me once more with beautiful compositions and a surprising variety of subtle colours, which inspired this image, made looking forward as I walked along the trail.

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

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com