Category Archives: Landscape

“Across the Bay”

“Water craft of all sizes float on the bay on a hazy summer afternoon” – Ed Lehming

The photo above was made while travelling across Picton Bay on the Glenora Ferry. The ferry transports vehicles and people from a dock at the eastern end of Prince Edward County to the mainland to the north.

It’s a very short trip of about five minutes but saves a long trip around the bay itself. For modern travellers, it’s a bit of a novelty and I always enjoy seeing the expressions on children’s faces when the ferry departs the dock and the cars are now transported across open water. It’s something not many would have experienced.

I also like the feeling for floating across the water in my vehicle and the trip offers a different perspective of the bay. In this case, there is a sailboat a few hundred meters away from the ferry and just behind it a large ‘laker’ transport ship heading to the local cement plant for a load. These ‘lakers’ are massive ships that transport goods from port to port in Ontario’s Great Lakes, thus the name. Many are also ocean going and make the long trek east on the St. Lawrence River, eventually entering the Atlantic Ocean.

For this image, I just liked the calm mood it invokes for me.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/6000 sec; f/1.8; ISO 2
5

“Deep Summer Greens”

Deep Summer Greens

“Within the swamps of Prince Edward County, layers of green draw me deeper and deeper as the light shimmers with summer’s heat. Despite days of endless heat and sunshine, the forest remains lush.” – Ed Lehming

As I spend time exploring the landscapes of my second home, it’s the swamps that fascinate me. The swamps are not deep oozing bogs; they are filled with wonderful swamp maples which thrive in this unique environment.

I still recall these wetlands from my first trip into this unique part of Ontario. After driving through rolling hills and farmland, the road passed through a large patch of deep lush swampland. Seeing large trees living in a swamp was unexpected. At first I though the land had been recently flooded but research taught me that this species of maple is able to survive and thrive in the shallow swamps.

The contrast of the healthy trees and layers upon layer of deep green and healthy vegetation is wonderful. Even this summer, with days upon days of high temperatures and drought, the swamps are still lush, seemingly impervious to the conditions.

The canopy is thin enough that wonderful golden light is able to reach deep between the foliage making for an unusually bright swamp. The undergrowth seems to invite you to enter but I imagine you would not get far without getting bogged down. It’s like nothing else I have ever experienced and I was happy for the opportunity to capture it ad render it as yet another piece of digital art.

“Better Days”

Better Days

“Long, hot summer days and quiet country roads yield surprises and raise questions, to the curious.” – Ed Lehming

There are many times when a drive down a backroad offers interesting sights. Most frequently I see an old abandoned building and wonder how it came to be in the state it’s in. I try to picture it when it was first built, envision a family starting a home. As a new house, it must have held so much promise.

Yet here, along the roadside of Ontario’s Prince Edward County, many years after that time, the house has fallen into severe disrepair, a mere curiosity, barely standing, along the roadside and a photo opportunity for me.

I decided to render this image as digital art, to add some mood and interest to the image.

“Drive Shed and Dames Rockets”

The whites, yellows, and pale purples of early spring begin to fade, yet purple holds on, larger and more brilliant than before.” – Ed Lehming

We have spent the past two weekends starting a fairly significant garden.

As we worked, tilled, and planted a scene that we simply could not ignore was the profusion of deep purple Dame’s Rockets. The literally surround the one-acre garden plot (we did not plant the whole acre). The Rockets a tall and lush and remind us that spring is soon to end, and the summer plants will take over.

The building I chose for the background is a drive shed, used to store tools and implements. It’s a wonderful, weatherworn structure with a tin roof. I have no idea what the little belfry is about. I don’t think it ever held a bell but was attached as a decoration. It does add interest.

I enjoyed the scene so much that I also rendered it as an impessionistic digital painting.

I find this is such a beautiful calming image. Though we were all tired from toiling in the field, scenes like this bring us joy and getting a garden going is very satisfying.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/1900 sec; f/1.8; ISO 20

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

“North Walker Woods Impressions”

“Words often fail to describe the feelings that our environment brings. How do I adequately share the joy of a spring forest? Art provides a medium to share my world.” – Ed Lehming

There are many time where I see a scene before me that is absolutely raw and emotionally beautiful. I try to share these scenes these scenes through my photographs, but there are times where even this is inadequate. In these cases, what I see and feel is best presented as more traditional art, in the form of a painting. Using software to create this ‘feel’ is generally a last resort as I struggle to pull life from a photo but the resulting image does not suffice. This is the primary reason I often create images with deliberate movement in them. The slight movement brings the scene to life and makes the eye spend more time considering what is being seen.

I really enjoy impressionist painting because of its ability to communicate a feeling through brush strokes, colour, and composition. My photos already offer the colour and composition but there is something in the brush strokes, a sense of depth, movement, and energy that a flat image just can’t do. Because impressionism resonates with me, I often find that converting my images into digital art gives me the satisfaction of elevating some of my images to a place a photograph sometimes can’t achieve. That was the case with this spring scene in Ontario’s North Walker Woods, a conservation area close to my home.

Here the spring forest is just starting to leaf out and the ground is filled with the white purity of trilliums. Presenting it as a digital painting brings out the soft serenity of the scene very nicely, in my opinion, and leaves me with something that was created by me, with a little bit of help.

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

1/200 sec, f/20.0, ISO 640
(Rendered with Topaz Impressions plug-in)

“Spring Glides In”

“Spring Glides In”

“Like a deep exhale, a flush of bright green, dotted with trilliums sweeps over the forest floor” – Ed Lehming

It’s a remarkable event to see unfold, even over the span of a few days. A mere two weeks ago snow was falling in the forest, the air was chill and only a few hearty plants poked from the cold ground.

Now the air has changed, the snow is a memory and the forest world is transformed. Around me trilliums flourish and fill the fill the scene as far as I can see. New growth emerges in the forest background as trees eagerly leaf out, creating a greenish mist between the limbs. It’s difficult to capture just how beautiful this is in a single still photo so I added some movement to bring some life to the scene and try to portray the feeling of this event.

Those who spend time in nature regularly will understand. There are things that are so difficult to convey accurately. The forest is not a still thing, it’s alive with movement and an energy that’s had to describe. I hope this image does that some justice.

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

1/4 sec, f/32, ISO 160

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

“Life and Colour Return”

“Life and Colour Return”

“Deep healthy greens and bright yellow now fill the spaces once dull and drab. Spring opens her mantle to the world in a flourish of health and brightness.” – Ed Lehming

A wonderful and much needed hike restored me once more. What started as a quest for trilliums offered so much more. The day was bright and warm; trilliums filled the forest floor like white beacons; the lime green flush of fresh Lily of the Valley, Clintonia, and Fiddle-heads stretched like a delicate carpet deep into the forest.

This is a time of year I love, there is freshness and new life everywhere, the light has changed as the sun rises higher in the sky each day. The growth is rapid, almost urgent, as each plant claims its place in the forest ecosystem. It’s also a time where ample light still finds its way between the developing canopy and fills the forest floor with light.

For this image I employed my favourite technique of deliberate camera movement. It brings out more colour and life through slight movement, far better than a simple static image. I can almost feel the energy of the forest in these images and they bring me such pleasure to produce. I find it draws me in and causes me to consider details I might otherwise overlook.

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

1/4 sec, f/25, ISO 250

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

“Spring Beckons”

“Spring Beckons”

“The days warm and forest paths call me into the depths of nature, I am home again.” – Ed Lehming 

The forest floor is now flush with green and visible life returns once more. Thought the trees are still bare I can see a fine haze od green and yellow high above me. It will be mere days till the canopy forms anew.

Narrow paths draw me forward to explore new places and my eyes see familiar things like Trout Lilies, Trilliums, and Lily of the Valley. Bright and healthy green with splashes of pink, yellow, and white blossoms stretch into the woods before me. This is like taking a fresh breath for me, it’s a balm for my spirit as I once more connect deeply with my beloved forest.

I have anticipated this “awakening” even more this year. With all the uncertainty in our world as we learn to deal with the evolving realities of  COVID-19, there is nothing uncertain about the forest and that offers me hope and encouragement, as well as a place where I can be with my thoughts and emotions and simply ‘be’. It’s a real blessing to have this so close to me.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/1600 sec; f/1.8; ISO 20

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

 

“Cable Cars and Monastery” – Montserrat, Spain

“Cablecars and Monastary” - Montserrat, Spain

“Travel far enough, you meet yourself.”
― David Mitchell

Since I’m quite limited in my travels these days, so I’m spending time enjoying memories of last year. I’m recalling vividly with each image the sights, sounds and aromas of the places I visited. In this case, my trip to Spain.

Yesterday I shared an image of Montserrat and the beautiful vistas it offered. That image is looking outward from the monastery high on the mountain’s slopes. Today’s image is looking upwards, towards the monastery, precariously perched on one of the cliffs and also showing the cable cars which transport you to that cliff.

As I stood waiting to board the next cable car, I could not help but imaging what it would have been like for the early monks to build the monastery in such a location. Just transporting materials would have been quite a challenge.

This was a strange day, as I have already noted. It varied between high cloud and brightness, which afforded me this photo, and torrential downpours. With this variability came thick patches for fog that clung to the hillside, often obscuring most of the buildings.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 185 mm
1/100 sec, f/5.0 ISO 400

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

“Montserrat Vista” – Muntanya de Montserrat, ⁨Spain⁩

“Montserrat Vista” - Muntanya de Montserrat, ⁨Spain

“Clouds define my mood today, but they are as temporary as sunshine and offer balance and perspective” – Ed Lehming

I have not posted anything for a few days, I’ve limited my social media activity and found myself drawn inward. It’s a very strange feeling lately, even for someone who tends to value solitude.

The trails I usually hike on are open to me, but I feel a sense of guilt driving to them. We’re told to stay at home except for necessities. I find myself reviewing photos from the past year, seeking inspiration, which eludes me. Each day blends into the next. My work keeps me occupied during the week but it’s monotonous and I seek something to focus on, a problem to solve, a process to improve, but that also requires inspiration.

The world has slowed down during this “Great Pause” as I am now calling it. The present and future are veiled in clouds. There is no clear direction and like being in a thick fog, my other senses reach out past what my eyes can’t see. I listen for some sound of clarity, the feel of something to hold onto, the scent of change, for something to pull me forward. But, the clouds persist.

The image I chose for today is from my trip to Spain late last summer. Of the twenty one days we spent in Spain, it rained only one day, the day we had chosen to visit Montserrat, just north of Barcelona. It was one of those days you simply can’t plan for anything for more than a few minutes, the kind of day that varies from a fine mist, brightening with a promise of sunlight to full downpour. This was the day we spent mainly outdoors on this spectacular mountain with its oddly shaped rocks and beautiful monastery.

We made the most of it and despite the rain and the mist I was able to make a few photos that showed the mountain and surrounding countryside nicely. I’m trying to do the same thing as we live through the current COVID-19 pandemic. I’m trying to grab hold of the moments of brightness as it offers itself because I don’t know when  the next downpour is coming or when the sun is finally going to break through, even though I know it will, eventually.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/1000 sec; f/1.8; ISO 20

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