Category Archives: black and white

“Guardian of the Stairs” – Aix-en-Thermes

“Guardian of the Stairs” - Aix-en-Thermes

Monochrome Monday
“Guardian of the Stairs” – Aix-aux-Thermes

As this month progresses and I get to finally reviewing and editing some of last years travel photos I’m finding myself leaning more towards mono images. They just seem to have more character and emotion to them.

Here, a local cat lounges at the base of  a set stone steps in the French town of Aix en Thermes, seemingly guarding the way. The photo essentially composed itself with the cat as the focal point and the gradients of the steps just adding interest and a bit of mystery as they rise and bend out of sight. I should note that I often consider shooting in mono and ensuring that I get enough tonal variety and contrast to make it interesting but end up reverting to the comfort zone of colour and switching to mono as I edit.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 17-50 mm F2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical IF A1N6II @ 48mm
1/160 sec, f/6.3, ISO 320

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

 

Thursday Doors – “Plaça del Raval” – Bagà, Españia

“Plaça del Raval” – Bagà, Españia

Thursday Doors – March 12, 2020
“Plaça del Raval” – Bagà, Españia

On a vacation trip late last summer I had the opportunity to travel through three countries in a single day: Spain, France, and Andorra. Along the way to France, tucked into the foothills of the Pyrenees, is the Catalonian village of Bajà. This was my first real venture away from the bustle of Barcelona and this beautiful little town of some 2,000 people had a wonderful medieval feel to it with its narrow winding streets and old stone structures.

Along the main street I came across this simple door. The light and textures were just irresistible and I found it translated even better as a mono image. I do not have an exact address and Google Street View does not travel down this narrow roadway, so I can’t give exact coordinates but it’s just west of the Plaça del Catalunya, if you are ever in the area.

The other thing that struck me, but unfortunately did not work well within the composition, though I hoped it would, was the prevalence of Catalonian independence flags flying from nearly every window. The deeper you travel into north-east Spain the more noticeable the Catalonian movement for independence is, with flags and banners everywhere in the region with its very own culture and language.

I plan on sharing more of that experience in subsequent posts.

 

“Shadow Play in the March Forest”

“Shadow Play in the March Forest”

“Light and shadow compete in the changing light just as the warm and cool air swirls within the March forest, each seeking dominion at this time of transition.” – Ed Lehming

For this image I set out to try something very different from my usual style. First of all, I shot the image in mono, getting the light and shadow to balance just right after several failed attempts. Second, I shot a forest scene in landscape orientation while still moving my camera to get the slight sense of motion that I like so much.

As the image came together I was quite pleased in how it realized so close to what I had envisioned. It brought forth a forest still snow-bound, yet somehow alive and filled with energy. The flow of the snow on the gently sloped ground further enhanced this feeling of life, or motion. The trees don’t feel static either, they seem to flow into each other and are accented by the light reflecting from the fine branches that weave and wind between them.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70 mm
1/4 sec, f/29, 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

Monochrome Mondays | Week 19, 2017

“Silence”

“Silence”

“The sea is emotion incarnate. It loves, hates, and weeps. It defies all attempts to capture it with words and rejects all shackles. No matter what you say about it, there is always that which you can’t.”
― Christopher Paolini

I find myself constantly going back to my time with the whales of the Baja. It was a deeply emotional time. As the associated quote states so well, there are so many things about this experience that defy language. Leaving me in silent reflection.

To see these beautiful creatures, in their natural habitat, rising gently from the depths and gliding next to our boat ,with virtually no sound except a gentle bubbling of the water, was a profound and life changing experience for me. The photos, while making great memories, pale in comparison to the actual experience, the combination of sensory perceptions of sight, sound, and smell are needed; even that is hard to articulate. There is a spiritual sense here, among the giants of the deep that defies expression.

So, I joyfully go back to the images and allow them to rekindle those emotions, once more placing in on the surface of the Sea of Cortez, sharing a brief moment in time with these magnificent animals, and silence prevails.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 220 mm
1/400 sec, f/10.0 ISO 200

Monochrome Mondays

“Steeple” - Reformed Church of Stone Arabia, NY

“Steeple” – Reformed Church of Stone Arabia, NY

Here we are in May and with the profusion of wildflowers, I find myself lacking in any recent mono images. So, I’m back to the 2015 archives and an ancestry trip to the Mohawk Valley, in New York State, where my family originally settled after arriving from Germany in 1710. They came to America seeking a new life after escaping war and famine in the Palatine region of Germany.

When some of the natives of the Mohawk Valley saw the poor condition of the immigrants, they welcomed them to come to the Mohawk Valley to settle. The relationship between the Mohawks and the settlers was one of mutual trust and respect.

One of the first things these early settlers did was erect churches, few of which survive today because they were destroyed during the multiple wars and raids that occurred in this strategically valuable area.

When I arrived in Stone Arabia, searching for family roots, I came immediately across this church building, whose name I recognised from family records as being the church that was constructed by my ancestors and was their place of worship for many years. Despite wars like the French Indian War and the American Revolution, this building survived.

I made many images of it but this one of the steeple, with the churning clouds seemed to represent the history of this place the best.

Nikon D300
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 105mm
1/320 sec, f/9.0, ISO 250

Monochrome Mondays

“Spring Thaw on Duffins Creek” - Whitevale

“Spring Thaw on Duffins Creek” – Whitevale

“Water does not resist. Water flows. When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress. Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you. But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it.”
― Margaret Atwood

I have a love for water, especially moving water, and there is plenty of that this time of year. The snow and ice are finally gone and the remaining frost is slowly melting underground, raising the water tables and making streams swell.

So, I decided to make this image black and white. It makes the image a bit ‘crunchier’ than I like but still shows the movement nicely.

Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1.0sec, f/40.0, ISO 200

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