Tag Archives: birch

“Stand”

“Stand”

“There is wonder in simplicity. Sometimes a mundane scene can offer more than first meets the eye.”
– Ed Lehming

Today I chose an image from last weekend’s hike along the York River. The small stand of bright birches against the deep green forest interested me. As with many of my photos, my initial perception is a simple composition, nice lines, and contrasts. Then, when I start actually processing the image, to get the colours closer to how I see them, wonderful and often surprising details emerge.

Behind the birches, the sunlight catches some balsam trunks and yields a wonderful golden light, a very subtle competition to the bright white of the birches. Some of that golden light appears on the birches as well, though it’s not something I was conscious of when I made the image.

So, a simple image of a stand of birches has become so much more.

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

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

“A Shift to Bronze”

“A Shift to Bronze”

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” 
― L. M. Montgomery

As I prepare for my 2018 Studio Tour, it gives me time to reflect on present photos, as well as those from previous years and I am astounded about how many have been printed, yet I have not taken the time to comment on them.

This image is one of those photos that for one reason or another was set aside. Interestingly, as I was preparing images for the Studio Tour, this one was chosen by three different individuals to be included.

The photo was made last autumn, a week after last year’s Tour. It was interesting, because the Tour weekend falls on the weekend after Canadian Thanksgiving, usually a peak period for autumn colours and I was slightly bemoaning the fact that I was missing out on this.

The day was cool, and windy, but the leaves were still hanging on quite well, despite this. Much of the predominant green and yellow was starting to fade and oranges, golds and bronzes were taking hold. It was the start of my “Golden Paths” series and has become one of my more powerful series of autumn images.

Here, I’m hiking past a familiar cluster of birch trees, with their yellow leaves just starting to wither and backfilled with the golden bronzes of the many beech trees. It really represents that ‘shift’ in colours so prominent at that particular time of year.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm
1/4 sec, f/32.0 ISO 100

“The Brightness of Birches”

“The Brightness of Birches”

“In this hour, I do not believe that any darkness will endure.” 
― J.R.R. Tolkien

As my journey through the September forests continued the forest and light varied significantly, this is the nature of forests in this area. This constant change offers many opportunities for photos, or simply to stand still for a few moments, enjoying the light playing through the leaves.

In small patches, birch trees brighten up the forest with their brilliant white bark. Tis makes them a bit of a challenge to photograph, as I have to balance their brightness with the darker forest behind. Here, the bright pale green leaves in the background made that balancing a lot simpler and yielded a rather nice image of the trees which conveys very well the ‘feel’ of this scene, not so many days ago.

As a said, this is part of a series of photos and I have begun to print them and hang them. So far, they seem to flow rather nicely in preparation for my 2018 Studio Tour.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm
1/4 sec, f/18.0 ISO 400

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

Tuesdays of Texture – “Silver Birch – Close Up”

“Silver Birch - Close Up”

“Beautiful is he who recognizes what is truly beautiful,
Even if the surface is ugly.
Truthful is he who says what is true,
Even if the truth is ugly.
Ugly is he who measures beauty by its exterior,
Without first weighing the interior.
And ugly is the man who judges harshly what he sees looking out,
Without first judging what he sees in the mirror
– Suzy Kassem

How often I pass by the trees along the way, briefly admiring the varieties and texture. Every now and then, I try to document them through my photos. This silver birch had a certain appeal for me, with its colours and curled bark, such wonderful details. I thought it to be a good submission for this week’s Tuesdays of Texture. It was this or more ice, which is plentiful, with more on the way 😦

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/100 sec, f/850, ISO 100

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

“Sunshine Grove” – Hermon, Ontario

“Sunshine Grove- Hermon, Ontario

“Rather than crying and  craving for those who left our path during dark moments of our life, let’s spend some time to thank those who stood and helped us to pass those dark paths.”
― Nehali Lalwani

This image was made on a somewhat foggy morning. As the fog dissipated I came across this scene. Amidst a damp low area, filled with spruce and hemlock, stands a small grove of silver birch. The sun streaming through the branches, lighting up the forest floor in glowing bands and reflecting off the shiny bark made it seem like a magical place. Literally, a light among the darkness. I sat here for quite some time, on the log in the foreground, just enjoying the light and sense of peace this place brought me.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
 @ 70 mm
1/120 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200

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

“Trailside Birch”

“Trailside Birch”

“You never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.”
― Tom Hiddleston

Ah, the weekend again and a nice time to get out and enjoy what autumn has to offer. As I went for a hike with my son we both noted that fall is a sensory banquet, filled with sights, sounds, smells and texture. We left taste to another time, though pumpkin pie did enter the conversation as a possibility.

I’ve hiked this train more times than I can remember, yet every time, it offers something new. At this point in the trail there is a small but wonderful grove of birch trees. Larger birches are spare in this area and usually not in well established groves. This one is right on the trail and grows on a gentle hillside, allowing ample sunlight to warm the roots. The rest of the forest in this section is largely maple and beech. It’s the beech leaves littering the forest floor that give it that beautiful coppery glow.

Something I have not tried here was a vertical pan, which I have been enjoying a lot lately. I made three images and chose this one as my favourite. There is a nice contrast between the greens and oranges against the bright blue sky, broken up by the white lines of the birches. To see another of this grove, please check my other image made here last year. Last year’s image offered a bit more leaf cover and more undergrowth.

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

High resolution image can be viewed on 500px

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

“Birch”

"Birch"

“I loved sitting on the pile of freshly cut logs, running my hands over the different shapes and smelling their woody fragrance. To this day I think that there is nothing as interesting to look at as a heap of newly cut logs, the delicate colouring of their veined insides telling their life story, while they wait to bring warmth and comfort.”
― Alice Taylor

A very simple title for a simple composition that caught my attention during a brief hike this week. There is something about the white birch bark and the orange leaves and cedar that make this “pop” for me. It was one of those images that I liked straight from the viewfinder and the composition was relatively simple, yet appealing.

Given the abundance of fungus on these logs, I don’t believe they would be appropriate for firewood, they simply make a nice photo.

Sadly, I’m also envisioning this image with a light dusting of snow, which we had last night. Fall is moving all too quickly to the inevitable winter, which does have its own beauty.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
 @ 200 mm
1/125 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200

High resolution image can be viewed on 500px

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

“Old Barn” at Fraser Lake Camp

“Old Barn” at Fraser Lake Camp

This photo was made last November at Fraser Lake Camp, near Fort Stewart, Ontario. It is a wonderful children’s camp, established some 60 years ago. The Old Barn is the only original building still standing on the property. It’s all log construction and sits at the edge of a field, surrounded by planted pine forest. I found this to be a wonderfully serene image, full of transitions. The lines of dark clouds are harbingers of the winter to come, yet grass still shows through. There is snw on the ground, but it would stay for long, as the meager sun warms the ground. There is also a shift from agriculture to native forest.

I have found several other buildings like this is the area, which was hoped to provide farming opportunity at one time, but the soil is just too shallow to support any sustainable farming. There are still a few operating farms, mostly livestock and hay.

It is interesting also to see gradual transition to native hardwoods, as can be seen to the left and right, with encroaching birch trees and poplars. The world is full of change, some rapid and some that can only be observed over years and decades.

Nikon D300
Nikor 70-300mm f/5.6 @ 70mm
1/160 sec @ f/8.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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or my website
http://www.edlehming.com

“Another Bend in the Path”

“Another Bend in the Path”

This photo is pretty much a summary of how autumn has played out for me. We have had an extended season, with mild weather, sunny skies, and leaves that seemed to cling to the trees for weeks, despite frosty nights, rain, and wind.

Unlike a typical fall, where I’m looking out the window, anxious to get out and make photos before the conditions fade, this year yielded day after glorious day of great light, incredible colour, and beautiful weather to just ‘be’ in nature.

The photo above was made on one of our abundant local trails at the Secord Conservation area. This trail system is incredibly variable and switches from cedar swamp, to meadow, to hardwood forest in the span of a few kilometers. There are a few patches of large birch trees, which is the case above. Here the bright white of the bark of the birches contrasts nicely against the oranges of the beech and oak trees againsts the dark backdrop of pine forest.

I titled it “Another Bend in the Path” because that is exactly what it is. Every bend, every rise in the path, yields wonderful new view.

There have been some interesting conversations lately about my subject matter. People seem shocked when I tell them these photos are local and not in some far off, remote, location. I hold to the notion that great images are everywhere, but you have to get out and move around to find them and be there when the light is right. Those who spend time in nature frequently will know what I mean. A frequently viewed grove of trees will suddenly glow with light, for a brief moment, the light will hit a patch of forest floor and reveal details you never noticed before, and then, the moment is gone, other than the memory . This awareness of the beauty, variability, and complexity of nature is my sanctuary. It’s a place and time where I can recharge, renew, and just ‘be’. The added bonus is that I can capture some of these moments and be able to share them with others, who may not be able to get out and experience it for themselves.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 70 mm
1/125 sec @ f/5.6 -.33, ISO 250

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

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming