Tag Archives: light

“Shed”

“A common sight in the right light suddenly becomes beautiful.” – Ed Lehming

I’ve passed this shed countless times and it barely registers. It’s just an old shed along the road near my home. It’s commonplace and a bit weather-worn.

A few evenings ago, as we walked to a local restaurant for diner with friends the early evening light changed the entire appearance of the shed. It glowed in the soft evening light, becoming the focus of my attention.

Fortunately, I had my phone with me and was able to capture another beautiful moment in time.

“One Last Look”

“One Last Look”

“Nature’s gifts are always fleeting. These moments must be savoured while we can, and then the moment is gone, leaving only fond memories and dreams for tomorrow.” – Ed Lehming

Alas, the final days of the wake-robin are at hand. These flowers which have brought me so much joy this summer are fading fast, with only a few intact specimens remaining. What the sun has not dried and the wind and rain (and snow) have not pummeled, slugs have scarred.

I recall only ten days ago, seeing and photographing the first few blossoms to emerge on a rainy, sleet filled day. At the time, they were among the only blossoms brave enough to open on that cold spring day. But now, the sun is rising every higher and white trilliums dominate the landscape. I looked along the path for an intact flower, for one last photo, knowing that by tomorrow they will all be gone.

I’ve really enjoyed the wake-robins this year, more than others. They have been plentiful and I’ve been able to get good images through a combination of good fortune and getting down low to the ground with my tripod. The light has been exceptional, with a few slightly overcast days providing me ideal conditions. Today was quite a bit brighter but I was able to find this blossom on the edge of the shadows, just enough so that the image is not overly harsh. I also wanted to make sure that all the petals were in sharp focus, so I used a very narrow aperture, higher ISO, and slower shutter speed to get me what I was after.

So, here it is, the final blossom, so I can enjoy one last look.

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

1/100 sec, f/20.0, ISO 400

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

“Light and Shadow”

“Light and Shadow”

“The simple gift of light is all the more precious when in the presence of its companion, darkness.” – Ed Lehming 

This tulip blossom has provided me a few interesting images. Considering that the photo was made in early evening, with a room filled with light and simply setting my camera to expose to the brightest part of the flower. The background fades to a deep blue in strong contrast to the yellows and orange of the flower.

It’s that strong contrast that yields the best images, the ones that grab my attention and make me consider why this works so well.

I tend to compose my images intuitively. There are certain elements such as framing and focal point, but a lot of what ends up making the image good is not something I notice consciously when I compose. I simply know it works. It’s not till I sit down and edit the image that the subtleties begin to emerge and the photo tells a bigger story.

For example, when I framed the photo, I instinctively set the base of the blossom as my focal point, making sure it was properly exposed and then tried to get as much of the petal detail in focus while shooting hand-held, so hand movement had some effect as well.

What I did not notice as I composed the image was the almost echoe-like blossom in the background, out of focus and slightly in the shadows.. I also did not notice the interesting shadows inside the flower itself, nor the wonderful yellow brightness of the petals within.

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

1/250 sec, f/3.5, ISO 200

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

“A Distant Glow”

“A Distant Glow”

“Even in the darkness and the tangles of life, light seems to find its way to us.” – Ed Lehming 

This image was made in January, during a family vacation to Mexico. I was experimenting with my deliberate camera movement (DCM) technique using the jungle foliage as my subject. It’s a bit different than the forests in my area as the jungle is quite tight compared to the wider spaces of hardwood forests There are also less vertical elements and the light is so much different.

I got a lot of shots that just looked ‘blurry’ rather than painterly and most were significantly over or underexposed. After a few tries I had landed on the right settings and made a series of images that where interesting but nothing really ‘stuck’. However, this one particular image happened to catch the reflected light of the setting sun as a bright flash in the shadows.

The light was not something I particularly noticed as I made the image, which is often the case in these abstract shots. However, these elements seem to always be there and I must subconsciously detect them as I compose the image.

As I was looking for material to post, this particular image stood out, given the mood of the world today. People seem to be struggling with all the unknowns and navigate their way through these days of uncertainty. The little flash of light reminds me that all is not completely dark, if you deliberately look for the good things and focus on them. Suddenly, the tangle and darkness of our world offers some hope, and I’m personally encouraged by that.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 135mm
1/4 sec, f/10.0 ISO 400

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

“Enter March”

"Enter March"

“Enter March with caution, it may seem calm and quite but the month can surprise the unprepared with surprising fury, all is not as it seems in the moment. – Ed Lehming

It’s been quite a change since my last outing at the end of February. The snow remains, but warm and sunny days followed and the snow now lies deep and wet, and packed, making the trails easier to walk, without snowshoes, but very uneven.

The clouds and snow of February have been for now, replaced by sunshine and mild days. When I went out to make this photo I was wearing a sweatshirt and down-filled vest and ended up taking the vest off and rolling my sleeves up before I was halfway done.

These days offer beautiful light and last week’s snow still flows relatively pure and unbroken. A step off the trail and you are knee-deep in it, so the only disturbance to the snow is the occasional dog venturing off after a squirrel.

I do love these days, where the contrast of winter cold and snow against sunlit bright warm leaves is so noticable. It almost feels like the light of spring is breaking through. But I won’t be deceived, March can bring some ‘interesting’ weather as well and I’m fully prepared to don my toque and winter jacket a few more times before it’s done.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70 mm
1/4 sec, f/25, ISO 200

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

“February Light and Shadow”

“February Light and Shadow”

“The days of February’s end are unpredictable, often dull and snow filled. Yet, in the right conditions glimpses of spring light brighten the days.” – Ed Lehming

There is a certain magic in late February. A spring nears, the sun rises ever so slightly higher in the sky. Beams of warm light penetrate the forest, probing into what was just weeks ago a dull and shaded glade.

This warm sunshine lights up the formerly muted thickets, revealing wonderful greens and golds. It’s the splashes of brightness that I really enjoy. The way they seem to focus my attention on distant details that were shadows a few short weeks ago. The beams dance among the tree trunk, causing a glow that strongly contrasts with the shaded areas. It feels like an early sign of the life that will soon abound in the springtime forest.

In this image, those elements abound as the sun is able to light up the taller trees and short firs on this slight rise in the terraine. It’s like a beautiful cascade of light and colour rising from the snow covered ground.

And so, February passes away and March arrives.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70 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

“Life Goes On”

“Life Goes On”

“Nature is filled with cycles, as one thing passes from this world, another is ready to take its place. Each eager for it’s time in the sun”
– Ed Lehming

I find myself returning to this place frequently, primarily because of the stark contrasts i find here. The hillside is filled with several standing dead pine trees. By the bleached look of them and the deterioration of the bark, I’d say they have been dead for some time now. They stand in contrast to the rest of the lush vegetation that surrounds them eager to take their place.

At this particular time of year, the hillside is filled with young birches, their leaves turned a bright autumnal yellow. They seem so alive, even though we are well into fall. They seem even more vibrant as a backdrop to their deceased neighbours.

As my quote says, “Life Goes On”, the cycle of life continues, the weak and aged fade, but are not soon forgotten. some have broken or fallen down, and I will miss them when they are gone. This scene would not be the same without them.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 400

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

“Backlit in Golden Light”

“Backlit in Golden Light”

“Golden light beams forth from the hillsides behind the tall pines, competing with the sunshine at my side; a competition for my attention.”
– Ed Lehming 

This is a scene very typical of a local conservation area that I hike on a regular basis. Every visit I make offers some new scene of beauty that make me wonder if I had simply missed it on a prior passing.

There is something along this trail, which parallels a steep hillside that makes for some very unique scenes. I think it’s the layers of varied vegetation, that even in the summer, has more diverse textures and colours than surrounding forest. It’s also facing south, which provides nice lighting and contrast early in the day or late afternoon.

At this time of year, it’s quite spectacular when the distant birches and beeches light the hillside in golds and coppers, setting the background alight in strong contrast to the deep green pines along the trail.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 90 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 400

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

“Bright October Day”

“Bright October Day”

“Slowly and subtly , the colours of the world shifted. The bright greens of summer transformed to gold and copper, as the autumn breeze rustled in the tree tops high above. The warm glooming of the summer forest filled with a soft light that brought vigour to my spirit as I partook in the forest freshness.”
– Ed Lehming

I truly love autumn. Though it’s a time when the forest begins preparations for it’s winter slumber the freshness of the air, the smell of the leaves, and the bright colours are like a final feast for my senses.

Proximity to the local forests is a true benefit for me. After, or during a long day of work, even a few moments in the forest refreshes me and I’m grateful that I have the ability to bring some of those sensations back with me through my photography. Even after long pauses, a few minutes on the trails bring all my senses to life and inspires me to create.

Though the change is only just beginning and colours are not near peak, it was a delight to bask in the colours that were starting to show. With the canopy thinned, even slightly, light once more makes its way to the forest floor and everything seems to glow with life. I’m looking forward to more time in this place and hoping to bring back new autumn memories with the images I make.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 90 mm
1/4 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200

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