Tag Archives: perspective

“Sideways Glance”

“Sideways Glance”

“One clear moment, one of trance
One missed step, one perfect dance
One missed shot, one and only chance
Life is all…but one fleeting glance.”
― Sanober Khan

Being literally surrounded by trilliums poses a challenge: they all look so lovely and so perfect. How do you present them differently. It’s so tempting when composing shots to photograph them straight on or slightly off-centre. They are just so lovely. There are literally thousands of opportunities for a nice photo and I was not about to shoot dozens of images to sort through.

I just happened to catch the movement of a squirrel behind me, as I looked over my shoulder I spotted this blossom, slightly shaded and in profile. It was, just like it’s multitude of companions at this time of the year, perfectly and wonderfully formed, without blemish.

A bit of sunlight lit up the base of the flower and created a bit of shadow on the veins. After a quick setup, I had my image. Not typical, but I like how it turned out, all from a sideways glance.

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

1/180 sec, f/4.0, ISO 200

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

“Soon…”

“Soon...”

“In nature, all things come in their prescribed time. Nature delays deliberately, without explanation. In time, we see the reasons and they seem obvious.” – Ed Lehming

I think my perspective this spring is highly influenced by the current global COVID-19 pandemic. I live in Ontario, Canada and our provincial flower is the trillium, so I’m seeing a great analogy to the province ‘opening up’ the economy.

There are lots of trilliums along the trails right now, but they are mostly tightly bundled in their leaves, waiting for the conditions to be right to safely open as well. We can learn a lot from nature. Rather than rush into things, some caution is required or there is a risk of permanent damage. For trilliums, it’s frost damage, for our society, it’s many more months of lockdown or outright quarantine and unnecessary illness or deaths.

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

1/20 sec, f/20.0, ISO 400

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

“Fragile”

“Fragile”

“Human spirit is the ability to face the uncertainty of the future with curiosity and optimism. It is the belief that problems can be solved, differences resolved. It is a type of confidence. And it is fragile.”
― Bernard Beckett

As I observed these dried beech leaves a few days ago I saw many allusions to my current state of emotional well-being and my pursuit of calm and hope. There have been days recently when I have felt dried out, bereft of joy, and just waiting for the next message of bad news to push me to the brink. I’ve felt like curling up and hoping this all passes me by, trembling in the wind.

Yet, at the same time I realize just how tenacious these leaves can be. They cling to the branches all winter long as other leaves have long since fallen to the litter of the forest floor. I’ve previously commented on how the beech leaves are bright and colourful beacons of cheer in the otherwise dull, gray winter landscape.

It’s about perspective, I suppose; a matter of directing my thoughts to the positive and the belief that we as humans are able, resilient, and fully capable of solving this most recent problem. I need to remain confident and focus on the image of tenacity rather than fragility. I also know that these wonderful leaves will soon fall as well, but released by new growth rather than death, a continuing cycle of ebbs and flows; a balance. It’s all about how we look at it.

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

1/200 sec, f/7.1, 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

“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

“Simply Delightful”

“Simply Delightful”

“When you can take pleasure in the simple beauty life offers, then you are truly blessed.”
– Ed Lehming

Often, even the most mundane things draw my attention. Though I have stood on rugged vistas and surveyed sights that have left me in awe and speechless I’m still fascinated with the very simple beauty of my everyday surroundings.

In this case, a single small red berry hangs from a vine in the sunshine in early spring. A drop of dew clings tenaciously to it, further enhancing the feeling of freshness. The isolation of this single berry, the last one remaining on the vine is in such contrast to the dull gray world around it.

In the background, the world is awakening from its winter slumber, colour slowly returning, yet traces of snow remain to remind us that winter is not such a distant memory.

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

1/60sec, f/4.0, ISO 200 

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

“Brightness in the Squall”

“Brightness in the Squall”

“The difference between darkness and brightness is how you thrive on those moments and how you use such circumstances with goodwill in your spirit.” 
― Angelica Hopes

I find myself, on this day in early March, wondering where time has gone. It’s been many weeks since I felt inspired to sit and write. I’ve been out making photos, but the days have been cold, dull, and largely uninspiring.

Today, I set forth to spend some time in nature and see what she had to say to me, among the trees. And, once more, I found myself alone on the trails, the solitude and quite refreshing me. The only sounds I heard were the crunching of my boots in the crisp snow and the gentle breeze among the branches.

I’d only gotten a few minutes into my hike when light snow began to float down around me, further quieting the world around me. The sparse snow soon built into a full squall by the time I got further along the trail, refreshing the scenery and sticking to the thin branches along the trail.

Through this curtain of white, the occasional shimmer of bright colour flashed life into the winter world. The dried leaves of the beech trees, which hold fast throughout the winter, were like orange flames dancing in the dark branches. One that really stood out for me is pictured above. The thin beech tree appears to adorn the large maple behind it with it wonderful leaves, to the point where you hardly notice the beech and are fooled, without closer inspection, to believe the colour belongs to the maple.

It’s moments like this, where I simply need to pause and enjoy the scenes before me that continue to draw me outdoors, regardless of the weather.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 100 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

“Boundaries”


“Like most boundaries, they have two aspects. What is inside it and what is outside, it all depends upon which side you are on”
– Ed Lehming

I’m still in retrospect mode, moving through photos I made last year, considering the thinking behind their creation and the feelings I was experiencing when I made them.

Much of this is influenced by the world around me, though I try my utmost to detach from the negatives constantly bombarding us these days. One of the themes that was inescapable is the concept of boundaries, both physical and conceptual. A boundary is a point of separation, some boundaries have a transition zone and others are abrupt, often driven by the intent of the boundary.

In the case of this photo, the boundary between winter and autumn is quite abrupt, which is what made me stop to consider what I was seeing. The entire autumn in my area has been highly changeable, transitioning from snow, to rain, to sunshine, with snow never remaining on the ground for more than a few days. This also meant that any snowfall was temporary, at best. Here, the shade of the pine trees shelters a section of snow, creating a very defined boundary.

As I made the image, the thought about the nature of boundaries began to form. After all, if I stand on the boundary and look one way, I’m greeted with a snow filled and wintry view. Yet, if I remain in the same spot and turn around, it’s a late autumn day. If I did not have the benefit of seeing the whole picture, I could assume it is one season, when it is not. So, the boundary is, like I noted in my quote, really dependent on which side you are on and which way you are looking. It’s a concept I would like to continue to build on over the next few months.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 92 mm
1/4 sec, f/16.0 ISO 400

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

Iceland Journal – “Kirkjufellsfosser, Front View” – Snæfellsnes Peninsula, West Island

“It’s not about inviting great things into our lives. Rather, it’s about accepting the invitation of great things to step out of our lives.” 
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

For those following my Iceland journey from late October, you will know that it was made up of a series of ‘general’ destinations. We simply set up a schedule to take us from one overnight stop to the next, leaving time between those destinations to enjoy the journey along the way. This meant roughly two to three hours of daily driving and we never had a particular ‘sight’ as a destination. We allowed each day to simply ‘happen’.

The only exception to this ‘plan’ was Kirkjufellsfosser, which I addressed on a prior post, which includes a photo of this iconic waterfall which appears on almost every Iceland travel brochure. Choosing Kirkjufellsfosser as a deliberate destination also made for the longest travel day, most of which was spent simply driving to get there and then back, the entire length of the Snæfellsness Peninsula, to get to our accommodations for the night. Yet again, despite the extended ‘windshield’ time, and off and on rain, we were still able to enjoy the ever-changing and wondrous scenery.

The travel brochures hardly do Iceland justice and it’s impossible to portray the incredible diversity we witnessed effectively. Those brochures often show scenes from the same vantage point, so when you arrive, the scene before you is quite different from what you expected to see. This image is a prime example. The ‘iconic’ image is made from near the top of the cascade, with Kirkjufell mountain in the background. That vantage point is near the top of the photo above. However, there are many other ways to view this waterfall, including from near the base, which is where this photo was made. It’s important to note, that these falls are named, fosser, which is the plural to foss, or waterfall. In fact, many of the waterfalls in Iceland are made up of multiple sub-falls.

Nikon D300
TAMRON SP AF 17-50mm F2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical IF A16NII @ 32 mm
1.3 sec, f/32, ISO 200

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

“Spring Fire”

“Keep a little fire burning; however small, however hidden.”

― Cormac McCarthy

It’s not often that I revisit a subject, especially a flower. However, I felt this one needed to be viewed a bit closer in a slightly different composition. So, here it is. The slightly different angle even changed the title for me. I see more of the ‘fire’ in this lovely tulip than I had before.

I find it interesting what even a slight shift in vantage point an do to things. In fact, I think I prefer this composition more than my previous version from a few days ago. There seems to be more energy and depth in this version and the light seems to play off the foliage a bit more.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm
3 sec, f/29.0, ISO 100 

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