Tag Archives: relax

“My Green World” – Secord Forest

“My Green World” - Secord Forest

“The human body may need to receive sunlight through the tree canopy in order to be in a healthy state. I call this light “Interference Green Light” and it may be the top thing that you need to be receiving in order to be in good health and free of pain.”
― Steven Magee

I don’t know how true the quote is, but I know I need my ‘green’ time. To walk the forests and gaze upon Creation, as often as possible. When I’m outdoors, the busy world of my life fades into the background. It’s still there, but as a peripheral thing, that I can cal at will, but the green and peace of nature permeates me.

The ferns pictured above looked just like this. A verdant curtain, glowing with life, filled with hues of bright green and warmed by the sun. I could sit in this place for hours, watching the dragonflies flitting to and fro, the various butterflies on their endless quest for nectar, and the sound of the forest bids. It’s active and alive, yet ordered. Nature’s cycle, closing off spring and moving towards summer.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 300mm

1/160 sec, f/5.6 ISO 560

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“First of the Season” – Stouffville Reservoir Trail

“First of the Season” - Stouffville Reservoir Trail

“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?”…
“It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett

Interestingly enough, despite the cold April we experienced in my neck of the woods, the first white trillium blossom I found, appeared exactly to the date of last year’s. I though for certain that it would be a full week behind, but this beauty, and her companions, waiting to open up in the next day or two, are right on time. There’s no stopping the natural cycle.

In fact, I think this may even be the same plant that bloomed first, last year. The conditions must be just right in this particular patch, as the whole group of them is slightly advanced.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Mating Pair” – Rainbow Trout in Duffins Creek

“Mating Pair” - Rainbow Trout in Duffins Creek

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
― John Lubbock

When time allows, I like to visit Duffins creek and stroll the riverbank, especially at this time of year. The narrow wooded trail follows the shoreline, through grand cedar stands, into deep gullys, along the creek, with its variable structure of rocky sandbanks, deep holes, and fast flowing rapids.

At this time of year, new growth is slowly emerging. Splashes of bright green dot the forest floor. Spring plants such as Coltsfoot, Bloodroot, Trout Lilies, and violets dot the landscape, welcoming the warmth of spring. Fiddleheads, the young growth of ferns, sit in tight knots, not quite ready to open, and the trout start their annual run up the creek to the dam at Whitevale, a small hamlet north of Pickering, Ontario.

At the right time of day, the trout try to leap up the fifteen foot high concrete dam, designed to keep the introduced steelhead trout from migrating further upstream. On this visit, the trout were not jumping yet and were pooled just beneath the dam. Many rested in the shallow pools just above the last set of rapids, including this pair, in full breeding colours. The shallow water allowed me to get a clear image from slightly above. This pair will breed and shortly thereafter, follow the creek back to Lake Ontario, where they will remain till the instinct to migrate up the creek returns next spring.

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

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“Roadside Cascade near Gravenhurst”

Roadside Cascade near Gravenhurst 2012

“As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.”
― Henry David Thoreau

Simple beauty, oft passed by. This little cascade is right next to the highway outside of Gravenhurst, a small town in Ontario, Canada. I noticed it on my way to the cranberry marshes in Bala and decided to stop there on my way home. How many people speed by this place without even seeing it? Friends have asked where the photo was made and are surprised that it even exists, having passed it many times.

By the time I came back to check it out, the weather had turned to a steady rain. The rain actually enhanced the images, as it brought out the colours from the rock and leaves and allowed me to do a longer exposure to blur the flowing water. The cascade is fairly simple and accessible. It’s the kind of place I could sit and relax for hours on a more pleasant day. So, in a way, I’m happy that other people don’t notice it.

Nikon D300
Nikor 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 100mm
1 sec, f/32, ISO 1,000

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Into the Forest, Darkly” – Walkers Woods, Uxbridge

“Into the Forest Darkly” - Walkers Woods, Uxbridge

I find myself going back to my photo abstractions frequently. They bring me great pleasure, in that I never know quite how they will turn out. Don’t get me wrong, these are very deliberate photos, and I have a vision in my mind of the outcome. But, the random elements; light, speed, colours, and focus, all add their own unexpected twist to the final composition.

Case in point with the image above, I can see the scene very clearly and it lends itself well to a vertical pan. What I can’t predict, at least not yet, is what the effect of random branches across tree trunks, background reflections, and ambient light might have on the whole photo. I saw the branch across the tree in the forefront, but had no idea how the soft green leaves might play in the whole image.

This image was the result of a quick lunchtime excursion to a local conservation area. I just needed to walk among the trees. Being in nature is the place where I can really experience ‘living in the moment’. For some time, I was not sure what that expression meant. Apparently, this is a rare gift in our fast paced world. In the woods, the outside world melts away, and I am at peace. There is only me and only this place exists to me, at this moment. This place becomes my world and what is beyond is of no consequence. So, I am grateful for the ability to capture those moments that captivate me, while i’m in the moment, and share them. Hopefully, this image will resonate with others.

I called named the image “Into the Woods, Darkly” because  of all the dark spaces I saw below the trees, even thought the sky was bright. The photo technique brings all the dark places into the light, which I found interesting.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 f/2.8 @ 70 mm
1/4 sec @ f/16, ISO 250

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“The Search” – Buskerfest, Toronto

Old Lady at Toronto Buskerfest 2014

Another favourite photo and a venture into street photography for me. This photo was made last year at Toronto’s annual Buskerfest.

I was walking the street, knowing there would be some interesting scenes to photograph. The street was extremely busy and it became difficult to get a shot that was not full of distractions. I like to isolate my subject as much as possible. Off the main venue, Toronto’s Yonge Street, which is closed to traffic for Buskerfest, there were several people sitting and chatting, including this woman, who was searching through her purse for something. For her, it was a break from the busy crowds and a chance to sit and have a smoke.

Originally, I had titled this image “Old Lady at Buskerfest”, but on further reflection, I can’t tell if she is really that old. I don’t know her story, but the photo makes me want to know more. For now, it remains a moment in someone’s life, captured in a single image.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 f/2.8 @185 mm
1/60 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 200

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