Tag Archives: spring

“The Return”

“The Return”

“Home is where you go to find solace from the ever changing chaos, to find love within the confines of a heartless world, and to be reminded that no matter how far you wander, there will always be something waiting when you return.” 
― Kendal Rob

“The Return”

The return of migratory birds and the return of spring. Two things that go together nicely. Here we stand, on the cusp of spring, recent snows blanketing the ground in a final reminder of the season, now passing.

Birdsong, fills the air, between the sound of trees groaning in the north wind, its bite now feeling less severe, sun shining into the depths of the forest, lighting the dark recesses.

I love this time of year, the warming light and the lengthening days. In mere weeks, new growth with erupt from the ground, as the sun thaws the now frozen ground. Soon, life in abundance will return to the forest.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 170mm
1/400 sec, f/10.0 ISO 250

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“Up and Around”

“Up and Around”

“And this is how the forest changes, one step, one day, one moment at a time. ” 
― Ed Lehming

The time of change is at my doorstep. Though flurries still fill the air from time to time, the inevitable change is palpable. Paths once completely ice covered are now more passable. Mud and leaves fill the spaces between, and the ice slowly recedes.

Even the evergreens are a bit brighter, as the sun brings freshness their winter faded needles. Birdsong returns to fill the air.

I love this time of year, watching the gradual shift from ice to green. It reminds me that life is a cycle; that there are times of growth and times of rest. The toughest part is just before the change, a time when my world is ice covered and dull; uninspiring. Yet, with patience and the knowledge that it’s temporary, I venture out for moments like this, moments where the change is visible and I look forward to the days ahead.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70mm
1/4 sec, f/10.0 ISO 250

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“Spring Approaches”

“Spring Approaches”Winter hung in there, like an invalid refusing to die. Day after grey day the ice stayed hard; the world remained unfriendly and cold.” 
― Neil Gaiman

Contrary to the quote that I chose for this image, with the lengthening days and a few days of sunshine, winter is beginning to loosen its icy grip on the forest. The patches of ice and snow are retreating and the dull browns and yellows of the forest floor are beginning to take over.

Today, as I ventured into the forest once more, sounds dominated. There was the crunch, crunch of my icers (metal cleats that I attach to my hiking boots), on the frozen trail, hints of birdsong in the distance, and the roar of the wind, high above, setting the treetops into a wild frenzy of movement. As I watched the branches sway and clatter together, the movement reminded me of birth, the forest is waking, after its slumber and soon more hints of green will begin to emerge, the cycle repeats and soon, it will not just be sights and sounds, but the smells of the forest, that dominate.

This image, though not a filled with colours as my previous post, nicely illustrates the recession of snow, as it retreats back into a shallow valley, a brief respite from its inevitable demise.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0 ISO 250

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“Purity”

“Purity”

May you understand my love–because it is the only thing I have that is really mine, the only thing that I will be able to take with me into the next life. Please allow it to be courageous and pure; please make it capable of surviving the snares of the world.”
― Paulo Coelho

A simple title that describes my first impressions of this single, rain speckled, white peony blossom. Yesterday rained heavily and quite steadily, less than ideal conditions for peonies. So, I spend some time early in the morning salvaging a few of them to photograph and remember, before they get battered too badly.

Needless to say, this has been a spectacular year for my peonies and I’ve enjoyed photographing them at their peak. The raindrops are just an added bonus.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
0.8 sec, f/36.0 ISO 100

High Resolution image on 500px

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“Peonies in a Jar”

“Peonies in a Jar”

“It’s so curious: one can resist tears and ‘behave’ very well in the hardest hours of grief. But then someone makes you a friendly sign behind a window, or one notices that a flower that was in bud only yesterday has suddenly blossomed, or a letter slips from a drawer… and everything collapses. ”
― Colette

Here’s an assemblage of several of the peonies I’ve shared over the past few days, placed in a convenient mason jar. I do have a few more formal peony vases that my grandmother used, but I have not done a large blossom harvest yet. It’s been more of a select and cut as individual plants began to bloom, which has been a daily activity for the past week or so.

Though casually placed, I think they make a nice bouquet, showing the different colours and sizes in a single image, and the aroma is absolutely wonderful. The half quart jar also gives a reference point to gauge the size of the blossoms from. Some are quite large.

As I write this post, I can see several more ‘subjects’ ready to open. And, when the rain hopefully stops later today, I can get out and harvest them for the studio.

Since many came from my mother-in-law’s garden and her health is not great, I plan to document them all in a photo album. All that will be missing is the scent.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1.6 sec, f/36.0 ISO 100

High Resolution image on 500px

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“Marvelous Magenta”

“Marvelous Magenta”

A heavy sort of beauty,
yet delicate to the eye.
The peony welcomes the late spring sunshine,
and bears the burden of its rains.
Nourished, yet strained,
she bows to the beginning of summer.
– Ed Lehming

The peonies keep coming, and despite the rains, they are holding up quite well. As I’ve said before, how they hold up their heavy flowers is a real marvel. As I clip blossoms to photograph them, I am challenged to find a way to hold them up to photograph them. They either droop or pull the supports over. They are that heavy.

The blossom above is probably one of the heaviest so far. It’s thick magenta blossom is much larger than the earlier varieties which have been blooming in my gardens for the past few weeks. As you can also see, there are sub-blossoms ready to bloom as well, but they will yield smaller flowers.

This is my first year of really paying close attention to my peonies. Probably because they are all blooming around the same time. Since they are almost all from my mother-in-law, some have taken a few years to establish enough to come to full bloom. I had not realized that similar coloured blooms are actually different varieties. Such is the joy of gardening and learning.

My next challenge will be to figure out the names of these heirloom peonies.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1.6 sec, f/36.0 ISO 100

High Resolution image on 500px

for more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Pink Bliss”

“Pink Bliss”

“Now a soft kiss – Aye, by that kiss, I vow an endless bliss.”
― John Keats

What more can I say, I am enveloped in pink. It is the  colour theme of the season, the transition from whites to pinks and purples.

Our peonies, are redolent in pinks and magentas. The gardens, filled with pink ruffles, brilliant white ecstasy, and magenta glory.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
2.0 sec, f/36.0 ISO 100

High Resolution image on 500px

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