Tag Archives: Art

Capturing The Light

My photographic partner,Paul Smith and I unloaded the canoe in to the Aux Sauble River North of Massey at the 3 mile mark.We proceeded to paddle up river and we worked our way up to a small waterfalls and unloaded the canoe on a sandbar on the opposite shoreline.Paul elected to stay at the waterfalls and I proceeded upriver looking for photographic opportunities.Looking back down river I noticed a bit of a haze as the day was hot and muggy.

As I walked upstream I noticed a beam of sunlight highlighting the grass and ferns near the waters edge.The scene was on the opposite shore of the river.The time was getting on late afternoon and creating heavy shadows on the far shore.The sun also sets in that direction.I quickly set up and shot the scene that you see above.The dark background brings out the foreground and the reflections in the water.The dark background also helps eliminate clutter.It also helps to keep the shot tightly composed.

I photographed the composition with a zoom setting of 135 and the shutter speed at 0.6 sec and f25.

I continued walking upstream and I noticed some unique lighting ahead of me that you see in the photo above.The problem was that the background was very dark and the right shoreline was brightly lit.I set up the camera and tripod and created the composition you see above.I set the exposure for the sandbar and took a photo and then I took a exposure on the background and took a photo at that setting.This allowed me to bring both photos into Photoshop and achieve what I was looking for.

At this time it was getting late and walking further upstream was getting harder going.I had covered about a mile and a half.I retraced my steps back downstream and met Paul at the waterfalls.

We loaded the canoe and drifted back down river enjoying the stillness and quiet of the woods.Beaver were swimming ahead of  and Paul heard twiggs snapping beside us up in the bush.We stopped paddling and listened for a few moments but nothing happened.It was dark by the time we got back to the truck and headed home.

It was a great afternoon and evening enjoying the wilderness and getting a quality photo or two in the process an added bonus.As you can see I am always watching for interesting lighting situations.This only can happen if you spend a lot of time observing what is happening around you.

So until next time happy trails.

Mile 29 Aux Sauble River

Late afternoon last Thursday Paul Smith and I head up to the 42 mile mark on the Aux Sauble River North of Massey.This location has a good set of rapids which are not of much interest in photographing.The river above the rapids is quite interesting with good photographing opportunities.

We had been here the week before when there was an overcast sky and the air was heavy with moisture.As a matter fact there was a fine mist in the air that you could not see,but the mist showed up in the photos.I had a lot of unsharp photos,especially with the rocks.

This time around the problem was that we had shadow to the left and right of us and brightly lit shoreline ahead of us.There was a touch of wind that did not stop completely.Another problem we ran into was that the fish were jumping at a tiny white mayfly that probably measured about a 1/8 inch. I had seen one fly by  me close up so I was able to identify  it as a mayfly hatch.You would press the shutter and a fish would jump creating ripples in the water.

I walked out to a rock above the rapids in my chest waders  and noticed some reddish colored rocks in front of me.Looking at the far shore line I saw rocks and deadheads reflecting in the water.By combining the reddish rocks for foreground and the far shore for depth I created an  interesting composition.I set my zoom lense at 44mm and the shutter speed at 4 sec and the f stops at f25.

Once we lost our lightning we packed up and headed back down the road.We decided to take the crossover road that connects the Tote Road to the Westbranch Road North of Webbwood. This road is used by loggers to get in to the area to cut trees and haul the logs to the sawmill.Paul and I were driving along when we drove down a small hill and before us was a swampy area with blackish water by the road.What caught our eye was a group of deadheads on the far side with reddish orange grass behind them.The water was dead calm and the lighting was gorgeous.We parked the truck and proceeded to photograph and low and behold we again had problems with fish jumping.

The above photo was one of the compositions that I came up with.Shot with a zoom setting of 65 mm and a shutter speed of 3.2 sec @ f22.One of the things that I had to watch out for was there was a lot of gray in the background that would not look good.The lightning lasted about a half an hour,before we headed home.

So until next time happy trails.

After The Storm

Last week my granddaughter Tisha came for a weeks visit.On the Thursday past Tisha and I went out photographing on the Wakanassin River North of Webbwood.The previous week I had explored a section of the river that showed some promise.It was too late in the evening to get anything in the way of a photo.

So loading up our gear and wearing chest waders the two of us proceeded to wade down the river. I was just getting ready to set up the camera when the dark clouds rolled in and we got drenched by four separated showers.The wind picked up briskly and the rain came down very hard.With no where to seek shelter Tisha and I endured the showers standing out in the middle of the river,getting soaked in the meantime.

The showers were short lived and the cloud cover was moving fairly quickly.Looking up river I noticed swirls of mist moving across the face of the hill.I proceeded to set up the camera and tripod and looked around for a good setup to compose my shot.I anchored the left side of the photo with the left river bank at a group of rocks.The wind was now non-existence now so there was some reflection on the water. But what really made the photo was the sun started peeking out from behind the cloud cover creating some beautiful lighting.You had to be quick on the shutter to capture the various lighting highlights and at the same time capture the mist moving in front of the hills.

You will also notice a dark cedar tree in the fore-ground that tends to add depth to the photo.This photo was shot at a shutter speed of 1/13 sec @ f 25 with the lense at 60 mm.

My granddaughter Tisha and I had a great day together in the wilderness and when the sun came out the warmth of the sun soon dried us out.So until next time happy trails.

Hiking Along A River

It has been a hot and dry summer so far and with very low water levels and I have been able to get some interesting shots.With the extraordinary low water there are more rocks exposed and more color.

A couple of days ago I drove up the Westbranch behind Webbwood  to explore the Wakonassin River.I drove up to the 37 mile mark on gravel roads where I started hiking.I have found that you will walk many a mile sometimes before an interesting composition presents itself.Because of the low shutter speeds I shot at,the wind is a constant problem.One must be very patient and wait till the wind stops blowing. I have stayed at a setup for an hour or more waiting for that wind to stop.I am forever watching the trees waiting for the calm to come.At times you may only get a few seconds or a few minutes to get that photo.Be sure that there is no ripple on the water if it is reflections you are looking at.I will at times bring my fishing pole and fish while I am waiting for the wind to abate or the lighting to change.

I was walking downstream when I noticed some nicely colored rocks at the back end of a bend in the river.There was a fair  amount of reflection of the rocks into the river.As the water is constantly moving you will never get a perfect reflection here.But that is okay.You will also notice that the predominant color is green in this photo.The trees are also reflecting into the water giving a green cast.There was a cedar tree in the foreground that I used to give depth and also to add more contrast and shadows to break up the background.I also have a boulder to the right of the photo that helped break up the green color and to again add depth.The old tree trunk on the left adds more interest to the photo,but I find the old tree on the right a bit of a hindrance but I can live with it.

This photo was shot at 115 mm at 1/5 sec @ f22.The wind as I have explained previously was a problem and I had to play the waiting game.I didn’t catch any Brook Trout that day but it still was a beautiful day to be in the wilderness.So until next time watch the wind and happy trails

Shadows

I have been ask if the water is always dark and lots of shadows where I photograph.The great majority of my work is done along rivers and creeks.The rivers are usually flowing between hills with a lot of tree growth.A majority of my photographic work takes place in wilderness areas and the tree growth is mature.

Depending on the time of day,there is usually a lot of shadows created by hills and overhanging trees.The sun is usually starting to disappear behind the hills by three in the afternoon and starting to filter through the trees.I carry a compass with me and I can check to see were the sun rises and sets. This is important to determine whether you will get back lighting 0r cross lighting.

The shadows used in conjunction with the lighting can create some awesome photographs.Looking at the photo above,you can see the sun is cross lighting in the foreground and you have deep shadows in the background.The sun is on the right hand side of this photo.Using this to good effect you can create a mysterious turn into deeper woods and good depth of field.You will also notice that the sun is highlighting parts of the trees on the left breaking up the shadows.

The above photo was shot at 1/4 sec with the zoom set at 135 @ f22. You must always be patient and take many shots.This particular afternoon there was moving cloud cover.By watching the scene before me I was able to get many shots as the sun reappeared from behind the clouds By watching the light intensity I could get different effects and then choose the photo I thought gave me the best effects.So until next time watch your shadows and happy trails

Two Shot Pano

There are times when I come across a particular locale that I have shot many times that I can improve on a previous shot.To keep the weight down I carry only one lense and camera.The lense is a 28 to 135 zoom.

At times you are limited as to where you can set up your tripod so I have to make the best of a given situation.As I do not carry a wide angle lense I will set up for a panorama.The above photo consists of 2 horizontally shot photos,overlapped.

The 2 photo pano allows me to compose a photo that shows the ruggedness of this scene.I used the rocks in the foreground and the left side to draw in the viewer and lead the eye along the edge of the river and also to create depth.I also have created a U shape in my composition by adding the rocks on the right to complete the composition.

This 2 shot composition was shot at 65 mm with a shutter speed of 1.6 sec at f32. Using photoshop’s photomerge to stitch the pano together,the final product is 34″x12″ with a 1/2″ border ready for matting and framing.

Next time you are out think about trying a small pano.Till next time happy trails

The Photo At Your Feet

The photo at your feet.Many times while out photographing I have come across a nice composition right at my feet.It really pays to look down and see what is there before you while you are scanning the whole landscape. I call this the photo within the photo.The above photo was captured during a late Spring evening and the water was glowing from within. Placing the 6 ” waterfalls in the top left hand corner and framing the gold color water with the rocks I was able to create this awesome photo as the color just pops out at you.

The photo was taken with a zoom setting of 41 mm and a shutter speed of 0.8 sec f29.The ISO was set at 100.You could almost call this micro landscape photograph or photo art.

The photo shown above is another capture that I created by looking down in front of me.This particular photo has beautiful lighting and pure energy.By using a slow shutter speed you create flow patterns that help in the creation of the photo.

The photo was taken with a zoom setting of 41mm and a shutter speed of 1.3 sec f 29.Remember at this close range you need your depth of field for the detail.So until next time,look down and happy trails.

McGee Falls

Happy Easter everyone and your families.

A couple weeks ago Paul Smith and myself stopped in at the East Bull Lake Wilderness Lodge.The lodge is located 22 miles North of Massey in a  beautiful wilderness area.You may access there website for more info and plan a beautiful photographic experience.

http://www.thunderbearlodge.com

The hospitality is excellent.We stayed for coffee and Jerry the owner of the lodge told us about McGee Falls. We headed out there yesterday with two quads from the lodge as the falls is 5 miles off the main road. Paul and I are novices at driving quads so we took our time driving over some pretty rough trails.On arriving we where not disappointed  in the scenery.An area of pristine beauty lay before us with rushing water and colorful rock structures.

The day was cloudy with a threat of rain and very windy.It was difficult photographing at best.We were able to get some photos by not photographing any trees in the photo as you can see in the above photo.The photo was shot at 135 mm with a shutter speed 0.3 sec at f 22.

The next photo was shot with the zoom lense set at 56 mm and a shutter speed of 1 sec at f 22. There is some nice lighting in this photo and I wanted to show the rocks to good effect.The cloud cover got darker and it started to rain so we thought we had better head out and back to the lodge.

If you are ever in the area stop in for a coffee with Jerry and enjoy the scenery.For those looking for a different photographic adventure call Jerry at the East Bull Lake Wilderness Lodge and make arrangements.

East Bull Lake Wilderness Lodge

This past Sunday I took a trip into Cameron Falls for an evening shoot.The sky was clear and blue with no cloud cover.The wind was brisk and cool but we have to remember it is still March.The water levels were quite low and there were lots of pools. A trio of Hooded Mergansers flew in to the open water below the falls. It was fun to watch the males chase after one another in there attempts to court the female.

With blue from the sky,copper from the rocks,gold from the evergreens reflecting into the pools and the low light filtering through the trees onto the rocks in the top right hand corner I created this colorful scene.

I set my 28-135 zoom @ 80mm and the shutter speed  at 1 sec,F22.Using the black rocks for fore ground  I set this shot up.

Northern Spring

Spring appears to have arrive in the North country.The rivers are starting to open up and Paul Smith and I headed out to Chutes Provincial Park,Massey. It was a beautiful warm sunny late afternoon.The photo possibilities were scarce but I managed to get some shots in.We found an interesting piece of ice sculpture and I created the composition above with the ice along the shore line as a lead in. The water is very dark at this time of year,which allowed for better contrast in the photo.I shot this photo at 1 sec at f22 with the zoom lense set at 30 mm.

This photo was taken in the same locale but at a different angle. The ice formation is very prominent here and you can use your imagination as to what you see.I used sections of ice in the foreground to add depth and low shutter speed to give the water a soft look. Again the dark water adds contrast with the snow to create a pleasing effect.The photo was shot at 0.4 sec @ f22 with a zoom setting of 28 mm.

I find that at this time of year there is not much color and the lighting can be harsh off the snow. We waited till late evening to do most of our photographing.