Photographs by Frank

20 February 2015

Shadow Play

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,The "New" Yard & Environs,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 4:00 PM

About a week ago, I headed “down back”. I was expecting fairly harsh light as the skies were mostly clear and light from a low angle in the mid-afternoon, just before the sun dipped below the ridge to the west.

My expectations were met and I was able to make a series of photos of the vegetation sticking up out of the snow casting shadows on the nicely textured snow. Every once in a while nature cooperates with the photographer and his visions!

A couple of days later we got another 10-12 inches of snow and although I have not been down back since, I am sure that there is not much emergent vegetation now!

My next vision involves shadows and wind-blown snow out on the lake. But not today (I think) as the mid-afternoon temperature is hovering right around 10 degrees (and some where around -5 with the wind chill).

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19 January 2015

Snow and Light

Filed under: Monadnock Region,The "New" Yard & Environs,Winter — Tags: — Frank @ 7:00 PM

Snow is not simple.

Once it falls to the ground, it begins to change. It is sculpted by the wind, pitted by rain, trod upon by animals, etc.

The late afternoon sunlight playing upon a snowy landscape makes life interesting for photographers.

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9 January 2015

Plow Truck

Filed under: Monadnock Region,Winter — Tags: — Frank @ 7:00 PM

Here in northern New England, folks with long driveways often keep a “plow truck”.

These old (and usually unregistered) pickup trucks are kept running for the sole purpose of plowing snow off the driveway during our long cold winters.

I have driven past this long unused plow truck dozens of times over the past three or four years but the light falling on it was never “interesting”. Yesterday morning things were different. Thus, with the temperature in the single digits and ungloved hands, I stopped and made a few exposures of this plow truck.

Oddly, this particular plow truck has been left way down at the road end of a driveway that is long enough that one can not see the house from the road. Usually plow trucks are kept up near the house. After all, who wants to have to walk the length of a long driveway in deep snow just to begin the clearing of one’s driveway. Just one of life’s little mysteries!

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Patterns in the Snow (and Ice)

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 6:00 PM

Yesterday afternoon Joan and I took a walk “down back” in “our” beaver-made wetland. The temperature was about 15 degrees F (up from a low of -12 the previous night) but there was no wind (a stark contrast from the day before). As long as we stayed in the sunny spots the walking was quite pleasant.

The sky was cloudless. The sun was low. There was a light coating of new and very dry snow. These conditions made all sorts of interesting patterns on the frozen ground stand out. I photographed them!

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31 December 2013

An ‘Adams Dozen’ for 2013

Back at the end of 2011, I added an entry titled  “Twelve Images” based on  Ansel Adams idea that twelve good photographs in a year is a decent crop. I had intended this to be an annual event but I seem to have missed last year.

I actually chose, printed and matted the twelve photos for 2012; they are stored carefully in their own print box. However, I do not seem to have written a blog entry about them… oh well! It doesn’t seem right to post them at this late date, so I’ll just forge ahead!

Thus, without further ado, here is my ‘Adams Dozen’ for 2013:

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15 February 2013

A Day Off from Work

Filed under: Landscapes,Winter — Tags: , , , — Frank @ 5:00 PM

I had not planned on making photographs this past Tuesday. However, circumstances gave us some free time so Joan and I headed down to Sachuest NWR in Middletown, Rhode Island. We did not get quite that far. The nor’easter at the end of the previous week had washed out the road and knocked down the power lines along Sachuest Point Road. Thus the road was closed  about a mile or so before the refuge gate.

Instead, we parked at the small lot at the west end of Second Beach (along with all of the surfers) and had a nice walk down the beach. The wind was blowing steadily and the temperature was in the low 40s. The walk down the beach, with the wind at our backs, was slow and pleasant; we moved somewhat more rapidly on the return trip.

I had the  little camera* with me. There were some nice clouds and so I got some nice photographs. Actually, it was very hard to keep my focus on the dunes and the sky since there are always so many interesting “distractions” at one’s feet while walking a beach.

After our walk on the beach we had a late lunch and headed down to Sakonnet Point in Little Compton. Sachuest Point and Sakonnet Point are separated by roughly three miles (of water) as the crow flies. According to Google maps it is roughly 25 miles by road between the two spots… the RI coast is definitely convoluted!

The “orange door” photograph was made at Sakonnet Point; all of the others were made along Second Beach. The reflection in the window of the orange door is as I saw it; it was not “Photoshopped in”.

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*I am getting pretty good at remembering to take the Nikon 1 whenever I leave the house. I was certainly glad to have it with me last Tuesday! On the way back to Bridgewater from Little Compton we stopped at a Best Buy because our cordless phone in the house has been acting up. We found an adequate replacement and had already purchased it when, as we were headed towards the exit, Joan pointed out their display of the various Nikon 1 models… I ended up with the 30-110 mm lens for the Nikon 1 that I had been thinking about. I bet it will be a long time before Joan mentions a camera display to me again!!!!

20 January 2013

Beaver Swamp in Winter

Filed under: Landscapes,The "New" Yard & Environs,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 8:00 PM

I made this photograph about a week ago* at the end of our “January thaw”… a couple of days with high temperatures near 50o F and nights with above freezing temperatures.

The forecast called for a cold front to move through and an accumulation of four to six inches of snow overnight and the next morning. I was reading in the living room when I noticed the weather beginning to change.

Knowing that weather in flux often makes for good photographs, I pulled on my boots and headed out for a short walk to the beaver swamp at the back of our property. We live at the south end of this wetland. There are often nice skies at the north end during changeable weather.

I began by taking a few photos from the safety of the edge of wetland. However, I knew the best place to photograph this scene was from near the middle where I could use the channel of open water as a leading line and the view of the sky to the north would be best.

If one has never walked a wetland like this, you need to know that the grassy areas you see in the foreground are called a “wet meadow” for good reason. The clumps of grass one sees are sticking out of a boggy mess. My type of terrain!

The just ending  “January thaw”  meant that the ice in this wet meadow was likely to be thin. I had donned only my regular hiking boots rather than my green wellies. Heading out into the meadow, I calculated that the chance of wet socks was high but one accepts such things in pursuit of “art”.

About three-quarters of the way out, I felt the rush of ice water into my left boot. I must have reacted quickly since I did not feel any of the real squishiness that accompanies a fully flooded boot and it only took a few minutes for my body heat to warm the water so that I did not notice it!

I proceeded to make some photographs while watching the cold front move across the scene in front of me.  The diagonal line of heavy clouds starting at the tree line on the left and heading up and to the right is the front.

I hung around for maybe a half hour until there was no blue sky remaining in view and headed back to the house. I was about ninety percent of the way back to “dry land” when my right boot met the same fate as my left one!

Was the result worth the cold wet feet? I think so!

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*On Tuesday, the 15th at 1:59 PM to be exact; ain’t metadata wonderful!

14 January 2013

A Foggy Saturday

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 3:00 PM

‘Twas a foggy day on Saturday.

I headed out late morning to make the rounds of my “good in fog” places to photograph… Meetinghouse Hill, the North Branch River and several wetlands.

By early afternoon and fog had lifted considerably and I headed back home in time for a late lunch. Eventually, I settled in to edit the photographs I had made. Some time later, I noticed dense fog swirling around trees I can see from my second floor “studio” window.

I felt compelled to grab the camera again and headed down to the bridge and public beach on Gregg Lake. There are a number of subjects here that “require” dense fog in order to isolate them from rather busy, distracting backgrounds.

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Two from Thursday

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 12:00 PM

Thursday was a warm, for January, day (the high temperature was around  40 degrees ) with some sun. In the middle of the afternoon, Joan and I headed out on snowshoes with no particular goal in mind.

We made a right at the end of the driveway and headed up Brimstone Corner Road.  Eventually, we turned down Boutman Road; at the low point (where the stream crosses the road), we headed off into the woods and looped back up to Brimstone Corner.

As the afternoon progressed, the light got  really nice… soft yet directional.

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6 January 2013

Snowshoe Jaunts

Filed under: Landscapes,Winter — Tags: , — Frank @ 12:00 PM

Just after lunch on the past two days, we headed out on our snowshoes. Rather than heading down the driveway and deciding which way to turn on Brimstone Corner, we headed “down back” into the woods.

Our goal, on both days, were the beaver “swamps” that lie between our house and Willard Pond. These wetlands are more properly called  “wet meadows” according to the book* on wetlands I have been reading.

There are two, roughly parallel  beaver-made wetlands between our house and Willard Pond. A small fraction of the closest one occupies the back of our property and extends roughly half a mile to the north.  The second, lies farther to the west. There is a low ridge and a quarter mile separating the two.

It has been about a week since we have had any new snow and it is quite amazing to see the number of moose and dear tracks crisscrossing the woods. There are also, of course, numerous tracks made by smaller animals.

On Friday, our route followed the edge of “our” beaver meadow and there were a number of places right at the margin of the wet land with dozens of moose prints; spots where they were browsing.  On Saturday, we found a site where a deer had clearly bedded down for a night.

None of these these things make for artistic photos but it is fun seeing them.

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* Swampwalker's Journal: A Wetlands Year by David M. Carroll. Highly recommended!

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