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"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."


Robert Frost

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Moonrise at Twilight at the Beach in the Snow: You Must Believe in Spring

The afternoon that I discovered Talia (see previous post), it was the first warm afternoon we'd had in what seemed like a century (and probably was a few months in reality) in Connecticut. It's been a tough winter. One of the things about staying indoors a lot though is that you forget how interesting (and dare I say it, pretty?) the winter world can be (especially when you're a writer that works at home). I really envy people that ski a lot (especially cross-country skiers--and I used to love cross-country skiing, so maybe next winter I'll go back to it) because they do get to see a lot of the nice side of winter. They probably hate it less.

Anyway, after I'd discovered Talia and spent an hour or so shooting photos of her (including a kind of nice series of depth of field studies that I may use in a book--provided I can get her to sign a release), I started to pack up and as always happens to me, I turned around to see a really fascinating view. It seems that whenever I'm about to leave and I'm just looking forward to putting the gear away and taking a ride, a shot pops up. Who am I to turn away? This is not a great shot in terms of composition (and I was standing on an ice field when I shot it and just hoping to keep my balance) but it had a lot of interesting exposure challenges: it was twilight, there was a full moon rising, the foreground was mostly snow and, oddly enough, there was a sunset going on behind me. Since I've been working on a book about exposure (an update of my book Exposure Photo Workshop: Develop Your Digital Photography Talent), I decided to accept the challenge. Even though I'm not crazy about the shot, I think the mix of exposure challenges was fun to play with and it looks very much as I saw it: snow and sky bathed in twilight and the warm moon rising. (The shot was made at ISO 1600, by the way, so you will see some noise in the sky--but I thought it was minimal considering the low light.)

And, interestingly, I think this shot will remind me of the day the ice broke: the day that I could finally see spring in the light of the first full moon I'd noticed all winter. I think I heard spring talking to my soul in the moonlight, saying "Remember me?" And trust me, after this winter, my soul needs spring. Yours does too, probably. So, get out, find a pretty end-of-winter scene and let winter go. Wave it goodbye and wish it well. It's less than 30 days to spring: my neighbor told me the daffodils are coming up under the snow. I haven't seen them, but I believe her.

(The photo was made with a Nikon D90 body with an 18-70mm lens and exposed 1/50 at f/4.2, ISO 1600 and exposed in RAW.)

1 comment:

Frank said...

Hi Jeff,

I am amused that you picked this particular thing to show today. Sunday night I was out playing with some night shots. These are my two best shots of the night. (It was a very cloudy night.)

This is a ship in Salem, MA.

http://tinyurl.com/4crhn2f

This is Horn Pond in Woburn, MA. (I really liked the way it shows the ambient light of the city, as well as the individual street lights.)

http://tinyurl.com/457lcvk

Frank