We took a nice day trip up to Brattleboro, Vermont for lunch and some sightseeing.
We walked down to the bridge that crosses over the Connecticut River into New Hampshire. In fact, technically we were in New Hampshire when I took this photo. I had set up to take a nice landscape shot with my iCamera. I heard a boat motoring upstream under the bridge, and my initial instinct was to take a photo before the boat came into my field of view and disrupted the natural scene.
But when I heard the boat sound its old-timey steam whistle, I thought that it might be a quaint addition to the composition. And it was—how fortuitious! I waited until the boat reached a perfect position in the scene (near an intersection of thirds, naturally), and took the photo.
I lightly edited this shot in Luminar (which I’ve been loving lately), to unify and balance the light, bring out some of the color and subtlety, and to impart a bit of a magical, film-like look.
There’s a lot that can be said about the year 2017. I prefer to focus on the positive, and it’s easier for me to do so through images than words. So here’s a gallery of photos I took in 2017. Many of these images I’ve already posted on Facebook or Instagram, but it’s nice to have them all together here in a commercial-free environment. I hope you enjoy them.
Recently, for personal enrichment, I completed an online photography course taught by the legendary artist Annie Leibovitz. I am enjoying learning more about photographing people, and I’m looking forward to taking my photography to a new level in 2018.
Interested in purchasing prints or a license to republish any of these photos? Get in touch.
My newest painting portrays Mt. Tom, as seen from the Fort Hill section of Easthampton, Massachusetts. Early summer corn grows in the foreground.
A friend of mine was looking for some art to hang on the wall of his new office, so I obliged. I produced this 44 by 55 inch acrylic-on-canvas painting in one month. I also built a custom frame from select pine, and painted it a deep “espresso” color.
In years past, I might have taken several months to complete a work of this size. This time, I was thankful for the tight deadline, and the opportunity to try a new approach to getting work done more efficiently.
I’ve been enjoying taking photos at night and at the blue hour, using my Olympus camera, a tripod, and a long exposure. The time of day (9:10 p.m.) was the crucial element in this shot, because at this time of year, at my latitude, there’s still enough ambient light to take a four-second exposure that reveals some details in the landscape.
Moreover, with the sun already sunk below the horizon, the sky’s light is predominantly blue in hue, which makes a nice cool counterpoint for the warmer LED light that spills out from my barn through windows and cracks between the boards, illuminating swaths of grass and garden.
This was a fun shot to make. The photo makes it appear as if all of the fireflies are lit at the same time. In actuality, I set up a long, tripod-mounted exposure, and individual fireflies may have been represented multiple times.
In order to illuminate the peach trees and the rhubarb patch in the foreground, I walked around the perimeter of the scene with a flashlight while the camera’s shutter was open, reflecting diffuse light off a lawn chair turned on its side. I had to take a few shots to get the exposure just right. This one took about a minute and a half, as I recall.
I love the unexpected results of this kind of shot—it reminds me to appreciate the photography of yore, when long exposures were necessary under even the brightest conditions, and a degree of uncertainty was the norm.
I’m sure that some of the fireflies appear in the photo not because of their own phosphorescence, but because they are being lit from the side by my flashlight. The glowing effect is magical nonetheless, and hopefully it captures the spirit of an early summer evening.
A photograph I took of a favorite old tree in a favorite meadow in a favorite town in Massachusetts
One of the things I love the most about living in New England is the drama of the passing seasons. Each one has its own distinctive feel and intensity. For many years fall has been my favorite, but I love the others as well. This past summer has been particularly sweet in terms of temperature, weather, personal discovery, and accomplishment.
Shown above is a picture I took this past summer, of a favorite old tree in a favorite meadow in Holyoke, Massachusetts. I’m just getting started on a painting of it.
But summer is gone, and fall is gearing up to unleash its fiery glory upon us. I can’t wait for blustery skies full of sculpted clouds, red, orange, and yellow leaves crunching under foot, cooler temperatures, longer shadows, mosquito-free hikes, jackets, hats, and scarves, pumpkins, apples, chilly bicycle and motorcycle rides, earlier, longer nights, cozy cafés, and a couple of extra blankets. Fall is almost here.
I often pass this old oak tree on my way to and from work. During every season and under every kind of weather it stands, watching the days and nights go by. The field is on the forward slope of a little knoll, which makes a perfect amphitheater for witnessing the harmony of elements.
I took this photograph in August of 2004 from a boat on Kachemak Bay, en route from Halibut Cove to Homer, Alaska. I love how the warm glow of the sun is subtly reflected in the calm water, and the way that the horizon line between water and sky is barely discernible. I also love how during the summer in Alaska, days seem to last forever. I’ve never been to Alaska in the winter, but I am sure that the same is true of nights during that season.
The paradoxical truth is that the best strategy for finding your way out of the fog is to enjoy the fog.