There are just four weeks until the first day of spring. Though there is still snow on the ground at home, temperatures are getting warmer and my mind is starting to transition to spring. I am starting to think about spring trips to Northwest gardens like the Seattle and Portland Japanese gardens. We have not been to either one since the fall of 2019 prior to Covid-19. Each time I visit a garden, I come back with a mind full of ideas. Right now, we are focusing on selecting the right type of rhododendrons, azaleas, shade trees, deciduous shrubs and ground covers for Heatherwood’s Japanese garden. I am ready for a little inspiration.
My search for light continued. This image jumped out at me when I was walking by. Hard direct sunlight darted through branches above to highlight the leaves in the foreground. Filtered soft light covered the background leaves. Deep shadows hid the grass covered ground beneath the branches. The combination provided an eye-catching scene.
Many times when I go to a specific place to photograph, I am on a mission of learning and experimentation. This image is from such a photo shoot. My mission for this day was to experiment with light: hard light, soft light backlight, shadows, reflections, color. Yesterday’s post was a backlight image looking up to the sky from underneath a Japanese maple. Today’s image is an example of color and reflection.
Searching for different types of light helps me to be more aware of the beauty around me. I do not think there is bad light. Different forms lead to different perspectives of what is around me. As a learning photographer, my job is to make the best of what I see and feel.
As Christmas is quickly approaching and the temperature drops below freezing, I ask myself, “Where has the fall gone?”. I love the fall colors and try to get out and see as much as I can. This fall I actually was out quite a bit and had my camera with me much of the time. But, I did not post many of my colorful fall favorites. So, as the skies are now pretty dreary, I thought I would brighten them up with some of my “fall color” images.
The soft early morning light highlighted this scene. The maple tree, grasses, and pine shrub appear very soft. I enhanced the softness in post processing. The image was exposed to highlight the soft leaves of the Japanese maple. The background was in shade which created a nice dark contrast to the light maple. The image warms me all over.
Continuing with Dave duChemin’s course, I found this raking light on a gazebo roof in the Seattle Japanese Garden. The sun had just broken over the ridge of the adjacent Washington Arboretum. The soft light raking across the roof lasted for just a few moments before the direct sunlight engulfed the roof. I just happened to be in the right spot at the right time.
Red Maple/Yellow Ginko – Washington Japanese Garden
This is what fall color is all about. I was able to photograph in the Washington Japanese Garden almost at its prime this fall. Colors were gorgeous everywhere. This particular scene caught my eye contrasting the brilliant reds and yellows,
I am taking an on-line course, “The Compelling Frame” by Dave duChemin. My focus for this excursion was to explore how different types of light created different effects. Here, the soft mid-morning light set the colors of these trees on fire. I am always searching and exploring ways to help me progress through my never-ending journey in photography. I strongly recommend Dave duChemin’s course.