MAKING THE EPHEMERAL IMMORTAL: MAGIC MOMENTS THRU PHOTOGRAPHY

Life goes on… he’s expected to have enthusiasms. Enthusiasms… Enthusiasms… What are mine? What draws my admiration? What is that which gives me joy?

The above quote is from the 1987 theatrical release, “The Untouchables.” Al Capone, played with relish by Robert DeNiro is at a black tie dinner with his minions.  Although the culmination of his speech ends rather harshly,  this particular quote is a great lead-in for this week’s post.  As you know by now I have many such enthusiasms, but one particular joy has been with me since early childhood and has grown exponentially, and it is now part of almost all that I do – photography.  I have found photos to be essential to the success of this blog, as they clearly illuminate my topics du jour (actually du week)  and add color and excitement.  Taking photos on my travels also augments my memory of places and events.

Basically the main delight is capturing moments –  illusive and transitory and sometimes simply breathtaking.  And, in keeping with my blog’s mission statement this can be accomplished without taking an airplane to some exotic locale – there are fascinating and unbelievably beautiful vistas to capture right in my own backyard.

Presently I have over 20,000 digital photos on my Mac.  I also have thousands upon thousand of hard photos starting with my dad’s collection (he was a photofinisher and photographer) dating back from the early 1900’s and ending with my post college years – these are slowly being digitized. I am also working on what may eventually be a published book of photos called “Scapes,” and this is a challenge as I must cull down my multitude of landscapes, skyscapes, sunscapes, cloudscapes, moonscapes etc etc into a best-of assemblage befitting a coffee-table sized volume (or perhaps volumes).

As I review and catalog my photos, I have selected a bunch of local pics that I would like to share with you today. Most of them are not “Photoshopped” – the colors are original.

THE MOON – Anyone who has seen my Instagram, Facebook or Twitter accounts is aware of my obsession with astronomy and it has been a particular challenge to capture phases of the moon with just my Canon camera.  Fortunately nature has accommodated this challenge in the past year with blood moons (during a lunar eclipse the moon sometimes has a red glow) super moons (coincidence of a full moon in conjunction with its closes approach to the earth, resulting in a large appearance in the sky) a super harvest noon and moon alignments with Venus, Mars and Jupiter .  I also have, after many aborted attempts, captured the non-illuminated portion of a waxing (going from new moon to full moon) crescent moon: The bright dot is Venus, and the smaller dot is Mars, taken 10 weeks ago:

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Next up is a full moon right over my apartment:

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And a collage of the super harvest moon:

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This is one of he most detailed photos I have taken so far:

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WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU SEE? – Sometimes I take a shot of one subject and get a “Bonus” with imagery not expected – see if you can guess what they are:

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TAKING FLIGHT – As you can imagine it is difficult to get a still photo of a moving subject.  One must be the patient with the reward being these:

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RAINBOWS – Speaking of being lucky – you can never PLAN to take rainbow pictures – so capturing them is an amazement. I almost missed the last two, as I was looking to the left at some storm clouds and just happened to turn to my right as these appeared:

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BLACK AND WHITE – I don’t shoot often in black and white, but on occasion certain subjects just must be photographed that way. Look at these moody images:

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ARTSY VIEWS – While I usually don’t mess with nature by Photoshopping – I sometimes like to compose what I call an “artsy” composition:

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VARIATIONS ON A THEME – Sometimes I can’t decide which image I like the best and  just make a collage of them all. I am especially proud of the “progression” collages:

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JUST LET NATURE DO ITS THING – Most often I am just fortunate to catch nature performing its ever-changing dance. These photos are all untouched:

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FAVORITES – I do confess to having some favorites and will offer them as a finale:

The first three were part of my experimentation with macro photography:

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This is a sycamore seedpod – although it could be mistaken for the head of a GoT mace

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Unfortunately some of the delicate beauty of this dew on leaves of grass is minimized when blowing up the shot.

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Just passing by this collection of leaves and thought it was a perfect representation of autumn.

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The dew on these leaves took the morning sun and turned it into a sparkling silver sheen.

I confess that I take an inordinate amount of cloud pictures.  I am one of those Meteorology Enthusiasts that the Weather Channel was expressly created for.  I am also enthralled by the ever-changing vista – many of my pictures are hashtagged “no repeats in nature.”  I surely have never seen either of these formations twice:

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The last shot may appear to be a pretty fall scene – but it was actually taken a few weeks ago when I also got the full rainbow picks shown earlier.  It was near sunset, the sky was still quite overcast with dark stormy clouds but off to the west there was a slight clearing. Since the sun was very low on the horizon only the deep orange rays were shining and the still leafless trees reflected that color as if they were all full of fiery orange foliage.

The last two pictures were taken during Thanksgiving weekend in Marblehead Mass.  A snowy, grey day suddenly transformed into an awesome display as nature painted its sky canvas:

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Hope that sitting through this post was enjoyable and not like being stuck a neighbor’s home forced to watch a Carousel full of vacation slides.

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