As I have said a few times before, it is being a very strange fall here in southern Maine. Still no frost in the third week of October, and the trees are struggling with the change…exposed trees, alone in the field, or on the edge of the forest are turning late and we are not getting the reds of a normal year…and inside the forest many leaves are just turning brown and falling. Still you find scenes like this one…taken into the sun as patches of sun and shadow raced across the field, spotlighting the colors. The sky was so intense I had to tone it down to keep the image from looking too surreal. iPhone SE with Sirui 18mm ultra-wide lens. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
Looking into Autumn, and into the sun, down another long alley of marsh, this time just over the hill from the Kennebunk town line on Rt. 9. I really like the perspective of the Sirui 18mm ultra-wide for this kind of of shot, especially since it is wide both ways…vertically as well as horizontally. It gives the scene a very natural look. At least to my eye. The high contrast light picks out every detail, and the Apple Camera app’s Smart HDR renders the range of light effectively, producing another memorable image of fall. Or that is what I think. Processed in Apple Photos.
Just above eye-level in forest along the stream above Day Brook Pond on the Kennebunk Plains, where the trees are slowly turning in our frostless fall, this small shoot on the trunk of a large maple, caught by the sun behind it, appears as the flag of the fall that is still coming…the banner of autumn. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Apple Photos. ISO 160 @ f4 @ 1/500th.
Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve at Laudholm Farms, Wells, Maine, USA — Early signs of fall. The leaves have begun to change over the past 3 days and I can see autumn coming…feel it too in the mornings. Sony Rx10iv at 567mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. ISO 800 @ f4 @ 1/500th.
Fringed Polygala and Trailing Pine, Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, Kennebunk, Maine. — Sometimes nature arranges the most wonderful still-lives. This juxtaposition of color and texture certainly looks intentional…artistic in every sense. Nikon B700 (which I bought as a backup camera for trips and for a knock-about camera on my trike adventures, and with which I am having a lot of fun) at about 500mm equivalent. Program mode. Still experimenting with Picture Control modes for the best results with this camera. This was shot in Vivid, with Active-D lighting set to low, and -.3 EV exposure compensations. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
It is, at long last, Lady Slipper Orchid season here in southern Maine. I have been watching my spots for two weeks waiting for the bloom. Last year a gentleman I met walking pointed me to the most amazing spread of Orchids that I have ever seen…several hundred plants, at the very least, spread along a hillside in the woods above a stream. The exact location will remain undisclosed as some Lady Slippers were dug up nearby last year. Lady Slippers are almost impossible to transplant, as they rely on a symbiotic fungus in the soil, but it does not stop people from trying. So, despite my broken wrist and various deep bruises and a well tweaked back from my walking encounter with a truck on Saturday, I went out with three cameras to see how they were doing this year. I was not disappointed. The shot above is with my go-to Sony Rx10iv at 31mm equivalent. (Program mode for ISO 100 @ f4 @ 1/250th). The following shot is with my new Nikon B700, which I bought as a back-up camera to carry on trip (and which might become my preferred dragonfly camera). I am reacquainting myself with the Nikon way of doing things. It was also taken in Program at 68mm equivalent with macro engaged, ISO 100 @ f4.1 @ 1/1000th, -1 EV.
And finally here is a shot with my iPhone SE2020, the Moment thin case, and the Sirui 18mm ultra-wide lens. Standard Camera app on Auto. I really like the “in context” effect of the ultra-wide perspective.
Trout Lily (aka Adder’s Tongue): Emmon’s Preserve, Kennebunkport, Maine, USA — I rode my eTrike out to Emmon’s Preserve on Monday, in part to see if the Trout Lily was in bloom. I have always called this early spring flower of the Maine woods Trout Lily, but a few years ago, I found that it has another, maybe more common name…Adder’s Tongue. By whatever name, the drooping yellow and orange blossoms above the dark spotted green leaves are one of the first delights of spring in Southern Maine…but, you have to be on your toes to catch them. Two weeks ago, the leaves were not even showing above ground. 5 days ago, I only found a few unopened buds. Yesterday, two favored patches in sunny spots in the forest were in full bloom. Some of the more shaded clusters are just poking up, but as the weather is staying above 50 degrees for a few days, they will quickly develop flowers and bloom…and then there well only be the clusters of patterned leaves close to the ground (marked like a trout) for the rest of the summer. Sony Rx10iv at 78mm equivalent. Full time macro on the ZEISS lens got me to within inches, and the flip out LCD allowed me to shoot from ground level looking up at the drooping flower. For a shot like this the movable spot focus is ideal as I can just tap the touch LCD over the flower and get precise focus. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. As you see, this shot was taken in the natural dappled shade of the forest floor. ISO 100 @ f3.5 @ 1/250th.
What makes fall fall is not only the color of the maple and oak leaves, it is the feel and texture of them underfoot…the carpet. Not so good when it covers your lawn, but it certainly gives the fall forest its character. Sony a6500 with 18mm equivalent ultra wide combo lens set. Program mode with auto HDR. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. Laudholm Farms, Wells, Maine.
It takes a while for fall to work its way through a forest, and it always starts at the outside edge, where colder air reaches ground level. That produces some beautiful tapestries of color. This shot is on Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge land along Route 9 near the Mousam River bridge in Kennebunk Maine. Sony Rx10iv sweep panorama in portrait mode at 24mm equivalent. +1 EV (necessary on this camera in panorama mode.) Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. Nominal exposure ISO 100 @ f6.3 @ 1/250th.
Laudholm Farms, Wells, Maine, USA. I try to remember to do at a least a few vertical framings on every outing, just for the difference in perspective. This is a shot with the Sony a6500 and the 18mm equivalent ultra-wide combo lens (16mm f2.8 plus Ultra Wide converter). Program mode with HDR. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.