We are into our second day of pretty constant rain here in southern Maine…and we certainly need the rain. I went to Emmon’s Preserve on the Baston river in Kennebunkport, Maine, to see about some fall foliage shots with running water…but there was, for the first time in my memory, no water running down the ledges between the pools on the river. That is low water! You can see the standing water mark on the bolder, and the high water mark. Way low. Still, the pools were beautiful with the fall leaves. Sony a6500 with the 18mm equivalent ultra-wide combo. Program mode with HDR. Nominal exposure: ISO 100 @ f7.1 @ 1/100th. -1EV in an attempt to hold some detail in the overcast sky, and Program Shift for depth of field. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
Another landscape to celebrate the season of fall foliage. This one is the Kennebunk River at the Walsh Preserve (Arundel Land Conservancy) off river road in Kennebunk (or Arundel perhaps 🙂 The preserve is just a narrow strip between residential properties on the road and on the river, but provides rare access to the river and a couple of restful benches for contemplation. Sony a6500 with the ultra wide lens combo (16mm f2.8 plus ultra wide converter for an equivalent focal length of 18mm). Program mode with HDR. Nominal exposure: ISO 100 @ f8 @ 1/250th. -1EV to hold the sky, program shift for greater depth of field. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
I wrote about this female Common Eider a few days ago. I watched her catch crabs just off the bridge near our beach where it crosses Back Creek for half an hour the other day, and watched her repeatedly avoid having her catch taken by a predatory gull. Her technique was simple. She took the crab where the gull could not go…back under water. This sequence catches the action. It reads as text would, left to right and down line by line.
Sony Rx10iii at 600mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ ISO 100 @ f4. Processed in Polarr on my iPad Pro, and assembled in Frame Magic.
Sometimes ice bells (see my previous post) overlap to form extended structures…natural ice sculptures in the abstract mode. They can get quite complex, as you see here in this image from the Mousam River at Roger’s Pond in Kennebunk Maine. They have a beauty all their own.
Sony RX10iii at 600mm equivalent field of view. Program Mode. F4 @ 1/250th @ ISO 200. Processed in Polarr on my Android tablet.
For those who were mystified by my reference to “ice bells on willow wands” last week, here is an ice bell on a willow wand. When willows grow close enough to the stream-bed so that they dip their branches or tender shoots in the water, and when it gets cold enough (it was 3 degrees when I took this photo), and when the willow is placed just so, so that the current can keep dipping it under. and when it is just stiff enough to keep popping back up…well, then ice bells form at and just above the surface of the water. We are deep in the polar vortex at the moment. It was 10 below last night…just the weather for ice bells to form on the Mousam River. Unfortunately the water is still high from the rain we had last week, and the willows where I go to photograph ice bells have been cut back away from the water (to accommodate the fly-fishers), so the crop so far this year has been meager. I was blessed to find this one. I will check again today, and I might even look for a more likely spot (though access to the river is limited here.)
Sony RX10iii at 600mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ f4 @ ISO 400. Cropped and processed in Polarr on my Surface Pro 3.
This week’s Supermoon (the last for this year) caused exceptionally high tides all along the coast here in southern Maine. This is Branch Brook at Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells Maine, a good mile inland from the sea. All about color and clouds and reflections.
Sony RX10iii at 24mm equivalent field of view. In-camera HDR. Nominal exposure: 1/1000th @ f4 @ ISO 100. Processed in Polarr on my Android tablet.
So, due to the press of time (I am posting during a layover in DC) this is going to be both the Pic for Today and my Day 6 Nature Photography Challenge on Facebook. 🙂 And keeping to my theme, it is a challenging image. Ice gets into all kinds of strange shapes, given the right weather! This is along the Mousam River at Roger’s Pond in Kennebunk Maine. It is a ground level macro shot, taken with the LCD flipped out.
Sony HX90V. In-camera HDR. Processed in Lightroom.
When I got to Roger’s Pond, in search of the elusive Kennebunk Eagles (elusive at least this year so far), this fisherman was just getting out of his car, and beginning to suit up. From the look of his gear, I suspect it was all brand new…Christmas presents even…and from the look of him when he got into the water, I suspect he is freshly outfitted for a new hobby. Then too, the river was unusually high with a flood tide…as high as I have ever seen it at Roger’s Pond which is generally a third of a mile above the tidal effect…and I have serious doubts as to the mood of the fish on this particular morning. And then, of course, it was snowing. Not that a little thing like snow stops the flyfishers on the Mousam.
Sony HX90V in Superior Auto. 62mm equivalent field of view. 1/80th @ ISO 80 @ f4.5. Processed in Lightroom.
“If your eye is generous, your whole being is full of light!” Jesus
I will admit to having a prejudice when it comes to Herring Gulls. Their behavior makes them hard to love. They are bullies: aggressive egg and chick eating, catch stealing, beach hogging, bullies. And yet I have to remind myself that their “bulliness” is in my eye as much, maybe more than, in their nature. They are what they are. They do what they do to survive, as any creature must. In order to see their beauty, I have to be unusually generous of eye. I have to withhold judgement, especially judgement by my own, very human, standards. And, really, withholding is not enough. To be truly generous I need to bypass judgement at its root…to see them, not with my human eye, but with the eye of the spirit…the creative eye of the creator who creates with love.
This image, taken along the Mousam River in Kennebunk, helps. The gull was standing on a snow covered rock in mid-stream, while the rushing rapids behind him threw sparkling droplets into the air. It is certainly the bird in all its glory, and I am just generous enough to see the beauty.
May the Good God grant us all, somewhere in our lives, such a rock to stand on…that even the least generous might sometimes see our beauty. Happy Sunday!
While looking for ice bells along the Mousam, I could not ignore the sheet ice at the edge of the river. I should say that the Mousam at Roger’s Pond is a long stretch of rapids…the last long stretch before the long slow slide to the sea. The river freezes right up to Roger’s Pond, and above the rapids and the dam in Kennebunk for miles. It is a popular spot for fly-fishermen year round. So the ice at the edge of the river is sculpted…or drawn in this case…by the rapidly moving water. I always find the forms that frozen water can take fascinating. The regularity, and the symmetry of the patterns speaks of an inherent order in the water that is certainly not evident when it is tumbling down the rapids of the river. (There is a poem in that sentence if I can let it out!).
Sony HX90V at 200mm equivalent field of view. 1/200th @ ISO 400 @ f6.3. Processed in Lightroom.