A Weather Geek tries to Photograph a Snowstorm
June 06, 2013 • Leave a Comment
I love weather. It’s no secret that thunderstorms, snowstorms, lightning and tornadoes excite me. Living in Oklahoma for a lot of my life may have done this to me. I’m not sure. I do remember once being awakened by the tornado sirens when living in Duncan. I quickly pulled my shoes out of the floor of the closet and crawled in. That’s what you’re supposed to do. Find an inside closet and hide. I think I stayed in the closet about 30 seconds before heading to the front porch so I could watch. It’s just my nature to be a witness and record the marvels of our world…even if it may be a little life-threatening at times.
So, here in the high country we don’t really have tornados. You have to go down the the “Mile High City” to see those. Up here we have our own excitement with lots of snow and occasional wind. The wind up here tends to be more a Spring phenomena but on occasion comes with a snowstorm. A snowstorm with wind can be a treacherous and frightening event. It’s hard to drive or even walk when you can’t tell if you’re on a road, sidewalk or the middle of some rancher’s field, or worse. White-out conditions keep most people indoors but, of course, not me. This thrill-seeker-photographer enjoys the opportunity to be a first-hand witness and to see (and photograph) things that most folks would rather miss. Changes in weather provide brief but glorious views of our world that are real miracles of light, shadow, form, texture and tone that most people just aren’t going to witness. That’s why I’m here!
Actually capturing some of these changes can be a pretty miserable experience. Living in Oklahoma for 20+ years not only gave me my appreciation for weather but also for wind. I hate wind. If the breeze on my face never got over 10 mph for the rest of my life I would die a happy man. But first and foremost, I’m a photographer and it’s my job to show you the things I see in ways you may not….even if it involves wind. “Ghost Trees” is my latest effort from this winter. I had seen this arrangement of trees years ago but they’re in the middle of a golf course. The perfectly groomed fairways and greens just looked too manufactured for my taste, not to mention the condos and homes behind the trees. Well, the blowing snow took care of all the distractions of the scene leaving me with an ethereal arrangement of soft, muted subjects. It was just what I was hoping for.
Getting the image onto paper is another story. In my humble opinion as a print-maker for well over twenty years, there is no more difficult printing situation than an all white scene. The problem is that it’s not really white, it’s all grey. Conveying the mood of the scene to print is a huge challenge in tone and contrast, not to mention choice of papers and texture. Hopefully, I’ll get a print I’m happy with before someone wants to purchase it.
This just in: I’m on the Wait-List for a Colorado artists only show in downtown Denver over Memorial Day Weekend. Keeping my fingers crossed!
Keywords: Art, Photography, Technique, color, Colorado, Crested Butte, forest, Landscape, Photo, Photograph, Photographer, snow, The art of photography, weather, wind, winter, Winter
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