How the Art Happens - Winter Blues

February 05, 2020  •  1 Comment

Winter Blues

Winter BluesWinter BluesSparkles and Aspen shadows create abstract patterns on fresh Colorado snow in this Colorado landscape photograph.

It's been cold in Crested Butte this winter. I know that's exactly what we should expect, living at 9,000' above sea level. But, it's been colder than we usually expect. It's been so cold that people are starting to talk (complain). Even some of the long-time, local, rancher types are grumbling a bit. It seems a little odd since last winter was much warmer than usual. Mother Nature is a fickle woman sometimes!

Cold temperatures bring some new opportunities for photographers. First, we get to wear all of our cold-weather gear... at the same time. We get to wear multiple pairs of gloves and the boots are never warm enough to stay out as long as we want. Warm hats mess up our hair and just get in the way. Then, there are subjects like hoar frost and sparkly snow. Fresh snow can acquire a layer of fresh ice crystals when it's really cold that can add another dimension to an image.

A few years ago I was meeting portrait clients at their home at the Red Mountain Ranch area south of Crested Butte. I had no idea how long it would take me to get there and when I found their home, I was about half an hour early. Not wanting to be a jerk, I decided to drive around the development "cruising for snaps". I rarely have this opportunity in this area since it's gated, secluded, and very private. The temperature was about -20. The snow was fresh, deep, and sparkling. I needed to find a subject. The area is heavily wooded with few open fields or vistas. It took some time but I eventually found the scene above that I call "Winter Blues". I just love the suggestion of the surrounding forest caused by the shadows as well as the gentle curve of the valley running up the hill. I included the base of the trees to suggest the reason for the other shadows and to provide a bit of contrast to the, otherwise low-contrast, scene. This photograph is a constant reminder to me of the quiet and abstract beauty of a winter mountain environment. It feels cold but peaceful.

This photograph was chosen a while back by the Alpenglow Gallery in the Lodge at Mountaineer Square for an exhibition sporting the same name, "Winter Blues". I still have the original 30" x 48" canvas photograph available from the "studio inventory" tab above.


I love the story and your series. I know it takes time to write but it adds a lot to your already beautiful photographs. Thanks.
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Crested Butte, Colorado photographer, Dusty Demerson creates fine art photography displayed as prints and canvases and provides private photo tours in and around western Colorado.

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