THE ABBEY

Posted: February 26, 2013 in Cemeteries, Details, Fields, Photography, Snow, Wabi Sabi, White, Winter, Wisconsin
Tags: ,

St Norbert Abbey, De Pere, Wisconsin. Norbertine cemetery.

I’ve come here to take pictures before. It’s a quiet, meditative setting and I like the sense of shared brotherhood, death as the great equalizer. The markers are arranged in a soft curve, facing the back of the Abbey and I imagine that the spirits aren’t just resting, but are poised attentively, awaiting the call to service.

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I deliberately brought only the new 8-16mm lens with me, considering this outing as an assignment.  I’ve already discovered that the Sigma isn’t “Fritz the Wonder Lens,” performing magic tricks at my command. No, I have to learn to speak “Ultra Wide Angle” and work for what I get.

Damn.

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I’ve learned this:  you really need to get up close to your subject when you shoot. Even a couple of feet can create a deep foreground. Also, it is better if you are down low when you shoot.  For the picture above, I am lying on the ground, maybe 4 feet from the closest marker. (I thought it might be seriously disrespectful to stretch out on anyone’s grave…though I would have in a heartbeat if I could have been guaranteed no one would catch me!)

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I chose to finish all of these softly in keeping with the serenity of the setting.

Comments
  1. Sherry Campbell says:

    “Baby it’s cold outside.”

  2. Marjorie says:

    Especially find the third image moving….that’s true of the Potter’s Field images too. I am imagining you taking in cemeteries for small and similar shapes, spaces in perspective. Consider the Bay Settlement sisters in various states of dress…snow, that is.

    • Thank you, Marjorie–I hadn’t thought of the sisters plots. The snow is really an integral part of these pictures. I have visited the Potter’s Field in the summer and it is not visually arresting like it was after a storm.

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