Archive for the ‘Snow’ Category

Petite wet-snow blizzard Friday afternoon. It was like shooting in the rain.

fresh tracks B

fresh tracks 2

fresh tracks 3

fresh tracks 5

I’ve driven over this little overpass a few zillion times in my life, but it never occurred to me to stop until I caught a glimpse of it in the storm on Friday.

Just when we think our lives are settled and predictable, circumstances can change abruptly,  rocketing  our complacent selves into a whole new narrative. That doesn’t mean bad things are happening in Wabi Sabi land, but an unexpected turn of events has switched us all onto a wildly different track. I put aside my camera for a while, something I haven’t done in years, but I’m thinking it’s maybe safe to quietly exhale now.  Even new narratives should yield a little creative space.

Hmmm…maybe I should buy a new lens. Major metaphoric statement, yes?

mpls

What? No sinuous smoke-dances curling across the page?

We will return to industrial grit shortly but I was so delighted with this picture, that I had to share immediately.

This is on East Shore Drive where it passes between Bay Beach and the Wildlife Sanctuary.  Every time I see this orange barrel in the snow I think “I really need to stop and catch this picture.” So, a few days ago, on my way to shoot some more towers and steam, I did just that.

Fast forward a couple of days and I am playing with this shot and it has turned out much better than I’d thought it would. I blow it WAY up and see all these small-but-bright color flashes scattered through the trees. “Oh, poo,” thought I. “Some kind of lens flaring? Tropical birds? Gang turf marking?”

By the time I checked out the third brilliant blip, it was my Eureka! moment.

View this as large as you can on your screen and check out the yellow spots in the trees.

bobber time

If you can read the sign posted near the lagoon, you will see that this is designated as an “urban fishing” spot and trust me, these banks have lots of folks fishing from them all summer long.

Recognize those yellow and red things now?

This picture makes me genuinely happy and every time I look at it, I break out in a smile. I’m going to go back and try to shoot it same-but-better, but I suspect that the serendipity factor just can’t be improved upon.

I’ve been out four times now,  going from paper mill to cement factory to the Pulliam Plant and back to some more paper mills, questing for steam and smoke. Only sheer will power is keeping me in the house today.

This particular set is finished just a little differently than usual. I’ve chosen to crop down to relatively small details with some–I think–interesting results.

steam art3

While I prefer the first image, a little further cropping brings us to the following: “Winter Bar Graph.”

bar graph

steam art2

steam art 4

steam art1

And now, a shout-out to Mother Nature, supplier of organic lens filters. This last shot is very grainy because Saturday was thick and gray and I was shooting through snowfall.  I like the effect.

steam art5

Be forewarned: I have more.

Yes. It is still cold here.

marina

Facing the Bay, Pulliam Plant to my left.

I believe I have mentioned the heart-breaking soul-numbing mind-bending cold we’ve been experiencing here. These shots were taken this morning before noon. I am back in the house now and have no intention of leaving again until Wednesday morning when I have to (gasp!) go to work. (Weather note: temps with wind chill are expected to hit nearly -50 F after midnight tonight.)

smoke2

The tower you see in this picture is the Pulliam Plant with the Tower Drive Bridge (now open to traffic!) in front.

More on the Pulliam Plant in upcoming posts. I really went out today with the determination to get some good shots at that site, and I think I may have succeeded.

But then I got caught up in chasing smokestacks. The next shots are from a paper mill and a cement company.

stylized smoke

smoke5

smoke4

Nothing says Arctic Blast like the vast acreage of  steam around mills and power plants.