October 20, 2009

Apple Harvest


Apples. Beautiful news at this time of year, gracing produce stands and seasonal displays. Not only are they gorgeous to look at, in a wide variety of colors from lemony yellow to bright green to orange gold and dappled red, but they are so good to eat. At this time of year they are so crisp and fresh they snap as you bite into their lusciously tart sweetness.

There are so many ways to enjoy apples: fresh from the tree, baked into pies and crisps, cooked down into applesauce or apple butter, pressed into fresh cider. Hurled like the apples from the trees in "The Wizard of Oz" they make fair weapons, drenched in caramel they make sticky seasonal treats, polished and set on a teacher's desk they make a handsome offering, and piled in the window at the produce market they make an inviting subject to photograph.

These lovely, locally grown apples are a beautiful tribute to fall. Just a simple apple drenched in autumn sunlight can conjure up a thousand memories and associations. Filtered to smooth blemishes, add texture and introduce a dream-like quality, this image evokes the taste and smell of autumn along with the faces and personalities of times gone by. What a rich blessing in such a compact package!

October 14, 2009

Incantation


The sun was bright and falling warmly all around the house. Everywhere I looked the brightness illuminated something magnificent. Here there was an empty nutshell filled with pine needles. There I saw a leaf withered and crumbling with its delicate veins exposed like threads of lace. Along the walk were honeybees burying their heads in the scent of lavender. Lilacs bloomed neatly at the side of the house and in the front, by the stone patio, irises were unfolding their tightly rolled mantillas.

This single flower led the way. Unfurled and stretching out toward the stone circle it was at the height of its beauty. I took several shots to try and capture its perfectly formed blossom.

With some careful cropping I was able to isolate this iris against the backdrop of the stonework. I adjusted the contrast and filtered the image to bring out the lines of its petals and the echo in the stonework. Like wands directing the tracery in the stonework the leaves arc toward the circle in the background as this lovely iris leans into the magic of a beautiful afternoon.