Memories of 2012

Before I close out 2012 I thought I would share some of my favourite images from the past year. A couple of you might recognize some of them from previous post, but a few images might be new to you as well. It was fun reminiscing about road trips and the great times I had with my family while putting this post together. Hard to believe the year is over, but I guess as they say, time flies when you are having fun.

Hope you enjoy.

Evening Tide - Duck Cove, Brunswick

Evening Tide – Duck Cove, New Brunswick

Bladder Wrack - Saint John, New Brunswick

Bladder Wrack – Saint John, New Brunswick

East Quoddy Lighthouse on Campobello Island. Photograph taken from Deer Island.

East Quoddy Lighthouse on Campobello Island. Photograph taken from Deer Island, New Brunswick.

Sunset and Fishing Weirs - Campobello Island, New Brunswick

Sunset and Fishing Weirs – Campobello Island, New Brunswick

Weir and Seaweed - At high tide this shot wouldn't be possible. Knowing when to go made this image possible.

Weir and Seaweed – Mclaren’s Beach, New Brunswick

Sunset and Seagull - Campobello Island, New Brunswick

Sunset and Seagull – Campobello Island, New Brunswick

Passamaquoddy Bay and Sunset

Sunset, Seagulls and Sandstone – St. Andrews, New Brunswick

Seagull and Sunset

Seagull at Sunrise – St. Andrews, New Brunswick

Lookout - Passamaquoddy Bay, New Brunswick

The Lookout – Passamaquoddy Bay, New Brunswick

Piping Plover on The Passamaquoddy

Piping Plover on The Passamaquoddy – St. Andrews, New Brunswick

Harbour and Grey Seals on the rocks

Harbour and Grey Seals on the rocks – Passamaquoddy Bay, New Brunswick

Fall Breeze – Saint John, New Brunswick

Morning Flare – Red Head, New Brunswick

Angel on the Ocean – Red Head, New Brunswick

Cold and Turning Blue - Seaside Park, New Brunswick

Cold and Turning Blue – Seaside Park, New Brunswick

Seaside Park in the snow

Quaco Head Light House – St. Martins, New Brunswick

Seaside and snow - Seaside Park, Saint John, New Brunswick

Seaside and Snow – Seaside Park, New Brunswick

Haggertys Cove

Haggertys Cove – New River, New Brunswick

Radiance - Saint John, New Brunswick

Radiance – Black Beach, New Brunswick

Glen Falls - Saint John, New Brunswick

Glen Falls – Saint John, New Brunswick

Little Girls First Paddle - Long Reach, New Brunswick

Little Girls First Paddle – Long Reach, New Brunswick

The Bay of Fundy in Action - Saint John, New Brunswick

The Bay of Fundy in Action – Duck Cove, New Brunswick

Happy New Year! - Saint John, New Brunswick

Happy New Year! – Saint John Harbour, New Brunswick

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Falling For It

For some reason I’ve been looking forward to fall this year more than I ever have before. I think it has become a new challenge for me as I’ve started to see some amazing images from other photographers I follow. My anticipation also has something to do with the fact that, for whatever reason, I haven’t had a lot of success capturing really good images this time of year. Fall usually brings a very busy time for my family; back to school, the start of new activities for kids along with shorter days, so I don’t get outside as often as I would like.

I’ve typically found that fall is the most challenging of the seasons to photograph because of the short time colors are at their peak. The other seasons just feel longer. Snow in winter can last for four to six months on the East Coast of Canada. Summers are fairly long from May until mid September bringing lots of wildlife, sandy beaches and late-night sunsets. Spring can be from March until mid to late June, providing thawing ice and snow, new flowers and birds returning from winters away. When looking for the colors of leaves to change it is a bit of a guess for locations at times, depending on the proximity to the coastline line and elevation. Add to all this different tress change colors at different times and it becomes quite an exercise. Peak colors may only last a few weeks. Blink and you may miss it.

I read a story recently on CBC’s website that suggested capturing the fall colors could be even more challenging this year due to the unusual weather we’ve had in the early part of the year. A mild Winter and the dry Summer may make for less vibrant colors. The article also suggested that climate change could also be part of the reason that we aren’t seeing as much of the intense colors like we usually do. Early Springs and warmer Falls can impact the intensity of the leaves as they change. I have my own thoughts on climate change and I know that scientist on both sides have their opinions and will likely debate back and forth forever. With that being said, I feel that I can say with a fair amount of certainty, we are not helping the situation.

This past Saturday I had an hour to fill in while waiting for my son so I decided to visit a couple of local parks in the uptown area. The colors haven’t fully changed yet and the area is filled with lots of buildings and cars so it’s not the typical landscape image that I would try to capture. I thought I would experiment a little, push myself to work outside my “comfort zone” while still making every effort to get outside and photograph when I can this Fall. I took advantage of the hour and the end result didn’t provide that many keepers but I still consider it time well spent.

Sometimes I get so caught up in what I want the end result to be, I forget to enjoy the moment. I need to spend a little more time enjoying the journey and less time worrying about the end destination. I have to keep reminding myself that success with my photography isn’t about the image and whether or not I can sell it, but more about, what did I learn today. The same goes for rest of my life. It isn’t about getting to the next location as quickly as possible, it’s enjoying the place I’m at right now because just like the colorful leaves it won’t be here very long.

Time of Reflection

“God’s miracles are to be found in nature itself; the wind and waves, the wood that becomes a tree – all of these are explained biologically, but behind them is the hand of God.”   Ronald Reagan

Fall is a bitter sweet time for me. It means the end of hot summer nights, the end of beach combing days and late evening sunsets.  It means that winter is soon to arrive with snow and ice and minus 20 degree (minus 40 with the wind-chill) days.  But it also brings spectacular colors and frosty designs that come with the change of temperature.  It means I need to get out as much as possible with my family to enjoy a cool hike and all the sights and wildlife that summer foliage conceals. I’ll admit that with the onset of colder weather I become a little bear-like and take the odd photographic hibernation.

Park Point Reflection, Deer Island, New Brunswick

Through out the year I love to look for images of water or create images from reflections in the water. This is especially true in the fall with the change of season bringing bright colours, leafless trees and newly formed ice. The addition of fog coming off the local rivers and the Bay of Fundy add to the drama of the scene.  There is something magnetic about the water to me.  Maybe I feel this way because we humans have such a dependence on it.

Heron - Lunnenburg, Nova Scotia

The reflections in a body of water seem to not only enhance the image but also emphasize the fragility of the places we live.  It seems ironic sometimes as I read the news there are so many in the world who are in dire need of rain and others who wish it would just stop.   As I’ve said before, when I create an image it’s with the hope that the viewer has a greater appreciation of the gift that God has given us.  This is especially true for our water.

Fall Reflections - Musquash Marsh, Musquash, New Brunswick

Last fall I had the opportunity to spend several days working with an organization called Blue Legacy that was started by Alexandra Cousteau.  During the few days I spent with Alexandra and her group I heard several amazing stories about water issues around the world.  Some are still sad while others have the potential for a happy ending, but we’ll have to wait and see.  In one of her speeches, Alexandra gave a suggestion that I made the point to do with my family this past summer.  If you want to show your family that water is not an inexhaustible resource take them to the lake or watershed that fills your tap.  It was a great object lesson for my kids.  When they looked at the lake it may have seemed enormous but when I explained that 50,000 people all need to share it, it started to look a whole lot smaller.

Sunset Reflection - Mud Lake Bog, Quispamsis, New Brunswick

The process for taking a photograph is no longer only about depth of field, focal length, or shutter speed; they have become secondary. For me it is about the time of reflection and appreciating the gift we have been given.