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A sycamore tree beside a lake reaches with bare limbs toward the warmth and light of the winter sun. It’s almost like an open and welcoming embrace by those white tree limbs. The ice had recently thawed from the lake and the rippled water reflected the clouds above. To be sure, standing in the chilly winter wind to create this shot made me glad of that little bit of warm sunlight too.
On this great sky day, the clouds were floating high and fluffy. They moved very slowly like a herd of fat, lazy white hippos across the sky. Needing strong direct light for the infrared to work well, I had to wait for a good stretch as one of those fat hippos moved slowly across the sky. Soon the sun was back out, the wind fell off, and I had my chance to shoot several frames. As photo fortune would have it, that light made the bare white limbs of this sycamore tree stand out even more.
Clouds are important to landscape pictures, especially in infrared photography. They let the light through or block it…they give the light and take it away. There’s just no sense in getting uptight and in a hurry, it’s Mother Nature calling the shots when shooting outside. You’re actually along for her ride whether or not you’ll admit it. Sometimes, all you can do is wait. Best to grease up your patience.
In this black and white infrared picture, both the sky and water have gone black with the rest in varying intensities of white. Every year, the middle of March is the tail-end rump of winter with everything still drab and brown. It’s very dull to the eye. Yet, soon Spring comes to bust out in glorious green. I’ve found that drab time is great for shooting black and white, especially in the infrared I love.
If you like this infrared shot, there’s also another horizontal view of two sycamore trees along this lakeshore titled Two Dancers #14896.
Location: near Hollidaysburg, Blair County, Pennsylvania. Picture and text © Andrew Dierks
Up Next: Straight On Through #14883