The end of a cold winter

“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields that it kisses them so gently ?  And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt, and perhaps it says “go to sleep darlings, till the summer comes again ”  Lewis Carroll.

This winter was very cold.  Most days were -20°C and I didn’t go out much on photographic excursions.  Now Spring is at our doors and before concentrating on flower photography and verdant landscapes I’d like to share these two images I took last December, a few days before Christmas.

It was a peaceful end of afternoon.  The only sounds were coming from my snowshoes sinking in the snow and, occasionally, from a little chickadee’s distinct whistle.  I could hear, way up above me, tree branches cracking in the wind.  I would stop, looking in the distance, observing, listening.  Silence, solitude, peace…

IMGP6139 Sous-exposée.  Essayer dans Camera raw de corriger 2 split toning red.72 ppi 4

Enchantment and gratitude to witness this beautiful end of afternoon.  You can see this photo with a better image quality here.  Scroll down if you’re interested to read a Behind The Lens story I wrote.

IMGP 6144 choisi Blog

We are now at the first days of Spring and it’s always with a bit of regret that I see the end of winter coming.  But at the first notes of the song sparrow I know I’ll be ready for Spring.

A beautiful weekend to all of you !

 

 

The life of a tree

Sitting quietly under a tree on a beautiful Summer day, hearing the soft rustling sound of the leaves in the breeze.

Crossing an open field on a bitter cold winter’s day and taking shelter from the harsh cold wind at the edge of the forest.

Admiring birds perching in a nearby tree.

Walking a trail in the woods under a canopy of trees, feeling at peace and united with nature.

Leaning against the trunk of a tree, embracing it and sensing its healing energy flowing in.

What would we do, what would we become without trees ?  We need them to survive much more than we think we do.

One of my favourite scientist and environmentalist David Suzuki wrote, along with writer Wayne Grady, a wonderful book about the life story of a tree, from it’s beginnings as a seed and expanding through the tree’s lifetime.  Suzuki and Grady describe how the tree grows and receives nourishment and what role the tree plays in the forest throughout its life. It acts as a home to a succession of creatures and plays a crucial role in the water cycle, in breaking rock down into soil, and in removing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. Even after the tree dies, it provides a home for moss, ferns, and other plants, which use the tree as a nurse log, and it provides nutrients for insects and fungi. Tree also looks at the community of organisms that share the tree’s ecosystem and at the events going on in the larger world during the tree’s lifetime.

I went for a long walk a few weeks ago and was captivated by the great beauty of an old maple tree.

#maple tree #trees #érable #arbre

I took more photos of trees that day

#trees #arbres

#trees, #arbres, #winter #hiver

If you are interested in David Suzuki’s book “Tree A Life Story”, click here to go to his website and learn more about it.  I haven’t read it yet but I surely will.

I hope the weather will warm up here so we can really embrace Spring and see all the snow disappearing. We still have a lot here.  I wish you all a wonderful week !

Jocelyne

 

Winter scenes

I know many people are tired of winter at this point.  But me, I’m not !  I love winter and I think it’s as beautiful and great as summer.  Even when I freeze my hands and toes when I go cross-country skiing or venture out for photos opportunities.  And even when I get caught in a blizzard.  It happened a few weeks ago as I was taking a walk with my dog.  Suddenly, and out of the blue, strong winds were blowing and snow was swirling and lashing my face, I couldn’t see neither earth or sky and I could barely walk.  I was enveloped in a muffled, furious and  white swirling cloud and it felt as if I was in another world.  In some ways it was beautiful and I loved it all !  I love to feel nature’s pulse and power, it sharpens the senses and make me feel more alive.  I had a black coat and when I arrived home it was completely white  🙂

Here are some winter scenes I captured recently.

St-Joseph de Beauce

St-Joseph de Beauce

A beautiful scene in front of my house

#winter scenery #paysage d'hiver #snow #neige

Hockey time !

#hockey #winter #hiver

St-Joseph de Beauce

DSC_2541 PS CE 14 red.900

I’m happy, It’s snowing today.  A beautiful week to all of you dear friends !

Jocelyne

Behind the scene of an image

I love this photo so much.  Yet, there’s nothing spectacular about it, nothing to be amazed of.  Only a barn and a snow-covered field.  But, for me, it represents something that I really love.  The country.

IMGP5181 Exposure blending red.900  tout le kit et grange -noir 2

I must love this photo a lot to have spent 6 hours only to remove two trees in the foreground.  These trees were spoiling the composition.  They were going all the way from the bushes to the barn, to the tree and into the sky.  When removing the trunks and branches it would leave some marks so I had to work these areas by drawing branches in the bushes, planks on the side and lines on the roof of the barn and many of the tiny little branches on the tree.  I had to paint colours in the sky and shadows on the snow near the barn.  I knew this would be very time-consuming getting rid of those trees and at first I didn’t want to work on this, but I just couldn’t let it go…   So it was many hours to restore this image and only then I could edit the rest of it.   This image is a blending of three different exposures using luminosity masks in Photoshop.  Christopher O’Donnell wrote a tutorial on how to work with luminosity masks, click here to read it.  It didn’t go exactly as how he explains it in his tutorial so I’ll have to practice this technique again.

I also love this photo with a more vintage look

IMGP5181 Exposure blending red.900 sharp 2 vintage DJpeg - noir 2

We’re having a little break from the cold spell, here’s a photo of Winny playing in the snow during one of these polar colds.

IMGP5093 PS CE Red.900 sharp 2 + clair 3

And since I’m ending this post with a photo of my dog, I’m sharing a link to a wonderful slide show from professional photographer Julie Clegg’s from Bailey & Banjo.  If you love dogs this will put a smile on your face, guaranteed !  (Thanks Janina for sending me this link 🙂 )  Click here for the slide show.

I wish you all a wonderful week.  Be happy, be sweet, laugh a lot, smile and dance in the rain or in the snow !

Jocelyne

Seeing beauty in simple things

What I love about photography is how we can bring out subtle details  we don’t always notice.  How we can reveal and really see the essence, the uniqueness,  the intricate perfection and exquisiteness of simple things like branches and weeds.  And sometimes, when we look with the eyes of the heart, perceiving the pureness and the spark of life within them.  How sublime is mother nature, how interconnected we are with her.  And us and these little branches and weeds have something in common. We come from the same source…

#cedar #branches #cèdre

#tree branches #branches d'arbres

#tree branches #branches d'arbres

#weeds

A beautiful week to you dear friends 🙂

Jocelyne

Wonderful winter

Hello dear friends  🙂

Last October, as I marvelled at the spectacular colours of fall, I remember thinking there wouldn’t be anything interesting to photograph in the coming months.  After all the vibrant colours of summer and fall, winter seemed, photographically speaking, a little boring with all its white.  I thought that all the excitement of going on excursions to find new places and landscapes to photograph would be much less fun, because I thought winter wasn’t visually as interesting as the other seasons.  I was almost ready to hibernate and rely on still life till spring.  But… I had forgotten one thing.  I had new eyes now, and I wasn’t seeing the world around me as I used to.   Everywhere I look now there are more details, more richness and nuances in colours, more textures.  But the biggest improvement is the light.  I see it everywhere now and the amazing transformation it can induce when it is illuminating something.  Photography has this capacity to heighten and broaden our sight and I would never go back to how I looked at the world before.

Duncan meeting new friends

Duncan meet new friends.  Percherons horses

After having completed my first round of the four seasons with my camera, I realize how wrong I was and how winter photography is as fun and exciting as the other seasons.  Winter is definitely the most challenging season to photograph, both technically and physically, but despite its challenges it is a really  wonderful season and one that I greatly enjoy photographing.

The sugar shack Chez Jaco, St-Joseph De Beauce.

Chez Jaco, St-Joseph de Beauce.  The sugar shack

Chez Jaco, St-Joseph De Beauce

Chez Jaco, St-Joseph De Beauce.  Winter photography

The heart of the village.  St-Joseph De Beauce

The heart of the village.  St-Joseph De Beauce.  Winter photography. Village in winter

A cabin at St-Simon Les Mines

A cabin at St-Simon Les Mines.  Winter photography. Cabin in winter

An abandoned old house, St-Simon Les Mines

An abandoned old house, St-Simon Les Mines.  Winter photography.  Old house in winter.  Heritage homes

Winter hasn’t yet said its last word, as we received 20 cm of snow yesterday.  I’m ready for spring but I didn’t mind this snow, it’s so beautiful !

Next week I’m going to Montreal’s botanical garden where they are exhibiting “Butterflies go free”and I hope to come back with photos of gorgeous flowers and wonderful butterflies.  The butterfly I’m most interested in, and of which I really hope to capture its exquisite beauty, is the morpho, the blue butterfly.  I’ve seen it once and it’s an amazing butterfly !  Hopefully I’ll come back home with a few beautiful shots to share with you.

Until then, have a nice end of week and week-end !

Jocelyne