Foggy photos – A tree, a truck and nothin’

Quality time with my camera has been quite scarce of late. Between work and winter and taking care of kids and church activities and etc. my poor camera has been lonely. The feeling was mutual, I assure you.

But Saturday morning, my wife was kind enough to take the kids to an Easter egg hunt without me (she’s a brave lady), and I got out before sunrise with my old D60 and tripod to see what I could see. My coffee, muffin, doughnut and hash brown were comforting, if not healthful, companions as I headed out to rural Clay County, Minn. (I don’t think I got outside of Clay County, though, I admit that I wasn’t really paying attention to where I was going … Hey, that’s what the GPS is for, right?).

It was an excellent morning for a shoot. The thick fog gave the countryside a soft, unusual look, smoothing subject forms in varying degrees. Thanks at least in part to the low sun of the morning, there were some really nice silhouette opportunities. The combination of the ample coat of snow that’s still on the ground (Yes, on March 30 – Hey, it’s Fargo!) and the aforementioned fog worked together in expressing the vast, beautiful bleakness (for lack of a better word) of the landscape. Despite the snow, the temperature was comfortable enough so it was pleasant to be outside. In fact, later in the morning, I even rode with the windows down.

Here are three images I liked from Saturday’s outing, and I’m not finished reviewing the full set yet so I may find a couple of others that I feel are worth processing. It was a really fruitful day of photography … or at least it looks that way to me. I hope you enjoy them. I surely had a ball shooting them. (Click on an image for a larger view.)

The fog really helped me on this one by giving each of the three tree clumps in this image a distinct look, progressively softening each one. I was shooting toward the sun, and I set the white balance to cloudy (in processing … I think it was “Auto” when I shot it). Those two factors helped lend a sepia look to the image. It is not, however, a monochrome image.

As in the image above, I was shooting into the sun on this one. The morning light helped to lend a sepia look to this one too. I really like what the progressive softening affect of the fog does to the snow on the ground and the horizon line. My mom (who seems to really like my work) thought the snow looked like water. I can see that. I’m also pleased with the way the power poles “haze out” as they move into the distance.

This one sort of feels like an opposite of the other two. The blue hues of this image offer a complement to the yellow/orange of the previous two. The openness of the country in this part of the world has it’s own sort of beauty. The enormous vastness brings a sense of sublimity to the viewer that’s akin to the feeling of looking at a grand mountain or one of the Great Lakes. The fog helps white out whatever might otherwise have been on the horizon and emphasizes the bareness of this view, I think. The land almost blends into the sky, yet I’m glad there is that gentle line between the two that demonstrates the flatness of the locale.

Hope you enjoyed the images. If you did, you can check out some more of my photos here.