More From the Preserve

This weekend I went back to the Nature Preserve at Calvin University. Mostly I went looking for lines, light, and shadows. Trees on a bright day are perfect.

Here are two images where the lines are on the ground–shadows in one and the pathway through the preserve on the other. One person was watching me with a puzzled look in his face, perhaps wondering what on earth I was interested in photographing.

Where trees provided the lines, I looked for clashing, or if you prefer, complementary lines. The three examples below also caught my attention because of the darker foregrounds and bright backgrounds.

Finally, for something a bit different, dots or spots and lines. Unlike the other images, it does not pull you into anything. It feels a bit more static. The background feels like it’s canvas. The picture just seems pretty. And that’s OK.

I’m not sure what, if anything, my images from the last two weeks amount to, other than that I’ve generally abstracted nature. The images are not about the content–nature–so much as the forms created by lines, light, shadows, and spots.

I enjoy doing this kind of photography because I find walking in wooded areas peaceful and relaxing, especially if there is the quiet sound of water or soft voices in the distance. But in my photographs I’m not really interested in nature itself.

These images, except the last one, feel to me like they are drawing me into the forest. The pathway one does so obviously. The path says, “Walk here.” But the lines and mix of light and shadow invite me in, in the other images, even where branches present a barrier. The third and fourth images, especially, feel alive with nature.

Enjoy the warm weather coming in the next few days. It’ll get cool again, I’m sure. And stay safe out there.

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