Last Post of the Year

The past year, like the one before it, has been weird. COVID-19, of course, Zombie-like. Crazy politics. Violent weather. Today, Christmas-day, it’s mid-afternoon and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. And COVID-19 wreaked my Christmas plans, as it has with countless other people. Without further ado, then, a few pictures.

This week’s images have no theme. I’ve got no project at the moment, comparable to the portraits of small-towns and villages I did this summer and fall. I’m trying to decide whether to pursue one this winter. That’ll depend on whether I think of something that works and holds my interest.

The first image is the winter-sleep or -death of plant life, this one from my front yard. I find the dead, decaying leaves more interesting and more beautiful even than the living green ones of spring, summer and fall. I think that true in general for landscape and nature photography for me.

The second image is more decay, from a shrub in my yard. I’ve processed it in a fairytale-like way, trying to give it an ethereal quality. This is not nature, but nature hacked and remade visually. It sort of works. I just slid sliders in Lightroom in extreme directions.

Finally, inspired by early morning fog and twilight, a gate with streetlights in the background. First a black and white version, done with my iPhone, then a color version from a slightly different angle with a “proper” camera.

Stay safe out there, while COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc here in the US and around a growing portion of the world. The new “Omicron” variation may herald a new stage if it’s as early research suggests both much more contagious and less lethal. I don’t know if this is a sign of the disease becoming endemic and just part of life. It’s still overwhelming health care systems, unlike typical flu viruses and coronaviruses. We’re not yet at a “new normal” with it, if “normal” entails some level of stability and security. I hope normal still entail stability and security. In any case, be smart and stay safe.

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