As I chase Spring in search of wildflowers, critters and other natural phenomena, I am reminded of something special that is often a backdrop for more popular subjects rather than the main attraction. Artists and photographers know it well, and they also know the challenge of capturing its stunning, ephemeral beauty at the right time and place. I’m referring to the palette of fresh, spring greens that appears as plants emerge from dormancy.
These images, in chronological order over a period of about two weeks, are my most recent attempt to capture “green-up” in Central New York.
Aspen clone (May 4)
Wild apple tree bloom and woody plant leaf development (1 of 2; May 10)
Dairy farm (May12)
Sugar maple foliage (May 14)
Canada geese in a field of barley (a gang of newly hatched goslings at her feet; May 15)
Most of our corn fields have been harvested and miles of tawny stubble now dominate rural landscapes. The dormant fields are exposed, as are the flocks of birds searching for waste grain to fatten up for winter or migratory flights. Where fields occur near surface waters, large flocks of foraging geese are an inescapable landscape element.
The maple-dominated woodlands of Central New York have been beautiful this week! Sugar Maple and associated deciduous trees are presenting their true colors in a flaming palette of warm and vibrant colors.
“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” – L. M. Montgomery
Aided by warm sunny weather and the absence of strong winds and precipitation, fall foliage colors were brilliant last week. I love this season and cherish the moments when everything comes together – colors, lighting, moisture, stillness – to support the many “flaming foliage” festivals and “leaf-peeping” activities that occur throughout the Northeast. This type of ecotourism can be simple, cheap and highly rewarding outdoor recreation.
This year’s theme came to me as I drove the back roads of Central New York, admiring the rural landscapes that still characterize much of the region. These landscapes are not held in the public trust as “forever wild”. They are private lands, lands that are vulnerable to development and changing rapidly. Natural scenes with high visual quality are, in fact, an endangered resource that is disappearing virtually overnight. Hence, my theme: preservation and advocacy via a photographic record.