Friday, October 16, 2009

COLOR STILL SLOW

There's a pond up the road from here—an elongated bit of water, curved on one end into a shape resembling a fish hook. The "hook"segment is quite narrow, and surround by scrub woods. There are trees also growing right down to the water along one side of the pond's "shank" portion—though the opposite shore is mucky and shallow, with a wide band that can be either wet or dry, depending on recent rains; beyond this marshy flat, a low, wooded hill rises.
The pond doesn't see many visitors. It's a fair walk in from the road and there's no easy, distinct path. You have to know the pond is there and want to go; most folks don't. Which suits me just fine. I like the forsaken places.

Such neglect pleases the various waterfowl, too—the ducks and geese who regularly raise young here in the spring, and like to feed and loaf here the remainder of the year…at least when the water is open. Herons stalk the shallows. I've see the occasional kingfisher, and once, more than a decade ago, an osprey. And of course there's also the usual Ohio compliment of muskrats, mink, turtles, snakes, frogs, dragonflies, and birds of all sorts, from waders to warblers to woodpeckers. Whitetail deer, as well. And coyotes, raccoons, and possums, seeing as how we're making a list. But I, and maybe one or two like-minded human ramblers, are probably the rarest critters to amble the pond's parameter.

Soon after breakfast, I stole a few minutes from pressing work to make a quick check on the pond. The morning was dark and damp, 38F chilly degrees. The surrounding color wasn't as advanced as I'd expected—though another few days will doubtless make a big difference. When I visited a week ago the landscape was still practically all green.
For whatever reason there wasn't much in the way of wildlife to be seen. At least not by me today. No ducks or geese on the water, or great blue herons to squawk and startle from their fishing. Just a swath of dark water, a yellow-gold hillside, and an October sky the color of old pewter.
I did manage a few quick shots. I'm sure I could have found a lot of other things if I hadn't been so rushed. Making photos, like a lot of good and pleasurable things in life, is mostly a matter of persistence and patience. I can generally muster both. Unfortunately for me this morning, I just didn't have time.

16 comments:

Gail said...

HI GRIZZ-

I love the solitude of your journey this day - I too prefer 'roads less traveled'. Your photos captured the quiet, the still, the peace and beauty - of nature's silence. I felt quite energized.
I am sure you missed my last post where I share of a recent 'tumble' - I have been limited inmy ability to navigate the stairs to get on my computer since my knee is injured. sigh.......if you get a moment to read my last post I explain the experience.

Meanwhile - enjoy the silence and solitude of nature that surrounds you so beautifully.

Love Gail
peace.....

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Gail…

I had missed that post of yours! But I'll read it forthwith. More than anything, I'm sorry to hear you've taken a tumble…and sure hope you'll not be long on the mend.

Thank you for writing I'm glad you liked today's post.

Jenn Jilks said...

We have had such glorious colour, Griz.
And the heron have left us. Not many ducks and zero geese. But those dang 'coons!
It is a wonderful time of year. Glad you took the time to prioritize and do a bit of photography!

Bernie said...

Between you and Wanda I am beginning to learn more of your beautiful State, Ohio. It looks and sounds like a wonderful, peaceful and serene place to live.
I can feel the love you both have for your State. I just have to thank you both for expanding my knowledge.
So glad you have warmed up, physically at least and you sound so much better in this post. I love hearing all my friends happy.
Have a great day......:-) Hugs

KGMom said...

That one photo--with all the reflected green--is most deceptive. Pull it out of this particular post, set it down in one of a summer's day, and the reader could be fooled.
I love that stunning leaf--jewel-like in its shades.
Ah, nature, bringing us the best, and then chasing it away too too soon.

The Solitary Walker said...

I like the forsaken places too.

Hey, those hurried shots were fine! Specially the last two - loved the leaf colour in these.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Jenn…

Because the river stays open all year—at least the faster sections—my herons usually hang around, often standing on an ice shelf to fish. Ducks and geese keep them company. I don't know if these gray, rainy days are going to kill the color or not, though.

Hey, I had to get out for a little while!

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Bernie…

Well, I expect both Wanda and I make sure we photograph our state's best sides. There are plenty of ugly places here, places you wouldn't want to live—not so much because the actual land is ugly (or was always ugly), but because of what urbanization and industry and similar related problems have done. I wish I could have seen this country about 200 years ago…now that would have been something! And there are still way more lovely, lovely places around than most people might imagine.

I have warmed up today, thanks in no small part, I expect, from several large bowls of homemade soup!

Hope you're staying warm and happy up there, too!

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

KGMom…

Here's the honest scoop on that photo…the one with those yellow-green bushes, and the one with the five large trees smack in the water, are piece of the same bank not more than 25 feet apart. The trees is a tighter zoom-in shot; the yellow-green bushes slightly wider angle.

I'm a sucker for shots of leaves on the ground—I've always loved seeing and taking them and usually take dozens every time I'm out, especially in the fall. Something about them as a still-life really appeals to me. I have no idea why.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Solitary…

My photo time was too short and too hurried—but the shots turned out better than I expected. Often when I get in a rush, I just mess 'em all up, start to finish—even though you'd think it wasn't possible to miss-focus on leaves and such that are perfectly still. I mean 1/500th of a second is not too awfully long to hold your body in one place.

I love ferreting out the places others ignore or neglect or write off—even if they're not all that much to look at once you do get there. It seems like you can always find at least a few redeeming features—a scene or two, an uncommon plant or animal, a mysterious little glen where if you let your imagination loose for a moment, you can conjure up all sorts of scenarios. It probably is some part of me that never grew up that gravitates to such spots.

Scattering Lupines said...

"For whatever reason there wasn't much in the way of wildlife to be seen. At least not by me today."

This stood out to me as a profound statement! I love the simple way you put things, laced with a tone of wisdom. At least, that's the way it reads to me.

And, yes, photographing DOES take a long time. My husband loves it when we go places and I forget my camera or it goes dead. He says, "Good. Now you can use your SENSES to remember this place."

Jayne said...

Our color is very slowing inching in here as well. I love how you take us along with you in your words Grizz. It's such a pleasure to walk with you.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Scattering Lupines…

I don't know whether I'm ever profound or wise. I live around me and know how ridiculous and superficial I can be with deplorable regularity. But I do try and write with honesty.

There are times and places where I'm not sure if it's me or the moment. Was it true that the pond was mostly devoid of birds and wildlife yesterday morning…or was it just me failing to see? I don't know. If there's an obvious bit of wisdom in my statement, perhaps it's that I've finally figured out I might actually be the guilty party.

Now here's what you say to your husband the next time he rags on you about your photography…tell him your memory and senses work just fine; you're not trying to use photography to bolster either—you're using it to fulfill your creative urges, that artistic corner of your soul which he, being a mere Philistine (smile sweetly when you call him this) is probably not capable of understanding, not having such a imaginative and discerning need.

If nothing else, it will take him a while to decide whether he's been insulted. :-)

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Jayne…

Thank you. I'm glad you enjoy the little adventures.

The color here still isn't what You'd call peak—or at least not what I'd call peak. Maybe this is just one of those years where it doesn't get brighter. But seems like most of the reds really haven't materialized yet. Looking up the river, the scene isn't much different than it was a week, two weeks, even three weeks ago.

The Weaver of Grass said...

I like the quiet places which hardly anyone knows about too. Your photos convey the solitude and peace very well. Interesting that you once saw an osprey. A friend was sitting on the River Ure bank near here a few weeks ago, just quietly contemplating when she heard a splash - it was a teenage osprey fishing - what a treat. Have a lovely weekend - hope you are warm again now. Youi were so cold I wondered if you were going down with flu or something. Do hope not.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Weaver…

As soon as I finish this comment, I'm going to head to one of those quiet, forgotten places forthwith for a long ramble.

Actually, ospreys aren't too uncommon spring and fall migrants around here. I usually see at least one or two during my days afield each year, always around water.

Re. being cold a few days ago…I thought I might be coming down with something, myself. I'd had a seasonal flu shot a few days earlier (I'll likely get an H1N1 vaccination soon) but think I was just run down—not enough sleep, protein, and exercise. I feel fine now.