a mobile destructive vortex of violently rotating winds
Every decision we make matters. Every decision from the simplest one to the most complex makes a difference. Each stop we made, every shot I took on our drive home, led us to the top of a hill as a tornado began forming. I watched this EF1 tornado form three minutes after the initial tuba disappeared back up into the cloud. It lasted maybe seven minutes until it roped out and disappeared back into the cloud. It destroyed a barn that had existed for over a hundred years. No lives lost, two legged or four.
The destination is never the most important part of our trips. I love that. And as cars sped by us parked by the side of the road I smiled thinking we’d just seen nature put on a show, and I’d captured it from start to finish. Was it a once in a lifetime shot? I don’t know that yet. But I’m glad we took the time to enjoy the moment. Don’t be in a rush. Every moment matters.
One can’t predict the weather more than a few days in advance.
It certainly hasn’t been boring and the saying of if you don’t like the weather, wait a minute has never been more true.
We have been pummeled with snow, not measured in inches, but in feet. Then, just for a little variety, with the temperature measuring 26 degrees it’s raining! How does that happen?
I’ve been one busy photographer lately; shifting gears constantly and balancing all of my favorite subject matter.
I’ve been volunteering at our local shelter catching wonderful moments with the dogs there. It has been fun and gratifying at the same time.
The skies have been at their best and after spotting and photographing a multiple halo event, renowned physicist Les Cowley of atoptics expressed his interest in writing about my images. I don’t think that I’ve ever had such an honor and I am thrilled that my images will be part of his extraordinary site.
Switch gears from plowing snow to freezing rain, beautiful and treacherous.
I’ve said this before but it bears repeating.
Photograph every day, get familiar with each function available in your camera.
Then when these moments present themselves you will know how to shoot them.
Open yourself up to opportunities and I promise they will come.
and weather. Nature is so powerful, so strong. Capturing its essence is not easy – your work becomes a dance with light and the weather. It takes you to a place within yourself.
The Cloud Appreciation Society believes that clouds are nature’s poetry and I would have to agree. I’ve embarked on a self guided study of them and the more I watch them the more disappointed I am to wake up to a “blue sky” day!
This day was filled with endless drama: rain, hail, wind, and the very occasional pop of light when the sun broke through.
If I hadn’t been sitting in my Jeep with the window rolled down and settings dialed in, I would have missed it. I’d been hoping for some lightning but that brief moment of sun worked to add the perfect highlight to my gray study of the lake.
Two things that were invaluable for my shooting set-up that I always have in my Jeep…a trash bag and a beanbag. The trash bag becomes a poor man’s raincoat for my camera and lens and the bean bag gets draped on my window ledge to hold my camera steady. Not always easy during stormy conditions.
Have a great week and remember: having your head in the clouds is a good thing!
If you’re ever at a loss for inspiration or direction I recommend spending some time thinking back on early childhood memories.
When I was very young I had one of those charts put out by The National Weather Service showing examples of different types of clouds. I find it as fascinating today as I did back then and over the past few years I have been slowly making my own cloud chart.
I woke up on this morning to a sky filled with what we grew up calling a mackerel sky. It was always an indication that the weather was about to change.
With these clouds came the chance that I might get one of the shots that I have been looking for…iridescent clouds. Conditions have to be just right for these to form; tiny ice crystals or water droplets causing light to be diffracted high up in these cirrocumulus clouds.
These were especially colorful as they moved in waves across the sky close to the sun’s edges and I remembered to take time not only to photograph them but simply lay back and enjoy them as they blew by.