My last post, “Frozen Fall Creek I”, ended with macros of Ice Crystals on a bed of frost over creek ice within sight of our former home, a restored water mill. I continued on the ice, following the creek to this spot were the stream bed turns 90 degrees, changing from a southerly to a western flow.
Here I encountered an open course where constant water motion resisted freezing. A few frigid days later, the course had an amazing transformation.
Click any photograph for a larger version.
The transparent ice of the now frozen space retained the impression of movement, the surface rippled by current. In the following photograph, motionless ice crystals reveal the truth.
In the intervening days, the constant motion resisted freezing while the water temperature dropped well past freezing to achieve a supercooled state. As the water temperature continued to drop, a fast transition from fluid to solid happened so quickly the movement of the water surface was preserved.
Here is the matching “after” photograph to the “before” that started this post.
Where would we be without Saint Patrick? He was a force, to be sure. A favorite story, is the landing of his return to the island 432 AD. The tides on the eastern coast of the Irish Sea can be strong. His plan was to sail up to coast further north than what we call today Strangford Lough. On passing this inlet the boat was swept into the lough tidal narrows. Circumstances called for a landing, rather than wait for the tide. Patrick came ashore where the Slaney River enter the lough and “quickly converted” the local chieftan, Dichu, who provided a barn for holding services. The name of the town “Saul” in Irish is Sabhall Phádraig, translated as “Patrick’s Barn.”
In this posting I’ll go lighter on descriptions of technique. Leave it to say I held to the Canon fixed lens EF 50mm f1.2L USM throughout. Some, like the photograph of Saint Patrick, used a tripod. Others, like the latter two of the following Irish Themed Cross set were handheld. Generally a flash was used to supplement ambient sunlight from a large north-facing bay window.
Here the “celtic” cross is converted to an Irish theme through a substitution of a shamrock with golden decoration inspired by pagan neolithic petroglyphs for the nimbus (circle) intersecting the central intersection of arms and stem.
For the first three I played with aperture, taking advantage of the stability of a tripod. The final two of the set are handheld.
Note the fanciful leprechaun snowman with pot o’ gold, on the left.
Blown glass Irish dancers.
the suitcase for our 2014 tour of the island and re-connection with family. Also a symbol of our ancestors travel across the Atlantic ocean to North America.
My dear wife Pam is the heart of Christmas in our home. Over the years we have collected a treasure of ornaments and knick-knacks she crafts into displays around our one. Pam completed the project well in advance of our grandchild holiday visits, before card writing and gift wrapping.
My contribution is a photographic time capsule. Here is some of my artistic output from this work.
This grouping of five cozy snowmen (three males, two females) are warmly dressed in knit sweaters and stocking caps; the women with long skirts. The five hold hands in a ring, rising from a common platform. We place a cup and devotional candle in the center.
The tiny group evokes community, harmony, amity. I captured them with a Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III dslr, a fixed Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L macro lens mounted on a Manfrotto studio tripod and hydrostatic ball head. Fixed lenses provide the sharpest macros. The mounting allowed precise framing and use of the widest aperture and a low ISO. The light sources were sunlight from a large north facing bay window, a Canon Speedlite 600Ex-Rt and the candle. When used, the flash was angled in various ways toward the ceiling.
I start with a tight shot, maximum aperture. A single figure is in clear focus, the remaining gradually lost in the bokeh. The flash was used. I can almost see then circling around the candle in a winter wind.
Here the candle is lighted, aperture narrow to f8 using only the candle and ambient light (no flash). The group is visible within surrounding figures. I backed away and the viewpoint is higher.
The candle light enhances the perception of community.
Viewpoint is closer, still only the candle and ambient light. Aperture widened to 3.5. I must remove the hair in lightroom.
I backed off, aperture at the max with only the candle and ambient light. The figures are placed in a tableau with other snowmen and a structure, a birdhouse.
For this overview I swapped in a Canon 24mm f/1.4L II USM with a flash, aperture f2.2.
Copyright 2020 Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved
For the final post of this series on Cereus blooms, of the four buds two failed to fully open after the weather turned cold in late September/Early October. Here is the failed bloom from the same opening bud featured in the last Cereus posting.
In an earlier posts the popular name of this plant, “Night Blooming Cereus” was introduced as incorrect, still there must be some truth in the name, I believe it is found in the developing flower stalk and bud.
“Cereus” is from the Greek word for candle. Don’t these developing flower stalks, resemble a candle and the bud a flame?
Click image for a larger version.
Here’s the flower from an earlier bloom this season.