“Dead Maple on Reesor Road?” – Markham , Ontario
“Look at all the things around you, the immediate world around you. If you are alive, it will mean something to you, and if you care enough about photography, and if you know how to use it, you will want to photograph that meaningness.” – Paul Strand
I am reminded daily that I live in a living world. That world envelops me, nourishes me, sustains me. My eye picks up on subtle colours, a movement, some minor thing that stands out and gets my attention. As the quote above states so eloquently, these things mean something to me. These everyday scenes that fill our days which most people seem to pass by with some ingrained disregard.
In our ever busy world, I feel blessed that those moments do have meaning to me and that I can see them as a critical part of my world and experience. I’ve deliberately set out to share that meaning as best I can, through learning to become a better photographer, to convey meaningness by sharing those experiences here through images and words. My goal is to improve my ability and skills as a photographer, artist, and writer so that some of the meaning, richness, and joy that I take for my experiences can have similar meaning to others.
The image above was made a few years ago as I was driving home from an errand in a nearby town. It was a cold day in early January and the wind-whipped snow swirled in the fields like it was a living thing trying to escape the confines of the snowbanks.Most of the roadside grasses were already encased in a thick winter blanket, while a few hearty reeds bent in the wind. Among all this movement, a solitary maple, more dead than living, stood firmly and weathered the onslaught. Once more, when looking closely at what appeared to me, and was titled that way, as a dead tree, is still showing signs of life in a few of its branches, reminding me to be a better observer by slowing down and really understanding what I’m looking at.
Nikor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 112 mm
1/200 sec, F/7.1, ISO 200
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And yet it still stands. I hope I can be as steadfast.
There are many like it. They appear dead, but only a portion is dead, and the rest thrives, anchored to a lifeless shell.