Aerial Abstracts

Abstract art uses color, shape and line to create a pleasing image. That image may or may not represent something real. In photography, you arrive at the result through a different route. You find a candidate and create a composition that emphasizes the pattern created by the color, shape and/or line over the subject itself.

I am a primarily a landscape photographer. As I progressed and learned more about that art, I became fascinated with the questions about how a scene evolved; what processes shaped it in the past and what processes are shaping it today. As I observed, I began to see the patterns and to understand how to recognize the effects of the wind, water and tectonic events that influenced it.  I also began to see how the patterns repeated themselves in different ways in different objects. It is those patterns that often make a wonderful abstract image.

On a recent cross-country trip, we flew over the high plains of Kansas and the foothills and peaks of the Rocky Mountains. In many places the snowpack was broken; ice and snow lay in the crevices where snowmelt flows, while the remaining surfaces were clear. I was struck by the patterns that I saw. Erosion created patterns like those of a bush branching or leaves branching on a stem. In one spot, I saw a fish backbone with its tiny ribs extended. Using my trusty phone camera, through an airplane window, I created some abstracts from the landscapes I love.

I hope you enjoy these images. Reflect on the patterns – what do you see?

Regards

Larry

Note: Click on Caption to see larger, higher resolution image

These and other images are available for purchase at http://www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting me at larry@earthwatcher.us.

These and other images are available for purchase at www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting me at larry@earthwatcher.us.

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Lava Fields in Iceland

I was intrigued by the Lava Fields that I saw in Iceland last summer. A lava field, or lava bed, is a flat plain over which lava flowed and cooled. The ones that intrigued me the most were those that looked like rocks strewn at random. But what really caught my eye was how nature found a way to turn this area of desolation into a soft blanket of green. Lichens took over and attached themselves to the rock. Low shrubs invaded and even a clump of trees found a way to survive. The images I am sharing attempt to convey the beauty of these features. I hope you enjoy them.

Regards,

Larry

Note: Click on caption to see larger, high resolution copy of image.

Note: These and other images are available for purchase at my website: www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us.

Some Less Photographed Perspectives of Yosemite

We recently visited Yosemite National Park. On the day we visited, I decided to look for perspectives that aren’t commonly photographed. I love the iconic images but there are lots of nooks and crannies that provide wonderful landscapes. I hope you enjoy these images.

Regards,

Larry

Note: Click on caption to see image at larger size.

Note: These and other images are available for purchase at my website: www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us.

Less Common views from Sacramento and Colusa National Wildlife Reserve

Our visit to the Sacramento and Colusa National Wildlife Refuges found us in fog an low light. These conditions make photography more difficult but also present some interesting opportunities for unique and special images. Additionally, on this visit, we were treated to some birds that we don’t normally see. I hope you enjoy these images.

Regards,

Larry

Note: Please click on caption to see image in larger size.

Note: These and other images are available for purchase on my website www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us.

Autumn Images

Autumn Sunrise at Twin Lakes

Autumn Sunrise at Twin Lakes, Twin Lakes, Bridgeport, CA; OCT 2017

As winter approaches, it is time to share some of the autumn images I collected over the past few months.

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Augusta Riverwalk, Savannah River, Augusta, GA; NOV 2017

These and other images are available at purchase at www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us

Almannagjá Ravine

Politically, Iceland is considered part of Europe. Geologically, though, it is a very different situation. Iceland sits atop the mid-Atlantic ridge. The ridge is a chain of volcanic mountains, mostly under the Atlantic Ocean that stretches most of the way between the North and South Poles. It is the dividing line between the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates. As the volcanos erupt, the lava causes the Atlantic Ocean to become wider, pushing North and South America westward and Europe and Africa eastward.
The Almannagjá Ravine is a crack or rift between the North American and Eurasian plates that is located in Þingvellir National Park It is a small part of the section of the mid-Atlantic ridge that runs northeast to southwest through Iceland. It geologically, marks the boundary between Europe and North America.
These images were taken in the Almannagjá Ravine. As you look at them, the walls to the left are in Europe and those on the right are in North America. For geology geeks like my wife and I, it is truly amazing to be able to stand on the mid-Atlantic ridge and to be able to walk between Europe and North America.
In 930, Iceland established its parliament in Þingvellir, near this location. Sessions were held there until 1800.

I hope you enjoy these images.

Regards,

Larry

Note: Click on caption to see images in higher resolution and larger size.

These and other images are available to purchase at my website www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us

 

An Adventure in Iceland, SEP 2017

When I close my eyes and picture Iceland, I think of coastal plains lying between the ocean and tall cliff sides. At some places, the plains are grass covered, at other places they are filled with jagged black lava. The cliff sides are impressively tall and massive. They are green with vegetation and filled with outcrops of volcanic basalt. All along the cliff sides, waterfalls appear at frequent intervals. Free range sheep, in small groups, dot the hillsides. Oceanside beaches are black from the volcanic rock and sand.

Glacier melt from the ice covered volcanic mountains creates many, many small streams. These streams drop in long thin ribbons of white from the cliffside. Where they hit the plain, they cut small streams that meander their way to the oceans. In September, the streams flow through gullies in their rocky beds. But, I am told, that in the spring the beds are full of raging water. The streams travel short distances so they don’t have time to merge into large rivers. Despite their size, the fall from glacier to ocean gives them a swift current.

 

The plains are used for ranching. A few ranchers have cattle but most raise sheep and horses. Icelandic wool products are sold throughout the country. Lamb is a staple; Icelandic meat soup is very good.

 

 

 

There are also many horses which are unique to Iceland. They are short, stalky beasts with long, shaggy mains and tails. There is little farming. In fact, we saw only one garden at a home behind a place where we stayed.

 

 

Iceland has a history of recent volcanic activity. So, the rocks are angular and jagged. They haven’t had time to weather into smoother surfaces. But, even in the lava fields, grasses and wildflowers grow between the rocks and gravel. Moss sometimes grows on the volcanic rock giving the lava fields a soft, velvety green color to contrast with its normal black, jagged features.

As you travel through Iceland, you get glimpses of the massive glaciers that cover many of the mountains. In a few spots, glacial tongues reach the valley floor. Where this occurs, you can see the blue icy edges of the glacier. At the edge, ice breaks loose and falls as icebergs into lagoons. In Jökulsárlón, the icebergs float down a short river and into the ocean where some flow back onto beach.

 

 

 

We got to spend precious few hours in the highlands (mountains). One visit took us across a rocky riverbed of gray-green volcanic rock into hills made of broken shards of shale. Shale is sedimentary rock meaning it formed under a calm lake or ocean. It is an anomaly in an otherwise volcanic landscape. A second trip took us to a high valley near one of the glaciers. The valley is reminiscent of those you might see in a medieval fantasy story. The path through the jagged rocks of the tall valley led uphill, next to a stream that cascades from the glacier. The atmosphere was cool and damp. The cliff side was covered with moss and wildflowers.

I’ll be publishing more images focused on different features. Iceland is a remarkably beautiful place. I look forward to visiting again.

 

 

 

Note: Click on caption to see images in a larger size.

These and other images are available for purchase on my website: www.earthwatcher.us or by contacting larry@earthwatcher.us