aside Snow & Ice — and Being There…

Morning Freeze - Haywood County, NC Nikon D90, 18-200mm lens, Aperture Priority, Morning Freeze - Haywood County, NC Nikon D90, 18-200mm lens, 70mm focal length, f22, 1/500 Sec. 0EV,  iSO 1600
Morning Freeze – Haywood County, NC
Nikon D90, 18-200mm lens, Aperture Priority, 70mm Focal length, F22, 1/500 Sec, EV“ 0,” ISO 1600

Well, we never made it out Wednesday morning as planned. Snow came and reeeeallly freezing temps, like -0°. The next day; however, we did get out. Single digits to teens, but with a warm car and couple pair of socks, we prevailed.

The interesting thing is how nature creates some great situations. With the air so cold, even the icy stream spews out mist covering everything. Then it freezes. This hoar frost dresses up any image that cries out, “COLD.” And the raising morning sun acts like a warming filter, balancing the normal blue of low temperature to create a Point ‘n Shoot image we see here. Aint nature great! No manipulation, just “being there.”

“The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible.”Vladimir Nabokov

Being there is such an interesting phrase, I wondered what others had to say about it. Here is another …
“A painter must think of everything he sees as being there entirely for his own use and pleasure.”Lucian Freud

Actually, a painter has both a more difficult task than a photographer and an easier one. He has to covey the elements in nature that one can barely describe – Those RAYS streaming through the trees, a magical sunset or sunrise, the mist of a special kind. The photographer just presses a little button and presto an image of immense proportion – sometimes beyond words – he only has to “be there.” Ah, but those early hours when sleep seems so much more important, or waiting, during the dinner hour, for “something” while the stomach churns.

In the image here, there were choices – what to include, what to exclude. The small stumpy tree in the left foreground, was a conscious decision to include. Without it the balance would have been off. The mist is important – there were streams that flowed without the mist. The hoar frost says certain things, and on and on.

So, the picture is but a story of a point in time at a certain place. And the ones that really work do not require a caption. They do evoke an emotion, however. Or pull at the heart strings. As Perce Powell would say, “To lift an image out of the ordinary, include a feeling, an emotion.” So, we strive to be there when all those things are happening at the same time And that’s why we go out when we do, to do what we do.

And to finish up this intellectual discussion, I thought it might be interesting to see what Mark Twain had to say on the subject. He didn’t address “being there” but here’s a few things that are pretty good.

“A person who won’t read has no advantage over one who can’t read.”                    “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.”
“A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.”            —   all by Mark Twain

And one of my favorites, on a tombstone in Key West… “I told you I was sick.”

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