Archives

Glenowen Farm Round Hill Virginia

Northern Virginia was locked in a week of bitter temperatures, followed by a day of rapid warming. This warming trend sent warm air over frozen ground and produced oceans of heavy thick white air. Distance multiplied by this natural opaque filtering can produce photographs of amazing beauty.

A recent foggy weekend morning in Loudoun County was a perfect time to seek out these serene settings mixed with meandering Loudoun tree farmtree lines and farm features. The Blue Ridge Mountains consistently produces these types of environments when the light is right. The fog led me to Glen Owen Farm located at the foothills of the Blue Ridge in Round Hill. Spanning hundreds of acres, this Century Farm, not only raises cattle but also wheat, barley soy and corn.

The flowing tree lines appear as earthy seams that playfully hold the ridge together. Now leaveless, these barren bones help to create a patched jacket look dotted with cows and veins of snow. The layers of trees blend as each successive rise fades with distance.

Adjacent to this place is a Christmas tree farm, also pictured here. I’ve also photographed this location many times over the years. Whole sections of trees grow and shrink upon comparison of pictures taken over time. Fog can lend itself well to trees arranged in rows. The contrast between nature on its own time, and the human element, can create a metaphor of man and nature.

Loudoun farm photographyI’ll often drop what I’m doing in the name of photography and fog. This alluring mixture has often yielded moody photos that beg for attention.

Read more →

 

Appalachian Trail in Fall

Hiking along the Appalachian Trail in fall often produces wonderful photography. Couple the hike with a rocky foreground and sunlight streaking the sky with brilliant rays and you have the makings of a pleasant Virginia afternoon. This photograph also shows distant pastures spotted with sunlight that managed to slip through the heavy clouds on this day.

This western facing overview is located near the Blackburn hikers hostel in Loudoun County, Virginia. After reaching the mountain top above the cabin, this particular spot can be found about one mile north along the Trail. Due to the ever changing weather along the Blue Ridge Mountains, this view is subject to change every few minutes. Often the sky here is filled with soaring Turkey Vultures, which are always a pleasure to watch.

Being a lover of beautiful landscapes, this photographer visits here often. I've come to appreciate the few generous views that the northern Virginia mountains offer. Both sides of the ridge tend to be covered with thick, young trees that hinder such terrific views.

 A rocky overlook along the Appalachian Trail in Clarke County, VA.

 

As the locals know, Loudoun County, Virginia has been inundated with stink bugs over the last year. The rocks and boulders in the foreground were covered with these insects on this day. It was difficult to simply walk on them without crushing one of these small, smelly creatures. As a photographer, I strive to leave a location untouched, including the sparing of bugs. I won't pick the vegetation, tear down branches or change the living environment to suit my photography needs. I will, however, move something around to get  better shot.

The Blackburn cabin offers through hikers a place to stay for the night as they journey along the east coast. Aside from the main lodge, this hostel also features several small cabins and a place for tent camping. On a clear day, visitors are treated to views of the Washington Monument from the front lawn. This is also a fine place to simply sit in a chair and ponder.

Read more →

 

Appalachian Trail Stream in Winter

During a winter shoot along the Appalachian Trail, I captured tree matter frozen in time over a stream. When inspecting the photo later at home, I was surprised by the intricate detail revealed by the low light from the sun. When viewing a large format photograph on the computer, the details are not seen when viewed as full frame. This video provides both the full frame view, while also exposing the details it contains.

The small Photo Story app allows the user to arrange photos on a time line, while zooming in/out of each in a video-like fashion. It was used in producing this brief video.

 

 

Virginia contains nearly one fourth of the entire length of the Appalachian Trail. With 550 miles, it never lacks a rewarding experience. Needless to say, it offers tremendous opportunities for landscape photographers like me.

Read more →