Sunday, August 3, 2014

What Happened To July?

Where did July go?  I completely missed writing about the July calendar photo.  I was so focused on getting through the Korea and Memory Lane photos that I completely forgot.

Canon Beach, Oregon
Time to get back on track.  If you haven't done it yet, turn your calendar over to August for a view of Palouse Washington.

Lone Farm, Palouse Region, Washington State
The Palouse is a fertile farming region in Eastern Washington State and Western  Idaho.  The rolling dunes of the Palouse Prairie were formed during the ice ages when silt was blown in from the glacial outwash plains to the west and south.  These rolling hills are reminiscent of Tuscany Italy except where Tuscany has vineyards the main crops in Palouse are wheat and rapeseed (Canola).

This photo was taken from the top of Steptoe Butte, which is a quartzite island jutting out of the rolling hills. At 3,612 feet (1,101 m) in elevation it is approximately 1,000 feet (300 m) above the surrounding countryside, which makes a great vantage point for photographing the hills.

Stepetoe Butte is a favorite place for photographers to gather around sunrise and sunset.  When the sun is low in the sky it creates interesting shadows and highlights, which define the contours of the rolling hills.  If the same photo had been taken at mid day the contours of the land would be hard to distinguish and the photo would appear flat and two dimensional.

I made two intentional decisions when composing the photo above.  First, I found a position where the sunlight was coming in from the side to maximize the contrast that defines the contours.  Second, I positioned the farm in the powerpoint position defined by the rule of thirds.   If the farm was dead center in this photo it would have felt static and less interesting.  The fact that the barn is red in a sea of green makes us want to look at the farm first.

Before Dawn
The photo above shows that you don't have to have strong light to define the contours.  This was taken more or less at ground level before the sun came up.  Although the sun was not up yet, there was enough side light to create soft shadows and highlights.  

It may appear that everything was green but in fact, they were growing different crops that had very different colors.   In this case the yellow wheat glowed in the morning sunlight.

It's amazing how beautiful something as simple as wheat fields can be.  God created such stunning beauty for us to enjoy!

Now that it is August it's time to start thinking about the 2015 Calendar.  I will be putting one together over the next couple months.   If you have enjoyed the 2014 Calendar, please save room on your wall for next year.  I will again be donating all the profit to Hope Haven Ministries in Kingsport.

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