Saturday, February 18, 2017
Saturday Morning Catch--what was and is and will be
I was thinking west. The incessant honking over the Floyd means there should be hundreds, maybe thousands more at the Big Sioux. But the moment I stepped outside, I knew I had to go east, where a fringe of cloud cover was starting to pink with a dawn that was still more than a half hour away.
I got lucky. I happened on an abandoned farm at exactly the right time, a place where I can bale out of the Honda and walk anywhere I'd like without having people call 911. I knew I was in for a flame, the sun still beneath the horizon but that cloud mass already painted, the horizon become a Joseph's coat of many colors. Look for yourself.
I left the car in the middle of the yard and took off behind the house where the maples created a frame. That backdrop was going to be good for maybe ten minutes, I figured, so I pulled any character anywhere near into the foreground and just let the backdrop sing praise.
Ten minutes from dawn. Once the sun rises, the colors flatten, or at least the camera sees them that way. I'm still looking for foreground characters--the shot has to have someone in it.
All that fire is turning citrus. If that farm is at twelve, think of the sun at two or so, still hidden but creating a burn on the horizon.
I didn't pack the tripod, so I held the camera on a fencepost, which explains why the farm's silhouette as sharp as it is.
Then shot the fence post. When finally sun emerges, the colors darken against the burn. The reds depart, as does anything remotely pastel--and they're not coming back. Maybe.
There's no really stunning shots, but the sky was magnificent but fleeting. Really, I'm not out there just to take pictures.
Once that morning sun rises, it's King Midas.
When it clears the haze, it lays a patina on wood, a look that can't be achieved any other way, as if this wreck of a shed were really a palace.
This is all history, of course, what once was.
And this is what is. I was less than a mile away from a garden of wind turbines.
I know I should love them for what they do, but they do insist on being the show.
Here's a Siouxland landscape today--wind turbines and a couple of hog confinements.
So this morning I saw a little of what was and what is and, thankfully, what likely always will be, a fleeting heavenly pallet out east atop the dawn, February 18, just east of Paulina, Iowa.
I'm a witness, and I suppose, so are you.
Posted by J. C. Schaap at 5:04 PM