Many years ago, I read the remarkable book, The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride. I’ll leave it to you to check it out and see what “color of water” refers to in that unforgettable story. But the phrase has always stuck with me and it came to mind last week when I was in the Adirondacks enjoying a warm-ish spring day, photographing details and patterns as the forest comes out of it’s deep freeze.
Water, in all it’s forms, was everywhere.
Thick, dense, white fog floated above the streams early in the day. Where snow had melted from the forest floor, there was still a coating of whitish ice but the colors of pine needles and twigs beneath showed through. The lakes were half water, half ice. Expanses of water reflecting the blue sky were interspersed with expanses of grayish ice in varying stages of melting. Two feet of white snow covered one trail but was so close to melting that we just kept sinking into it. Water was flowing and dripping everywhere.
The phrase, “the color of water” came to mind as I observed all these different forms of water and the variety of colors being presented.
Here are just a few of the water forms and patterns that I witnessed that day along with some mandalas that deepen the experience of the colors. Perhaps you will be able to tell which images provided the source for each mandala?
Color of Water 1 ©GSHaile
In some spots, the snow is gone from the forest floor but a thin coat of ice remains giving a hazy, unfocused look to the pine needles underfoot.
Color of Water 2 ©GSHaile
A patch of ice on the parking lot asphalt takes on a bluish cast from the sky reflecting in the highlights.
Color of Water 3 ©GSHaile
Water streaming down to the lake from the snow melt creates interesting patterns in the sand.
Color of Water 4 ©GSHaile
Reflection of the sky and trees in a patch of melting ice on top of Fourth Lake.
Color of Water Mandala 1 ©GSHaile
Color of Water Mandala 2 ©GSHaile
Color of Water Mandala 3 ©GSHaile
Color of Water Mandala 4 ©GSHaile
My freezer is filling up with these blocks of ice lately. Why? Because one day in the winter, I had this random thought, “what would happen if I froze flowers and then photographed them?” (It had been a very, very long winter and my mind was starved for inspiration. 🙂 )
Waiting to be captured
But sometimes, it pays to follow those seemingly strange inspirations. Waiting for Spring (below) is an image from my first effort to freeze flowers and then photograph them.
Waiting for Spring is currently part of the Best of Botanicals, National Juried Photography Exhibition at PHOTO Gallery Oakland. 🙂 If you happen to be in the area, between now and July 12, stop in and check out the exhibit.
Best of Botanicals-PHOTO Oakland 2014
As a last second, “oh what the heck” I also submitted Waiting for Spring to the Northeast District PPA Image Competition a few weeks ago. Last week, it earned one of my highest scores ever in PPA competition. Wahoo!
I’ll share more frozen flowers as I capture them. For now, I’m stocking the freezer with blocks of ice holding the blooms of spring.
Have you ever had a “wierd” thought that turned out to be a good idea?
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It’s been a very long, very cold winter. It’s the beginning of March and there are still mounds and mounds of snow and mostly grey skies. There are a few hints of spring with the occasional flock of robins and the lovely little heads of snowdrops poking up at the edge of the snowbank in the garden. Living in the northern climates, it’s those little glimpses of hope that keep one going at this point. It seems that we’re all just waiting to thaw, physically and emotionally from the long winter. (more…)
The new year, for most of us, is a time of reflection and reordering of life, priorities, and focus. (I often wonder if it’s different in the southern hemisphere where the New Year comes in the summer. Does it change that dynamic of newness?) This blog has been the subject of some of that reflection and as a result will have more varied posts for you to enjoy. Mandalas will still come one Monday of the month, but other Mondays will hold different themes. A new theme, “Filling the Well”, shares what’s been inspiring me lately. (more…)
When it’s cold, very cold, there’s this lovely thing that happens on windows some times…frost, poetically known as fern frost for the fern-like tendrils that meander across the window. I’ve been photographing these lovely designs lately and thought they might be interesting source for mandalas.
These mandalas remind me of this quote by the author T. A. Barron, “Every piece of the universe, even the tiniest little snow crystal, matters somehow. I have a place in the pattern, and so do you.”
I wish you all holidays filled with wonder and peace!
It’s been a very snowy week here for Christmas and today for the last day of 2012, the sun decided to grace us with her presence. About 4 in the afternoon, the whole garden sparkled with the sunlight on ice and snow. One of the bushes is encapsulated in ice since it sits directly beneath the dripping icicles hanging from our roof line. I had family watching while I was creating the mandalas and this image is the one that continually drew responses of awe at the patterns that were being revealed.
Happy New Year! May you have the gift of truly seeing the wonder and awe that surrounds you each day in this new year.
It finally snowed here this weekend. Last Thursday it was more like a late spring day and family members were actually eating their Thanksgiving dinner out on the deck. For Central NY State that is extremely unusual. By Saturday afternoon, however, normal had set in and it was starting to snow and has continued ever since. So these mandalas seemed fitting for this blustery snowy day.
In August, we visited our daughter and her family in Switzerland and one of the day trips we took was to see the Rhone Glacier , the source of the Rhone River, high (very, very high ) up in the Alps. A cave has been carved out of the glacier so that you can actually walk into it and be enveloped by it’s silent frigid atmosphere. The patterns and textures of the glacial ice were just beautiful and I took quite a few images not really sure what I would do with them.
As you can see in the original source image there is not a great amount of detail or contrast in the image but still you can almost “feel” the cold. So I wondered what sorts of mandalas this icy image would create. I do think they are appropriate as the icy, snowy weather blows down upon us.
I must admit I am not a fan of winter but the beauty of these pleases me nonetheless. Are you happy to see winter arrive in your part of the world?
I’d love for to to share this with others. Please copy this link to share: https://hailefinephotography.com/2012/11/mandala-monday-11-26-12/