Looking for winter

Posted by on Feb 8, 2016 in Articles | 3 Comments


It’s been a very unusual winter here in Vermont. Despite what you may have heard or surmised northern New England has not been visited by winter this year. The big snow storm that hit Washington DC and New York City delivered not a flake here (we have plenty of our own) and the last one a week ago missed us as well. Looking out my window as I write this there is no snow to be seen, none, nowhere, nothing.

_DSC8833-2This may be confusing to some of you who listen to national news and the weather channel. To them, New England is somewhere on the Connecticut coast. If Hartford or Old Lyme get snow then all of New England did. In fact, for me to find enough snow to go for a snowshoe today I would either have to go several hours north and several thousand feet higher in elevation or go several hours south and play on the dwindling drifts.

Consequently, I have been in a bit of a photographic funk with very little around to spark my creative juices. Determined to find something wintery to photograph I headed up into my woods hoping that with enough wandering I would eventually bump into Old Man Winter or at least find where he’s been loitering.

Turns out the old guy departed long ago and the only thing he left behind was some ice in a small brook that crosses my woods. Not much ice but least it was pretty.Where ever the water splashed as it leapt over branch and rock icicles formed from the drippings. As each day warmed up the icicles melted away but with cold nights of late they reformed. Walking the stream I found a couple of nice icicle clusters and with camera and tripod in hand I got a few nice shots. The light wasn’t the best and I could’ve used a longer and a wider lens but no complaints- I was outside, my hands were cold, chickadees were in the trees overhead- all was good.

This coming weekend we are supposed to get below zero temperatures so the icicles should really be good then. What do you know? I’m excited again about winter!


  1. Bob Wildman
    February 9, 2016


    The upper image is so unlike you. What did you like in what you saw? Were you fascinated by all of the icy debris on the right? Does the stuff on the right make the dangling icicles look better or draw your attention to them. A longer lens for me would have helped to zero in on the danglers. Maybe you should have kept the 70-200. Would you have told me to crop the right and a little bit from the top?

    For the your next workshop I attend I will put present image for a critique.

    I know one of my ruts can be shooting close and being in love with my 70-200. The danglers with the blurring background is closer to what I expect of you.

    Thanks for you and Brenda being my photo A-team.

    I just completed shooting several hundred images for the child development center. What great fun. There was one group of 10 (+4 teachers) which was extremely active. Trying to keep eyes in focus and a relatively clean background was a real challenge. I had to be as hyperactive as the kids and left soaking with sweat. I had many culls, some great shots and a lot of fun.

    • David
      February 10, 2016

      Hey Bob!
      Where have you been? Boy, you’re a tough nut! And you also happen to be right. the problem is not the composition it is the light. When I got to the stream the sun came out so I did the best I could. I think if the light was flat you wouldn’t notice it as much and your attention would stay on the danglers. That being said I am going back to take the shot again. Those icicles are gone now from yesterday’s warm weather but this weekend it is supposed to get down to -15 so there should be lots more to play with.
      The other issue is that the geometry of the stream is such that it was really hard to find a good angle that didn’t required me to lie down in the stream. That sound like an excuse? It was. But I am going to bring a longer lens next time. I’ll post the new ones and wait for your comments. Thanks Bob!
      BTW- the Dorset Equine Rescue that we photographed for Crossroads Vermont last year has a brand new website and it is loaded with images that we all took. What a huge improvement and Jen and Connie are very, very happy.

  2. brenda
    February 16, 2016

    Bob, does that sound like our fearless leader is making excuses? Hmmmm…. you made me smile today. Big fat, ha ha ha smile.