Autumn Abstract

Joyous is a word that can describe the glorious season of fall. Sweeping landscapes display nature’s brightest colors. Reds, oranges, and yellows dominate the hills and valleys of the Finger Lakes. Scenic vistas including lakes, barns, and rows of grapes are favorite targets for anyone with a camera (including me). But recently I found myself fascinated by some smaller autumn scenes.

Walking along streams including Mud Creek in Farmington, Onanda Glen in Canandaigua, and Flint Creek near Double Drop Falls in Phelps, I took the time to look for some smaller fall scenes created by the flow of the water and the colors of leaves trapped in the rocks.

Choosing a setting on my camera to shoot at exposures of 1/10th of a second was enough to create these abstract images of the season. Light on the water as it moves over the rocks creates a silky smooth appearance and brings out all the colors that nature provides. Using the slower exposure allows for the capture of the colors of the fixed objects, such as the rocks and the leaves that have been stopped on their journey downstream, while simultaneously showing the movement of the water.

Scenes like these can be found later in the season when most of the trees have shed their leaves. Most digital cameras will allow for using a slower exposure and at 1/10th of a second, which can be done hand held without the use of a tripod.

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story and photos by Mike Sargent