Friday, December 6, 2013

HORSE FARMS

One of my recent landscape photo locales has been the Oldenburg Farm, one of the horse farms on the west side of Mequon, where I live.  Recently, I took a few photos at the farm when coming back from a visit to a tree farm that was the subject of the prior post.  Here is one of the shots that I got.


The colors were muted by the little bit of fog still hanging in the air and by the overcast sky, but the heavy frost on the ground helped the scene, and I liked the pastel quality of the smaller mid ground trees that were also coated in frost.  I also liked the column of smoke on the far left of the image.  Actually, I had to crop this shot down on the left because there was a large truck on the far left that I wanted to exclude and was just able to preserve the column of smoke.  A technical note: I had inadvertently set the lens aperture at a wide open f/4 on this shot, which cut down the exposure time but also reduced depth of field.  Even so, the image seems sharp enough where it counts--in the fencing.  So I was happy.

Here's another shot on the farm looking south.


I was looking to feature the large bare oak, despite the big gap in its branches, and was hoping that the fog would allow me to get more separation from the trees in the background.

A few days later we were blessed with a very dense fog, so I returned to the Oldenburg Farm, hoping to take advantage of the weather.  Here is a shot that illustrates just how dense the fog was.


This photo actually features that same oak in the upper center of the image.  And actually I had to work a lot in post processing to bring out any detail of the tree.  But I did like the play between the fences and the fog.  Initially, I thought I would crop out the darker tree branches appearing in the upper right corner of the image, but then decided that I didn't mind them as an element.

Here's a photo of the farm's entry road lined with trees that are now bare of leaves.


And here is a shot of just the right side of that entry road.


The fence nicely creates a line of perspective for the eye to follow . . . into the fog.  One of the things that makes this farm particularly attractive is that it is so beautifully maintained.

There is another horse farm a little farther to the west that also features nice lines of fencing, that I assume are used for walking the horses.  One of the double rows of fencing is perpendicular to the road, and I have been thinking of investigating whether those fence lines would offer anything of photographic interest.  I stopped by on the morning of the dense fog, and this is what I got.


Initially, I thought the tree might be right in the middle of the fencing leading into the fog, but such was not the case.  In fact the tree actually helps to make the shot work, I think.  I wanted to place the perpendicular fencing off-center to create negative space on the left side of the image.  However, I also took a vertical shot in which I centered the fence, and I thought that worked as well.


I was fortunate that I had the time and opportunity to take advantage of the weather to get these shots.

John

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