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Saturday, December 1, 2007

Winter's Grace

The solitude of photography in snow

Snow Forms, Yosemite
Snow formations on rocks, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, California.

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I love to photograph nature during the winter. Emotionally, th quiet and stillness are calming and meditative to me. Here in the Yosemite area, the tourist traffic slows down and so the atmosphere is less frenetic. Over the years, I’ve made more Yosemite images during winter than any other season.

Visually, so many aspects appeal to me about the winter landscape. The bare branches of winter trees attract me to their strong lines and challenge me to compose images with dynamic graphic designs.

When snow covers the ground, it absorbs sounds and obscures many distractions, making landscapes more simple and sublime. When the su strikes the snow, especially at low angles, shadows and textures come alive. Rocks found along a river are transformed into sculpture.

The cold weather gives us another bonus of the season when ice forms an endless variety of patterns and designs on the often-quiet waters of winter. Exploring the frozen edges of rivers and ponds for magic designs in ice is a favorite winter activity of mine.

To visit William Neill's blog or sign up for newsletter updates on his Landscape Essentials course with BetterPhoto.com, and for information about his books, portfolios, new images and more, go to www.williamneill.com.

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