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Posts Tagged ‘winter photography’

Winter Details at Hatchery Falls in Muskoka, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 180mm ISO 100, f16 @ 0.6 seconds

Winter Details at Hatchery Falls in Muskoka, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 180mm
ISO 100, f16 @ 0.6 seconds

I am looking forward to departing this bitterly cold winter soon for the warmth of the Caribbean island of Cayman Brac, but thought I would share a few winter detail images that I recently processed while I finish-up on some of my much needed tasks prior to my departure. Some of these photos were created last winter, but I did not have time to edit them until recently. For each of these images I used my old Nikon 80-400mm VR lens to zoom in on some of the interesting details that can be found within the winter landscape.

One more week of cold temperatures to endure :) I have been in contact with some of the folks I met last year on Cayman Brac and can’t wait to get down there to photograph the Brown Booby’s with chicks as they have been hatching over the past week!

Winter Details Along the Skeleton River in Muskoka, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 185mm ISO 100, f16 @ 0.5 seconds

Winter Details Along the Skeleton River in Muskoka, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 185mm
ISO 100, f16 @ 0.5 seconds

Frozen Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400 mm VR lean @ 135mm ISO 800, f29 @ 1/125 sec. Handheld

Frozen Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400 mm VR lean @ 135mm
ISO 800, f29 @ 1/125 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber bay Park, Toronto Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 135mm ISO 800, f16 @ 1/640 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 135mm
ISO 800, f16 @ 1/640 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber bay Park, Toronto, Ontario Nikon D800, Nion 80-400mm VR lens @ 400mm ISO 800, f16 @ 1/250 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 400mm
ISO 800, f16 @ 1/250 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 240mm ISO 800, f16 @ 1/800 sec. Handheld

Frozen Lake Details on Lake Ontario at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 240mm
ISO 800, f16 @ 1/800 sec. Handheld

 

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Icy Shoreline of Lake Ontario in Toronto Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 400mm, ISO 800 f25 @ 1/800 sec. Handheld

Icy Shoreline of Lake Ontario in Toronto
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 400mm, ISO 800 f25 @ 1/800 sec. Handheld

On Friday, February 6th I decided to make the drive down to Humber Bay Park along the Lake Ontario shoreline in Toronto. I often find this to be a very productive location for over-wintering waterfowl, in particular the arctic species such as Long-tailed Ducks. I did not however, anticipate that much of the inner bays of the park would be frozen over. Usually there are open sections of water amid the frozen surface that hold lots of waterfowl, but on this day there were none and the ducks were much too far out in the lake to attempt photographing them. The solution: change gears and photograph some winter details because they can be a ton of fun.

In the image above the large boulders along the shoreline that protect against erosion from the incoming waves are coated in thick and treacherous ice. In the photo below I photographed this thick ice as it was back-lit by the sun to reveal the beautiful turquoise color of the rippled ice pattern created by the waves as they crash into the shoreline.

Rippled Ice Details Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 240mm ISO 100 f13 @ 1/13 sec. Nikon Polarizing Filter

Rippled Ice Details
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 240mm ISO 100 f13 @ 1/13 sec. Nikon Polarizing Filter

As I made my way further along the shoreline exploring the interesting textures of ice I came upon a spot along the shoreline where it looked like the beach was made of ice cubes. It was difficult to steady myself for this handheld photo on the super slick ice, but I did mange to get a few interesting images. Below is my favorite of the ice cube beach.

Icy Details on Lake Ontario Shoreline Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm VR lens @ 85mm, ISO 100 f16 @ 1/160 sec

Icy Details on Lake Ontario Shoreline
Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm VR lens @ 85mm, ISO 100 f16 @ 1/160 sec

Next on my list was to check out an area at Humber Bay where one of the small inland, man-made ponds flows back down to Lake Ontario to photograph some miniature landscape scenes of winter stream details. There was just enough cloud in the sky to diffuse the bright sun, yet allow the ice to reflect back the blue in the sky. Below is a selection of some interesting ice formations from here.

Winter River Details Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 230mm ISO 50 f36 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 230mm ISO 50 f36 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 240mm, ISO 50 f36 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR lens @ 240mm, ISO 50 f36 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 230mm, ISO 50 f40 @ 0.8 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 230mm, ISO 50 f40 @ 0.8 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 230mm, ISO 50 f40 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Winter River Details
Nikon D800, Nikon 80-400mm VR Lens @ 230mm, ISO 50 f40 @ 0.3 sec, Nikon Polarizing Filter

Please do remember to click on each image to view the larger, sharper version.

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Duchesnay Falls Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens, ISO 50, f16 @ 1/25 sec.

Looking up at a frozen Duchesnay Falls
Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens, ISO 50, f16 @ 1/25 sec.

I have completed much of the processing of the image files from my trip up to Duchesnay Falls in North Bay, Ontario and thought I would share them with folks here on the blog. Each of these photographs were created on Wednesday, January 7th on what turned out to be a bitterly cold day, with the outside temperature hovering at -26 degrees C. I love being outdoors in such weather creating photographs. Think about it now – at these temps you are almost guaranteed to have such destinations all to yourself and there are no mosquitoes to contend with :)  As long as I dress in in multiple layers and wear appropriate footwear (Sorels rated to -40) and head-wear I can stay out all day if need be.

Please do remember to click on each of the images to see the larger, sharper versions.

Duchesnay Creek Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm, ISO 50, f22 @ 0.3 sec.

Duchesnay Creek
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm, ISO 50, f22 @ 0.3 sec.

Duchesnay Creek Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 22mm, ISO 50, f16 @ 0.4 sec.

Duchesnay Creek
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 22mm, ISO 50, f16 @ 0.4 sec.

In the final image below note how the river’s brownish water has created tea-colored ice formations within the river. At first I was disappointed when I discovered this darkly stained ice, but the longer I looked at it I thought that it was rather interesting and created some interesting color to what otherwise be a typical winter river-scape.

Duchesnay Creek Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens 20mm, ISO 100, f16 @ 0.6 sec.

Duchesnay Creek
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens 20mm, ISO 100, f16 @ 0.6 sec.

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Duchesnay Creek Nikon D800, Nikom 18-35mm lens, ISO 50, f16 @ 0.6 sec. Polarizing Filter

Duchesnay Creek
Nikon D800, Nikom 18-35mm lens, ISO 50, f16 @ 0.6 sec. Polarizing Filter

The forecast for today was one of bitter cold temperatures and snow squalls, however, the snow was to remain further towards the southern areas of the Ontario. When the weather turns bitterly cold this is often the time I am ready to head out to some of my favorite waterfalls and rivers because the extreme cold temperatures do wonders for the creation of awesome ice formations. My chosen destination for today was the beautiful Duchesnay Falls, which is on the Duchesnay Creek in North Bay, Ontario. I awoke at 4:30 a.m. and commenced my 3 hour drive north to North Bay. When I arrived in North Bay the temperature was a balmy -26 C :) As I made my way through the forest towards the falls I soon came to realize that I could not hear the sound of the waterfall through the forest, and as I had feared it was completely frozen over, but I continued along the trail system the leads up to the top of the waterfall and did find some nice open water above the falls. I spent about three hours creating various compositions along this stretch of open water on the Duchesnay Creek before making the trek home. All in all it was a wonderful day, made even better by the brutal cold, which made for some lovely ice formations. I will share some of the alternate compositions with you shortly.

Please click on the image to view the sharper, larger version.

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Winter Tree at Sunrise

Yesterday I was nominated by my good friend and colleague Mike Grandmaison to take part in the #treesinfourseasons photo challenge. This is my first entry in the challenge. I created this scene on a day when I had planned to visit Tiny Marsh for sunrise. As it turned out the trees in the adjacent agricultural fields looked a whole lot more promising as their silhouette’s were cast against the light winter fog at sunrise.

The rules state that each day I must nominate a fellow photographer to continue the challenge. Today I nominate Ethan Meleg

Your challenge images must represent all four seasons, one from each season. With each entry please challenge one other person and use the hashtag #treesinfourseasons so everyone can search to find all the entries as the challenge progresses.

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Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada

Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada

This morning I awoke at 5:00 a.m. to begin my journey north to Ontario’s Muskoka region to meet up with fellow photographer / friend Kyle McDougall. Do take a moment to check out Kyle’s work as he is a very talented photographer.The plan was to visit several of the areas secluded, woodland waterfalls. The weather forecast was for cloudy conditions with temperatures hovering around 2-3 degrees Celsius. Perfect weather for a comfortable day photographing winter waterfalls.

Ontario’s Muskoka region has been hit hard this winter with tons of snowfall. There is roughly four feet of snow on the ground and significant ice formation at some of the waterfalls, due to the brutal cold temperatures encountered this winter. At each of  the destinations it was somewhat tricky getting into position for some of the images as I would often sink to my waist in deep snow along the riverbanks. My lower back problems did not appreciate this very much and are now getting even with me for heading off without my snowshoes.

Potts Creek, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada

Potts Creek, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada (10-stop Neutral Density Filter Used)

On today’s waterfall excursion I experimented with some new techniques, gear, and camera features. In the image that opens this blog post I used the focus stacking technique, whereby I created three separate images with each focused at a different point from foreground to horizon and then assembled them in photoshop to create one image file. In the above image at Potts Creek I was very disappointed to see lots of foam floating in the creek below the falls, but I noted that it was floating around in a circular motion. By attaching a B&W 10-stop Neutral Density Filter to the lens I was able to create an image with a 30 second exposure that would record the circular motion making it a pleasing element within the composition.

Skeleton Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada

Skeleton Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada (in-camera HDR)

The final experiment I tried was setting my Nikon D800 to it’s in-camera HDR function. By doing so the camera would create a natural-looking TIFF file of 100 MB. I was quite pleased with the in-camera HDR results and will use this mode often. For winter imagery I found it opened up the shadowed areas nicely and brought out the greens in the cedar trees well too. While optimizing these images I chose to add a touch of Nik / Google’s Detail Extractor filter from Color Efex 4 to bring out the fine details in the snow.

Please click on each of the images to see the larger, sharper version.

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Snowdrift, Thornton, Ontario

Snowdrift, Thornton, Ontario

I am bound for the Caribbean island of Cayman Brac, which is the most easterly of the Cayman Islands. As a result, the blog will be relatively quite for the next two weeks, but if I can find a wifi connection I will stop by with a Smartphone Snap update. I am quite excited about this trip for a number of reasons. First and foremost I am going to try my hand at underwater photography and secondly there is a wide variety of wildlife subjects to photograph including; numerous species of wading birds, Ground Boas, Cayman Racers (another type of snake), Iguanas, Parrots, Brown Booby (nesting season), crabs, and even several frog species :)

As I write this post we are being hit with yet another round of snow from Mother Nature. Around my home the road signs are virtually buried in snowbanks, and the wild winds of last week have created many cool snowdrifts along the county roads as well. On my way to pick my daughter up from school the other day I had a few minutes to kill so I decided to grab a couple of fresh snowy pics to share. Hope you like the new photos. I’m outta here – palm trees and sand here I come :)

On a side note – the February issue of Denise Ippolito’s Creative Photography eMini-Magazine is now available, please click here to check it out, and to see the article by yours truly click here. To check out Denise Ippolito’s blog follow this link.

Please remember to click on the images to see the larger, sharper versions.

Winter Farm Scene, Thornton, Ontario

Winter Farm Scene, Thornton, Ontario

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