Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘rocks

The Middle Falls at Letchworth

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The Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park in western New York State proved as abundant* as the other two main waterfalls in supplying me with pictures during our July 27th visit. Let’s begin with a scene-setter from a faraway overlook. Notice that in the distance beyond the Middle Falls you can make out the Upper Falls, which are indeed upstream and therefore higher up in altitude as well.

Now for a better look at the Middle Falls in its own right:

And here’s an even closer look at the cascade:

Given all that turbulence, the downstream view from the top seems placid:

A slight, slender, tall waterfall graced one side of the gorge:

When I looked down and to the right I was pleased to see this:

* Appropriately, the word abundant comes from Latin unda, which meant ‘wave’ (think undulate) and which evolved from the same Indo-European root that gave rise to native English water. That root also appears in Irish whisky and Russian vodka, which are, euphemistically speaking, forms of ‘water.’

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 23, 2019 at 4:41 PM

The Upper Falls at Letchworth

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On July 27th we visited the three main waterfalls at Letchworth State Park.
These are the Upper Falls photographed at 1/5000 of a second:

To let you sense the water’s movement I made an animation
from two consecutive frames taken less than half a second apart.

Come closer to the churning water at 1/2000 of a second:

The plants on the far side of the gorge enjoyed what amounted to constant sideways rain:

Here’s a view showing part of the top of the falls at 1/2000 of a second:

In contrast, at a slow 1/13 of a second I recorded this view of a nearby side waterfall
that some visitors ambled down to for pictures of themselves at a more-human scale:

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 20, 2019 at 4:03 PM

(WF) cubed + G cubed

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Today’s title is a coded description of the land that is upstate New York: WonderFully Well-Formed WaterFalls and Gorgeous Gorges Galore. In fact the pictures from those kinds of places make up the majority of all the ones I took on the trip. Rather than going in chronological order, which would mean that for a time you’d see post after post with the same types of photographs, I’ll maintain variety by interspersing* gorge and waterfall pictures from New York State with those of other subjects in other places.

Although I grew up on Long Island and visited various sites upstate during my childhood and later on, somehow until July 27th of this year I’d never made it to Letchworth State Park, which bills its Genesee River gorges as the Grand Canyon of the East. Having been to the Grand Canyon of the West, I find the claim a bit of a stretch. Still, there’s no denying that Letchworth is a worthy place to visit. It’s home to three large and impressive waterfalls that truthfully go by the names Lower, Middle, and Upper, along with dozens of smaller falls. Today’s pictures come from the vicinity of the Lower Falls, which we saw first.


How about the strata in the walls of those rocky gorges?

The angularity of some structures made me think I was looking at the ruins of ancient buildings.
And as always, some plants find rootholds in seemingly unlikely places.

Look how wide the Lower Falls are. I wanted to shoot from further left but I haven’t learned how to fly.

* In current English we can intersperse and disperse and even asperse but we can’t just sperse; in early modern English sperse was a synonym of disperse.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 17, 2019 at 4:43 AM

A new waterfall

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Way back on April 20th I found a waterfall in the Upper Bull Creek Greenbelt that was new to me. I took pictures in rather harsh light and also went back the next day to take more photographs in slightly softer light. Somehow I never showed any of those pictures here, so partly to make up for that and partly as a scene-setter, I’ve begun this post with a ferns-on-boulder view of the falls from back then.

On June 28th I returned to the waterfall, where I experimented with fast shutter speeds (above, 1/1600 of a second, shades of Hokusai’s “Great Wave”) and slow shutter speeds (below, 1/25 of a second). Each approach has advantages and drawbacks.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 7, 2019 at 4:48 AM

Like a lion

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This rock formation reminds me of an animal’s head, most often a lion’s.
I photographed it along a tributary of Bull Creek in Great Hills Park on June 24th.
Hail, hail, not Freedonia but pareidolia.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 4, 2019 at 4:45 AM

Shimmering light

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One stretch of a Bull Creek tributary in my neighborhood flows beneath a limestone overhang. There are times when morning light filters through the trees, reflects off the surface of the water, and shimmers on the limestone wall of the overhang. July 8th at 9:04 was one of those times.

For the photographically curious: I took these pictures with a simple old 50mm lens wide open at f/1.4. Understandably, given the optics and the flowstoned face of the rocky overhang, not everything came out sharp, but somehow that hasn’t bothered me.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 16, 2019 at 4:46 AM

Ogunquit

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A year ago today we spent time inside the Ogunquit Museum of Art
in the town of the same name on the Maine coast.

Afterwards I clambered about behind the museum taking pictures of the rocks and tidal pools.

I never posted any of those photographs in 2018, so to make amends I’m showing you a few now.

As always, patterns and textures beckoned. So did colors, whether muted or bright.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 11, 2019 at 4:52 AM

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