Tag Archives: forest

The Forest Through the Trees

24 Sep
The Forest Through the Trees

The Forest Through the Trees

“There is always music amongst the trees in the Garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it.” -Minnie Aumonier

That is the kind of sky I live for.  A natural symphony.  A masterpiece.  The kind of light that makes anything look beautiful.  Those few precious moments, just before the sun falls below the horizon, lighting up the sky and the forest with the most intense shades of rainbow…

*sigh*

The editing process for the images I took this day was touch and go.  I wasn’t sure if this photo was any good.  I wasn’t sure what I would ever do with it (I have a number of images sitting on hard drives like that) but a few things made me decide to publish this.

First, I was feeling very inspired by some of Lars Van De Goor’s beautiful forest images.  The quality of the light and his edits are gorgeous.

Second, I had some wonderful feedback and encouragement from a loving boyfriend and a good friend.  There is a lesson to be learned there.  Always surround yourself with positive vibes. ……Ain’t nobody got time for haters. haha

 

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Drink The Wild Air

28 May
Drink the Wild Air

Drink the Wild Air

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air…” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Last Saturday, we spent the day hiking around upper Vermont.  Sometimes, you just need to spend some time in nature to recharge the internal batteries, to let go of the stress of our everyday lives and to appreciate something bigger than our daily routines and worries.

If you haven’t made time for Mama Nature lately…well…what are you waiting for?  Get outside!  Trees need love too.

This is a photo from Smuggler’s Notch in Vermont.

13 mm, f/5, 1/50th sec, ISO 100 – edited with a combination of light painting and HDR.

 

The Cabin in the Woods

20 Feb
The Cabin in the Woods

The Cabin in the Woods

Looks like a nice little place to go warm your toes, huh? 🙂  These last few weeks have been snow, snow and more snow.  I still can’t say I love the cold, but it sure does make for some nice photos!

This was taken in upper CT, along a quiet cross-country ski trail by a frozen lake in the winter woods.  It is just one of the many hidden gems to be found out on the east coast.  What we Nutmeggers (yeah…that’s what they call people from Connecticut…I know, I know…) lack in broad sweeping vistas and notable landmarks, we often make up for in scenes like this.  Living here really encourages us to explore…because you never know what you’ll find if you’re willing to go just a little further off the beaten path.  Or in this case, down the ski-path!

A few years back I found a necklace in a small shop on the Cape. It’s a charm with a picture of a compass, and inscribed on it are the words, “Explore. Create. Believe.”  The words stuck with me as both a motto for what I want my life to be, and encouragement to push my photo work just a little further and have faith in the results.  The necklace is a daily reminder that you never know what incredible things are waiting for you up around the bend…you just have to get there.

Thanks for the continued support!! You are all a source of inspiration to me. 🙂

Shannon

Still Reflections, Winter’s Breath

22 Jan
Reflection

Reflection

It’s 6 degrees out, this morning.  We had some snow fall last night.  The roads are slippery and a bit dangerous…but the woods?  They’re perfect.

New England’s snowy skies rarely have much in the way of interest or detail, despite this being taken close to the end of the day.  There was no color, only leaden gray mixed with spots of white.  There were a few hints of yellow-brown on the trees, and some red silt at the edges of the water near the shallows…but rather than act as an accent, it seemed distracting.  I decided to black and white it.

The view, overall, is pretty standard for winter around here but the thing that attracted me to this particular scene is the solid reflection and the natural leading line it created from the corner of the frame.  Since I tend to be a symmetry person, I really wanted to wade into the center of the slow-moving winter stream and re-compose, but I didn’t have waterproof boots or waders.  Also, just outside of the frame where I would have stood, was a dangerous slippery spot that would have tumbled me down a little set of cascades.  haha  Hypothermia is a maybe, but ruining my camera is a definite no.

An Attitude of Gratitude

27 Nov
Vortex

Vortex

Having a positive outlook on life can be hard, but intensely rewarding.  It’s easy to say a glass is half empty.  It’s much harder to say, “Thank goodness I still have half a glass to drink.  I’m thirsty, and that will help.”  Like anything else in life, seeing the silver linings in life is a skill, and when done faithfully, can become a habit.

Imagine a life where you exchange your expectations for gratitude.  The disappointments in life become much more manageable.  And there are fewer of them.  It’s easier to feel like you have enough, to appreciate the gifts you’re given and to see the blessings in life.

That is what I love most about tomorrow, Thanksgiving.  It’s yearly encouragement to be thankful for the things we have already accomplished, to see how far we have come, to appreciate our families and friends, and to see that often, we are lucky to have so much in our lives.  Most of us have a roof, even if we don’t own it.  Most of us have food, warmth and a computer with which to read this awesome blog…  We have life.  Even when it’s hard, it’s precious.

Tomorrow is a day to appreciate the positives.  Spend a few moments between tofurkey and pie reflecting on the good things in your life.  In the end, we can’t keep the gifts, the wealth, the stuff we surround ourselves with…but we can remember the path we took in life, the moments of joy and accomplishment, and be proud of how our experiences shaped us, and the choices we made because of them.  We can practice an attitude of gratitude.

The photo above was taken on a hike with my friend David (an awesome photog from Cali, check out his work!) while he was visiting in CT.  The leave whirlpool reminds me a little of the way water drains from a tub.  Felt appropriate as we make our transition from beautiful, beautiful Autumn….to very cold Winter. haha

 

❤ < 3 ❤

For those of you interested in helping me raise funds for the victims of Typoon Haiyan in the Philippines, when the time comes for holiday shopping, go here.  50% of profits through December 15 go to Care.org and the Filipinos in need.

For those of you interested in winning a holiday gift, go here, “like” the page and leave a comment on the contest poster letting me know which image you want.  Winner announced on Friday, so you only have a few days.

Finding Balance

19 Nov
Wild and Free

Wild and Free

“The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.” -Henry David Thoreau

That quote by Thoreau really struck me.  It was an eloquent reminder to be a “smart shopper” and to invest in the things that matter.  Sometimes, taking a break to appreciate the beautiful chaos of nature is the most therapeutic thing we can do.  Find time for the things that make you happy. Appreciate, be grateful, smile, laugh and love. ❤

FUNDRAISER UPDATE

As you all know, I’m running a fundraiser for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan. (50% of profits from sales through December 15, go here: www.zazzle.com/skalahan) Turns out, zazzle is also running a deal through 11/21 (sorry, I know, not much notice)…use the code HOLIDAYCOUNT for up to 60% off! And I’m pretty sure it is on the production end, not mine, so the donation to the Filipinos will be the same!

Catching Up

21 Oct

So…in the month of October I have:

A) Gotten food poisoning and landed in the emergency clinic in another country. Still trying to recover from that.

B) Hosted my good friend David Pasillas, a west coast photog, and found ourselves on a three day New England leaf-peeping adventure.  I still have to download those shots. haha

C) Worked hard to finish 3 photo projects, one of which will be a collaborative series of blogs with the aforementioned David, my friend Will and his better half Britta (sorry Will. ;-D)  I’m pretty pumped about!  (So..uh…stay tuned)  One of the other projects is a magazine submission which is making me hold off a bit on posting all of my Peru photos just yet.  But trust me, they’re awesome and when the time comes, you’ll love them.

D) Had knee surgery, and am currently on crutches.  I’ll be headed to my post-op appointment in about an hour, as a matter of fact.  You know what is difficult to do on crutches?  Everything. haha

E) Shot a couples session for one of my best friends (on crutches!) and was overwhelmingly happy when the guy surprised us all by turning it into an engagement shoot!

And the month isn’t done yet!

For today, I figured I’d share an oldie-but-goodie fall foliage photo.  Tis the season, afterall. 🙂

Autumn in New England

Autumn in New England

New photos coming shortly, I promise!