Thursday, November 3, 2016

An Upside Down World

by Cathy

Do you remember as a child when you would hang upside down and see the world from a different perspective? I remember spending a lot of time during school recesses hanging upside down on the monkey bars watching the other kids playing. I pretended my world was right and they were running around upside down.  As I’ve aged I have found a way to experience the same magical perspective without being upside down and all the blood rushing to my head. I see reverse perspectives through water reflections.

Reflections are especially wonderful this time of year when the rich fall colors reflect on the blue water’s surface. While water itself is not blue, water gives off blue light upon reflections. The deep blue fall skies make the water even more blue. I spent some time recently near a lovely lake and was fascinated by the reflections.

One thing I really like about water reflections is that they’re easy to take. There’s no magic formula to follow. The hardest part is paying attention and learning to see them. When you find a shiny surface, whether it's a body of water or even wet pavement, pay attention to your position and what you see reflected in the water. Sometimes the reflections are better if you’re standing, but sometimes they more interesting if you’re at a low angle.

You also have the freedom of no rules to be followed. If you want the water’s edge across the horizontal center, put it there and you’ll find amazing symmetry. You alone decide where you want the water’s edge, how much you want to include in the photo, or how much you want to exclude.

Still water and moving water create totally different images. Still water gives you a crisp reflection, while moving water blurs that reflection. One of my favorite things to do is zoom in close and fill the frame with the reflection. Sometimes I leave a little bit of reality like the branch in the photo below. Filling the frame creates a gorgeous impressionist image.

As your contemplating your photo, remember to look for the light and see what it’s doing. In the photo below the morning sun rays were coming over the mountain to the left. Look toward the bottom and you can see those rays reflected in the water.

Sometimes you’ll find neat optical illusions such as in the photo below. The water is running down the spillway and suddenly takes a sharp turn to the right. By zooming in close, an image can be created that has others wondering "what is happening here?"

Our earth is covered with about 71% of water, take advantage of that. I encourage you to spend some time searching for reflections. Fall is the perfect time. The colors are so rich; the yellows, oranges, reds, and the blues of the water. 

As Terri mentioned on Monday our focus for the month of November is gratitude. As I stood by this lake with camera in hand I felt deep gratitude for the water we have to freely enjoy. 


kelly said...

these are brilliant cathy! love the power of a reflection to change our perspective on things. xoxo

Carol said...

Beautiful! Reflections are my favorite- especially this time of year! Lovely

Dotti said...

You're so right, Cathy! This is the perfect time of year for reflections - the angle of the light, the brilliant colors, water - all combine in a "perfect storm" to create great photos. These are so good! The last two could easily be abstracts if you hadn't told us what they actually are!

Anonymous said...

These are brilliant, Cathy! The first one is so perfect that it really does look upside-down. I haven't taken any great reflection photos lately, but there are a few in my archives that are among my all-time favorite photos. I need to go seek out some new ones.

terriporter said...

I've always loved reflections in photos and yours are perfect examples of why! We don't have a lot of natural water around (this is the desert, after all!) but when I do have a chance to be around water, I am always looking for reflections, especially ones that make you wonder if you are looking at the real thing or a reflection! Thanks for reminding me to go in search of some reflections to shoot!

Sarah Huizenga said...

I soak up every one of autumn's water reflections. The leaves will be leaving soon :(

JUDITH said...

You did a wonderful job catching the reflections. I am just learning to look for them and I have found them amazing.

Debbie said...

gorgeous reflections!! some of these images could be flipped and you would never know it!!!

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