Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

May 9, 2009

Phoenix “Snow”

Filed under: composition, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch, light, Non Birds — richditch @ 6:29 pm
Palo Verde Tree

Palo Verde Tree

One of the silly promotional slogans bandied about by the tourist industry in the Phoenix metro area is “you don’t have to shovel sunshine.” Meaning, of course, that a reason to live here is there is no snow in winter to deal with. What they don’t talk about so much is the unbearable heat that accompanies the relentless sunshine. Now that we’re reaching triple digit temps every afternoon I’m limiting my time out shooting even more than I usually do.

With increased temperatures come fewer birds and less bird activity to photograph. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t subjects worth recording, as long as you keep your mind and your eyes open.

This palo verde tree was hard to miss at the Gilbert Water Ranch on the morning of Ma7 7, 2009. It is close to the main parking lot, and I walk past it every time I start my walk there. Usually I don’t give it more than a glance (to see if there are any warblers hanging out, of course), but Thursday morning you couldn’t escape the yellow glow from the blossoms. The effect was enhanced by the layer of fallen blossoms that already coated the ground nearby. So, before I walked on in search of birds I used the backup Nikon D70 and modest 55-200 lens I’ve been hauling along on recent outings for just such opportunities.

This image was made at 55mm, ISO 200, 1/320th second at f/8. IF i’d been carrying the 18-70 lens instead of the 55-200 I probably would have gone wider to get the tree completely in the frame, but that might not have been as pleasing to me as the tighter framing I got. A wider view would include more blue sky, and I feel that would have diluted the impact of the yellow.

When I got to the Water Ranch this morning I got a chance to look again, but the two day interval already took its toll on the blossoms and it wasn’t nearly as exciting for me.


1 Comment »

  1. It only took a few days for this tree to drop all of the color, you might want an after shot of this because it really shows how quickly things change. The tree was absolutely stunning when you took the photo and I also had considered taking a photo of it but lacked any wide angle lens at the time. Glad you took a photo of it!

    Comment by Brendon — May 19, 2009 @ 11:15 am

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