It’s A Wrap

Well Christmas is all wrapped up for this year. And it snowed! It snowed most of the day on the 25th and it was beautiful.  Today we managed to even get out for a short ski and more snow is on the way later this week.
It actually feels like Winter now.
A few days before the snow fell I came across these wrapped trees along the highway.  I found them a little haunting in their figure-like resemblance. The way they are mysteriously cloaked and how they gently bend. The way they are lined up in rows like… like what?… an audience for the passing cars?
They are whispering amongst themselves.
All images © Karen McRae

59 thoughts on “It’s A Wrap

  1. Looks like they are on a pilgrimage – perhaps on foot along the Camino de Santiago?
    These are very interesting photos. NIce bokeh in the the first and fourth photos. I wonder what they look like in the snow. Might be worth another visit!

  2. Very cool photos. The wrapped trees remind me of penguins and of sea lions, both lined up with their heads up up skyward. It’s not often I think of ever seeing trees in the same type of pose. Of course it is not often I ever see them wrapped in burlap.

    Nice vision.

    Best to you,

  3. You have excelled yourself with these Karen.. They remind me of Irish Immigrants in the time of the potato famine.. ( I lived in Ireland for 25 years though not at the time of the famine of course…I’m not quite that old 😉 )

  4. You live in such a beautiful area!!
    Since everyone is doing an association, I’ll add my two cents:
    In Japan, there are these little stone statues at road-side shrines for Jizou,
    the deity who protects children… In the winter, often people will put little aprons or cloth over the statues to protect them from the cold. I thought of those right away when I saw your pictures… =) They are also small and vaguely monk-like…

  5. Wow, you got snow! 😀

    These wrapped trees certainly attract attention in a haunting way. Nice observation, Karen. And well captured. 🙂

  6. Karen – I am glad you received nature’s finest gift wrap of snow for Xmas! I think you have done such justice to these images of cloaked trees. You capture the eeriness of the scene, and it looks as if they may come alive at any moment. You did a wonderful job of it as it has evoked all sorts of emotions from reading your comments 🙂

  7. We drive past a row of wrapped trees like on the way into town. I had the same thought the first time I saw them. Isn’t imagination wonderful?

  8. Wow!!! These photographs are incredible… absolutely beautiful and yet eerie… and also filled with incredible design. So crazy that you just happened to stumble upon them… it looks like an installation. I think these are your best work I’ve seen thus far… completely enchanting and haunting… thrilling to look at. I’m serious. Thank you for such a wonderful post! Wishing you a Happy New Year’s!

    1. Thank you so much Polly! I am surprised at how much people are responding to this series. I guess it’s open to so many interpretations. You have been such an amazing supporter right from the beginning of my venture into blogging, I truly appreciate that! wishing you a happy New Year also and all the best in 2012.

  9. They are like The Hattifatteners from The Moomins book series by the Finnish writer, Tove Janson. Here´s what Wikipedia says about them: “They are silent and serious, having neither the ability to talk nor to hear, but in contrast, their sense of feeling is extremely accurate, and they can sense even the most minor tremblings of the ground. They communicate seemingly by telepathy, and their eyes change colour with the sky. They also seem to be melancholic characters. However, despite physiologically resembling animals, Hattifatteners grow from seeds. Planting Hattifattener seeds where someone has taken up residence is an effective way to get rid of him or her.”
    Perfect match, I´d say.

    Happy New Year!

  10. I love these images. I thought I might blog them, giving you and your blog full credit of course. I’ve seen bushes wrapped like this before and they’ve always intrigued me. Like Michelangelo’s ‘prisoners’.

  11. Karen, I think your images of wrapped trees should really be shown in a gallery. Has your work appeared in that sort of venue?

  12. What a nice series. You captured them from “hope, to “suffering”, to “maybe” and then fo “forlorn.” But there are a few of them that look “beligerant” and can not wait for the caretaker to arrive so that they can teach him a lesson. I wouldn’t want to be the caretaker; the lesson would simply be to see what I have done to those poor little trees. (locust trees?)

  13. HI Karen, I am slowly working my way through your photos and desperately want to leave a comment but everything that could be said has already been said. I have just discovered this tree series and it is breathtakingly beautiful and so redolent of ancient monoliths – standing sentries – marking time against the elements. Their ‘unveiling’ will be revealing and no doubt something else will emerge from under the covers. Is it a tradition to wrap small trees in the winter? Stunning, brilliant work and so accessible and open to multiple interpretations – thank you.

    1. Hi Veronica, thank you so very much. These were an interesting find – they were planted along the highway before the fall and they were wrapped to protect them from their first winter – they were not wrapped this winter. I couldn’t drive by without thinking of them as figures.
      Some people do wrap the smaller trees in the winter so the weight of snow and ice minimizes the damage.

      Your comments are very kind!

      1. They are a beautiful series Karen – it would almost be worthwhile to get permission to wrap them again next winter and re-visit re-shoot – the sentinel’s progress. Would their current size actually diminish their original power? I love your work thanks for sharing. regards Veronica

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