Nightfall

WildflowersatDusk3

WildflowersatDusk_Spider

WildflowersatDusk1

WildflowersatDusk6

WildflowersatDusk7Last night I walked down to the river to watch the sun slip away – some evenings are flawless and you need to be out in them.

I was drawn to the gently swaying wildflowers (hoary alyssum, bertéroa blanc) backlit against the waning reflected light. Each of these photographs was made using in-camera double exposures and very little editing. This is what the camera saw. The images seemed to work better as double exposures, to carry more weight even though in a sense they are ‘lighter’, less literal. There are times when I think ‘abstracting’ a particular subject may express it more fully. Like the sense of a lovely summer evening sitting on damp grass and fading into the night.

DuskRiverHow the river looked, doubly exposed. If you look carefully (click to enlarge) you will see a tiny sailboat near the horizon.

© Karen McRae, 2013

78 thoughts on “Nightfall

  1. Karen, these photos are so beautiful. At first I thought the plant was chicory with its sky blue flowers. Perfect evening and perfect photos – they take you to another place by looking at them.

    1. Yes, these little flowers are white, just blue from the light of late day. White flowers can be very versatile to photograph. I do love the blue of chicory, though.
      Thanks for your comment, Judy.

  2. These could only be summer..the contrasting blues and soft terracotta oranges…the double exposure showing water in the air…the settling humidity of evening. I could look at these for hours and feel I’ve been there on other perfect evenings. So expressive and lovely…thank you

  3. These are beautiful. I agree with you – abstracting can communicate the essence of an image sometimes, better than a straightforward photo of the thing itself might.

  4. I couldn’t agree more with what you said about how abstracting something can somehow better capture the feel of the scene. I often do that myself, whether it’s through double exposures or un-focussing, and it’s always very satisfying when it works. You can just achieve a more painterly result that way. Who said everything has to be pixel sharp?

  5. Before I caved in for the whispering pillow last night, these photos were the last thing I looked at. I slept very well by the memory of immense beauty unfolding in the subtle shadows of the horizon. Serene, silent. Stunning.

  6. Well, you just made me swear spontaneously. Totally agree that the technique lends the images more weight – they’ve got a real resonance, they’re dreamlike and offer a way in for the viewer, (a space to get lost in), where a straight shot presents a closed door. I like them. 🙂

    1. Ha! What a great comment, Richard. Thank you!
      I guess I’m really late to responding to this one but it’s hard to keep up with all the comments sometimes – there are not enough hours in the day…

  7. These images are breath-taking!! I love the subtle color changes throughout some of the images, from light to darker blues. The shot of the river is just like a dream, ethereal and calm. Great shots, all!!

  8. These are terrific. I very much like the spider one. And the last one launches in my mind a theory that Turner saw the world doubly exposed and painted what he saw.

  9. Karen, Thanks for your perceptive comments on my work. I’m being given a retrospective at Eastern Connecticut State University, opening on Oct.. 24. If you are in the neighborhood, , I can thank you in person.

    1. Maurice, I wish I was able to go, it would be a pleasure.
      I’m up in Canada however and don’t foresee being in Connecticut at that point in time, but If I were it would be an honour to meet you.
      Congratulations and best wishes!
      Karen

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