Peak Autumn Color

This weekend should have been peak autumn color in southeast Iowa. Unfortunately, earlier this week overnight temperatures plummeted into the 20’s and zapped the brilliant colors. It’s always frustrating when mother nature doesn’t cooperate, especially when you have a day set aside for traditional landscape photography. And the wind, I don’t know which was worse, last weekend or this weekend. The muted colors reminded me of the dark golds, avocado greens, burnt oranges and rusts of the 70’s. So much for peak autumn color.

I haven’t been out shooting since before the pandemic. Last weekend I worked with the wind and created images using the ICM technique. There were several trees that were still green and I was looking forward to seeing the autumn colors at their peak. Geode State Park is known for its brilliant shades of yellow, orange and red. And at the right time of day, the lake is a beautiful blue.

As I was wandering around and getting ideas for the golden hour, I saw my brother and sister-in-law driving through the park on this gorgeous Indian summer day. We chatted for a while and they continued on their drive and I continued looking for brilliant color. It was a great day to be walking the trails and being outside or driving your convertible.

Mother nature sure made me work hard this year to make images of autumn color. Although I took all my camera gear, which weighs about 25 pounds, I only used one lens. No macro photography this year, quite unusual for me.

These are the images I made today. You may click on any of the images to view a larger image.

And that’s a wrap for peak autumn color in Southeast Iowa..

Autumn In The Midwest

It’s autumn in the midwest and the colors in some areas are at or near peak color. The next couple nights the temperature will be dropping into the 20’s, which is quite unseasonable. Will the leaves all drop before reaching peak color? We will know in the next day or so. It is autumn in the midwest and while the next couple nights are expected to be unseasonably cold, next weekend it’s suppose to be in the mid 70’s.

I wanted to get outside and see the autumn color before it quickly disappears. It was quite windy today, anything but unusual for Iowa. Certainly not the conditions typically wanted for nature photography. However, it was an ideal day for intentional camera movement (ICM) images.

ICM is a technique I learned in 2012 while attending a photography workshop in Acadia National Park. It was fun! It’s been a few years since I made images with this technique and was unsure if I would be successful. While pressing the shutter, you intentionally move your camera. You want movement and sometimes complete blur and only the colors are distinct. Today, I wanted movement, but just enough so that you still knew my subject. Sort of like an impressionist painting.

Some may say it’s a blurry photo and others will see and appreciate the artistic perspective. The artistic side of photography is what appeals to me and being someone who tends to be more left-brain, it is a challenge. You can’t move your camera just any direction, there has to be thought to it. What is the outcome you are looking for, what story are you wanting to tell?

Below is my favorite image of the day to show autumn in the midwest!