April is a month of transition in the Northeastern US and especially so in the Hudson Valley. Snow is often on the ground at the start of the month and trees are flowering by the end. These unpredictable, fast moving and ever changing conditions are some of the reasons that I love living and photographing here. Compared to last month’s favorites, we’re finally seeing some warmth and green in the landscape!
I usually share these photos on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Google+, along with camera, lens and exposure info. Make sure to give me a follow on any of those networks to see what I’m posting throughout the month. These were all taken with the Olympus OM-D E-M5. Enjoy!
At the beginning of the month we still had a fair amount of ice in shaded areas, but heavy rains and a gradual warming of temperatures helped get rid of it at the lower elevations. This was some of the last of it.
I’m always excited to find a new spot for photography, especially when it’s in my own backyard. Maybe it’s that I haven’t seen this area at the right time of year or right time of day, but I’ve lived in New Paltz for over 10 years and have never really photographed the Walkill River at the foot of town.
In the early part of the month, my wife and I were taking a walk at dusk in this area and the deep blue sky, placid river and the Shawangunk ridge all came together to create a beautiful reflection. At the time I only had my phone with me, but was determined to return with my OM-D and tripod when the conditions were right again. That weekend we took a walk and spent a (chilly) hour photographing the sunset. At this point, the warm days were giving way to cool nights, which was making for some beautiful late evening photography.
I liked this area so much that I had to return for a morning shoot. The landscape changes so dramatically during the first hour of sunrise that sometimes I’m scrambling around trying to catch the best light and angle for a photo. I often have to tell myself to slow down, observe and wait. This was one of those moments. Less than 30 minutes after the sun came up, the light was just catching the tops of the trees and reflecting back into the Walkill River. If I hadn’t slowed down, I probably would have missed it!
As the month progressed, we finally started seeing some buds on the trees and the clear, cool nights were making for beautiful scenery and sunsets.
As a landscape photographer, I pay a lot of attention to the color of the sky. We have blue skies in every season, but there’s something about the spring sky — the clarity, lack of haze and distinct color of blue, that sets it apart from the others.
It’s amazing what you can do with a fisheye lens in a tiny grove of trees. I took this with the Rokinon 7.5mm fisheye lens, a lens that I’ve really been enjoying lately. It’s completely manual and the aperture is set manually with a ring on the lens, so I often can’t remember exactly what it is. This was probably around f/16 though, in order to get the sunburst.
As the month came to a close, my wife and I were sitting out front of our house enjoying a beautiful afternoon with plenty of sun, fast moving clouds a deep blue sky. The moon was clear and bright, so I grabbed the tripod and put on the Olympus 40-150mm f/4-5.6 (My review here) to grab a few shots. While shooting, a plane made an appearance in my viewfinder, creating this beautifully surreal scene.
I would be remiss not to include a photo of my wife in my favorites of this past month, obviously a favorite for so many reasons. 🙂 She’s 28 weeks along in this shot, taken with the Olympus 45mm f/1.8 prime (My review here).
Except for my allergies, I’m pretty excited about the warmer weather we’re seeing. With the trees beginning to show leaves and the landscape greening up, the photo opportunities are changing daily.
Are you enjoying spring? What are you photographing? Let me know in the comments!
If you’re interested in any of the equipment used in this post you can get it through my Amazon links below. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and helps support this site. Thanks!