The Fen Trees – Test Print

Image of early evening forest by Roger Smith

On the way back to camp at the end of our first day of photographing in Yosemite we walked through a still forest. The depth created by the light through the atmosphere created a soft and mysterious presence. I stopped, took a breath, attempting to understand the uniqueness of what I was seeing…feeling.

Exhausted from a full day of exploring our favorite and new haunts, I kept the stillness and eloquently lit forested scene in the corner of my eye, kept the presence in my body, wondering if the light would get even better, the presence stronger, as I moved down the trail.

I opted to pass on the scene for no other reason than to get to camp and sit down (mistake number one for any photographer).

The following evening, retracing my steps, I set up my camera in “The Fen Forest” and exposed 3 negatives. The light, same as yesterday’s fading light, The Presence, ever present. While waiting for my 7 minute exposure, I sat quiet—listening, observing, resting, rejuvenating, excited for the potential of capturing this light and presence upon the silver-halide crystals of black and white film.

This first print feels off to me, the light magic and meditation not fully realized. Too much contrast? Hmmm, something is still missing.

Back into the darkroom…

← Back to The Dispatch for more Back to Top

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *