Happy Accidents!

Years ago I watched an oil painting instructor on public television named Bob Ross.  Not only was he a terrific painter, but he seemed so soft spoken that it really relaxed me just to watch the show.  Maybe some of you remember him but if not you can see some of his old shows on YouTube.  He used to say “we don’t make mistakes, we have happy accidents.”  He always made something out of nothing.  A few weeks ago up in the Berkshires with my good friend and shooting buddy Bruce Pitman, we went out early to get some of the famous Berkshire Fall color.  Things, however, seemed dull compared to past years but we persevered.  While riding around we came across a farm scene from the road so we stopped.  The composition was good but it was very cloudy and the colors were very muted.  I set up the tripod and decided to make three exposures at different settings.  Truthfully I thought it was a big mistake.  Below is one of the three images before editing.  It’s called “Berkshire Farm In Autumn #1.”

Berkshire Farm In Autumn 2

As you can see not very impressive at all.  But when I got back home and loaded the images into Lightroom I said let’s take a chance and I put the three images into an HDR program called Aurora 2019.  HDR stands for High Dynamic Range.  The program combines the three images to come up with the best exposure in one image.  Below is the final image with the same name without the #1.

Berkshire Farm In Autumn

The final image is one I can be proud of – a “happy accident.”  As is the case when you are out shooting atmospheric conditions change, sometimes quite frequently.  As Bruce and I set up to photograph a stand of trees he spotted, low and behold the sun graced the scene before us and we quickly made some exposures.  Below is “Colorful Trees.”

Colorful Trees

My last photo this month is one of my new favorite water shots.  When I shoot water I usually slow down the shutter speed to get what I call the cotton candy effect.  This time I decided to stop the action and show the white water around that crystal clear and colorful rock.  It is called “River Flow, The Berkshires.”

River Flow, The Berkshires

I hope you enjoyed reading this month’s blog as much as I enjoyed writing it.  Just a personal note for any of my readers in the Morristown, NJ area, I will be teaching an adult beginner photography course at Morristown High School in April and I hope some of you will attend.  The adult school catalogue will be coming out after the new year.  Until next month “keep shooting.”

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