Monday, May 20, 2013

Spring raindrops

Spring raindrops, a set on Flickr.

Spring in Belgium is not about sunshine and mild temperatures. Other than the daylight getting longer, and the sun trajectory closing to the center of the sky sphere, for the rest the weather we experience is more like autumn than spring. Extremely humid that is, with scarce sunshine, temperatures in the single digits, and if we are lucky reaching mid tens. Drizzle rain and chilly winds. However, plantation does it's own thing. Per it's biological clock, it gets time to grow new leaves on trees and plants and the most beautiful green comes to light and boasts its colors with pride. For plants, raindrops are quite good. Leaves do love the sunshine too, especially plant flowers do, and they rush to hide their precious petals away, when the drizzle stubbornly takes over.

I often photograph the green in spring. In days like today, the last bank-holiday of the season after Easter and before college exams, with not much else to do, I don't mind walking in the ultra thin drizzle raindrops, that feel more like a humid wave as the one from cooling sprinklers that spread their humidity upon vacationers in hotter venues. The only difference with here, it was simply around 10 degrees today, instead of 42.

I'm often using a telelens and a wide aperture to keep a shallow depth of field and to also move as close to the leaves as possible, and 'feel' what they feel, if they had a mind and soul, as they lie there, spread all over with raindrops sparkling like tiny rough precious stones. The leave green looks shiny and brilliant too this way, and it shows you a million different shades of green, from reddish and yellowish to bluish. With a billion variations of the green.

Despite the rain and cold nature takes its course one way or another. As I looked at the green in my garden, with a heavenly silence surrounding the space around me (as most people were hiding away in the safe shelter of their homes and resting), I felt like being inside a Japanese Zen. Green washed in raindrops as far as my eyes could see, as the growing greenness had hidden from sight all faraway buildings, and only my garage cabin insisted in showing off it's ugly gray concrete walls, the metal prefab roof and its remotely controlled ports made of synthetic material...

The known physical phenomenon of surface tension kept the drops hanging on leaves in positions that defied gravity. The same tension helped the raindrops to form little round bullets of water that kept dripping off when added mass from new rain eventually forced them to follow the laws of Newton, and seek shelter in the soil beneath. The scores of spider webs were also revealed to unassuming insects by the rain that formed tiny drops upon the web fibers. The hosting spiders themselves looked like they vanished too and had abandoned their treacherous web to the mercy of the drizzle.

Our two black tulips in the front garden looked like some jeweler decided to turn them into million dollar jewels for some vain sheikh from the oil rich Gulf States. In short, the colors of leaves and flowers looked simply stunning and the light played the most unusual games of light and dark. Needless to say, my 5D M-III Canon and its 135 fixed focal glass is the best gear on the planet to manage to capture this greatness. And the magic of internet is the next big thing that will allow you to verify the truth of my story, by linking to the Flickr set I posted here above.

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