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Spring Storm, Hope Valley

Posted by
Don Smith (California, United States) on 20 June 2010 in Landscape & Rural.


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Juxtapositions are always fun to play with in nature and can come about in many forms: light, land, edges, colors, and yes, even seasons. In today's post, a late-spring snowstorm in the Sierra's Hope Valley adds a sense of drama to an already gorgeous high-country winter-like setting. For those of you in the United States old enough to remember, I was almost hoping the Marlboro Man would appear in the distance with his trusted stallion and his cowboy paraphernalia.

This is what I call one of those "transition days," which can be readily found in the the spring and fall. For me, spring is the transition from the chill of winter to the coming warmth of summer. I felt the foreground colors revealed the emerging spring growth and the dry grasses revealed a summertime look, all juxtaposed against a wintery backdrop of the Carson Pass.

Just prior to capturing this image, a heavy snow-squall moved rapidly across the valley; however, as quickly as it arrived it just as swiftly departed - such was the day in this high-country region. I also liked how the Carson River snaked though the mid-section of the frame and served as a link (so to speak) between the foreground and background elements.

Challenge yourself to find your own juxtapositions the next time you are out with your camera. If you are having trouble finding them, see if you can first verbalize them. They are fun to capture and will help take your images to the next level.

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