Monday, March 19, 2012

Makeup Post 2: Cross Creek

This post is to make-up for the trip I missed at Ohiopyle.  For this assignment, I went to Cross Creek for the day.  My family all went with me and we made a fishing trip out of it.  When we got to the main entrance of the park, the place seemed pretty crowded so we went to another entrance my dad knew of.  It was a pretty cool place covering the best of all worlds.  There was water, obviously, along with a wooded area, and a field area.  There was a lot going on and I had a bit of a tougher time focusing on the small things with so much to see, which wasn’t good because I never like them afterwards and they never make the cut during the editing process!  I really enjoyed taking a day off and relaxing while taking some photos of an area that I don’t visit too frequently.  I should really go there more often, as it’s not too far from my house.   I would like to go back to Cross Creek in the summer when everything is lush and green and there isn’t so much brown.  I had a good time photographing a little frog I found, since except for my pets, I don’t get to shoot wild animals since they’re so skittish.  This little guy let me get so up in his face, you’d think he was used to having giant humans put lenses in his face!

Makeup Post 1: Home Sweet Home

This post is to make up one of the earlier trips I missed to Trough Creek.  After everyone posting about their homes last week since many were there for spring break, I realized how instrumental my home was to my desire for creative photography.  The first nature shots I ever seriously took were most likely in my back yard.  It’s obviously a place I visit often yet I always seem to find different things to take pictures of, and rarely do 2 photos ever look the same.  It’s always bursting with some kind of different life, from flowers that we planted years ago that have cross-pollinated into strange new blooms, to the future forest of fruit trees my father planted, and even to the garden that’s always full to the top with raspberries and tomatoes in the summer.  On top of that there are the weird weeds that occur naturally, and of course, my pets.  Though I still haven’t fully fleshed out my reasoning behind photographing the little things, I find myself shooting them.  There something driving me to do it and hopefully I’ll be able to put that into words for you all soon.  Until then, enjoy these shots!

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Old House and the Blue Lake

Apologies in advance, because this is probably going to be a pretty lengthy post.  For my independent nature photo assignment, I decided to go back to a spot I visited last year.  It's a small chunk of land owned by my grandparents neighbors.  If you want to check it out on Google maps, the co-ordinates are 40.368397,-80.181672.  On satellite view, on the left of the screen you'll see the abandoned house and barn and to the right, a lovely polluted lake.  This photo from google looks like it was taken early last summer, the way I remember the place.  Sadly, some things have changed since then.  The subjects of the first photos here don't necessarily qualify as nature. At the same time though, they show a house, being abandoned and taken back by nature.  

 Again, to start off, here are a few photos from my project that I did here last year.  It was for my black and white photo class and it's probably my favorite project.  These few were taken digitally, the film ones are best though. (Click to check them out full size please!)
When I first went to this house, some kids had been there and had spray painted some stuff, but for the most part, the place seemed relatively untouched.  It's like it's original owners just up and left.  

Sadly, this time, it looks like someone has looted the house.  All of the old appliances are gone and someone has cut the wiring from the house.  On top of that, the second floor of the house is no longer accessible as the stairs were far to mushy for me to risk going up them.  Here's a few shots from inside the house now. 

Outside the house, there are numerous barns and sheds.  Here's a few shots from those:

Now, the part I was aiming for to take my "nature" photos as was this little blue lake.  I believe old mining has left something (sulfur?) to seep into the little creek and pond.  The creek that feeds into the stream is bright orange.  I guess sulfur because it smells like eggs!  Anyway, the pond it leads into is this peaceful, eerie blue, surrounded by woods.  Or should I say was.  
Side by side, these are photos I took.  One was taken last June, the latter, on Saturday.

This isn't the same angle or anything, but it's taken of and from the same area.  The far side of the pond isn't empty because the trees have no leaves, it's empty because the trees are gone.  The housing plan that was built on the other side apparently hadn't cut down enough woods, so they cleared this all out, bulldozed it, and put down gravel.  It's looking like a nice site for some new houses.  The last time I was here, a family of beavers was living in it.  They're still around, but probably not for long of the contractors have their way.  It's sad to see such a peaceful little place destroyed to make way for a row of cookie cutter houses.  I never really counted myself as the "tree hugger" type, but this really bothers me.  It doesn't even bother me that old mining is polluting the creek.  I think it's awful that that we are destroying these last little pockets of beauty that are tucked around in PA.  The above photo is of the original dam that feeds from the pond.  The rest of these photos are just from the rest of the trip.  It's sad to see such a pretty little place destroyed.  

This photo isn't great, but these little guys were growing straight up out of the dam!