The last week or ten days have been very hot and humid. Hot days are great for infrared. But, frequent threats of rain kept the clouds overhead almost all the time. When they were not totally covering the sun and creating a dreary sky, the clouds were very puffy, huge, varied in shape against the blue sky.
Hot, Sunny Days are Good for Infrared
When the humidity and the heat came down to a point not to bother me, I took walks. At other outings, as I drove here and there, and during the walks, in the parking lots, and at a special detour I took to get close to the wind turbines, I took many infrared photographs. The stark contrast between the clouds and the dark sky provided a nice backdrop for various subjects.
B&W Infrared, Carefully Toned
Before I talk about some of the photographs, let me say something about the processing. They are all captured with a Canon EOS M5 that was converted for infrared photography. I converted them to black-and-white, and split-toned. The colors you see in these photographs are in the tradition of darkroom toning, like platinum, bromoil, etc.
The last few are also coming from the same path, the toning colors perhaps being reminiscent of the greenish photographs we used to get after taking a roll of film to the local photographer. One, the Black-eyed Susan flowers,
I took the first couple of photographs outside the door of my doctor’s office in Providence at the corner of Waterman St. and Wayland Avenue. The stark metal structure of the lights towering over the soft clouds and the clouds mimicking the old house’s dome caught my eye. On the way home, I noticed the wind turbines were operational and took a detour by their location near Allens Avenue in Providence.
The streamlined shapes and white color of the wind turbines gave them a look as if made from cloud material, especially when they seemed to tower over huge puffy clouds. As luck would have it, a plane destined to the T. F. Greene Airport went behind one of them giving a couple of ironic frames. The huge wings of the turbines were moving while the structure was anchored to the ground, and the wings of the plane were traveling to a different destination while firmly fixed to the fuselage and not moving.
All week long, wherever you looked you would see clouds, some puffy, some whispy, oftentimes moving to drop their bucket somewhere. I photographed some clouds because of their interesting shapes and remembered the Equivalents series by Alfred Stieglitz. This I say not in a comparative way but an inspirational one. In a parking lot, I was drawn to small trees against the huge clouds as backdrops. The two were made for each other, and I managed to maintain their separation in a gentle, soft-handed way. In the same parking lot, the trees were reaching out to touch the clouds.
Then, we come to the intersection at the end of my street, mere five houses down. Spring Green Rd. extends to the other side of Narragansett Parkway into the neighborhood known as Governor Francis Farms. The centrality of the strong light appealed to me, remembered Fung Ho as I pointed my camera and noted the power lines running into the light! Turning left on the Parkway, at the corner of the next street, Fair St. was a gorgeous tall tree glowing in the sun. Returning home, I went by the white fence I photographed many times. The flower bed in front of it, along with a V-shaped set of tree trunks, created an interesting frame.
Along the way, I went by the usual wilderness blocks with ivy growing around trees, an interesting low-growing fern-like plant, and a bunch of Black-eyed Susans. Back at home, the tall and delicate Liatris created a lacy look. I decided to tone the low plant and the Liatris in the cool colors zone. The Black-eyed Susan cluster needed a different touch, with some local adjustments, I gave them a little edgy and surreal look.
Let me hear what you think, and I hope you enjoy them like I enjoyed making them as before.