Summer surprised us

If unfamiliar, the title is pulled from the opening of Eliot’s “Waste Land,” one of the more haunting lines of the poem in my opinion. When the thermometer hit 93 today, I too, felt surprised by a season (minus the sense of Eliot’s impending dystopia). It’s been a dry spring and already a warm haze sort of diffuses anything in the distance. It feels like summer—surprisingly. The picture is of the dried lake bed of Lake Bistineau around a week ago and nearly the same temperature. The lake was drained well over a year ago in an attempt to kill off an invasive floating fern called Salvinia. Water was supposed to be allowed back to the lake in October, but obviously that hasn’t happened. It’s been nice to explore the bed and romp into areas normally inaccessible with the lack of water but the place is starting to suffer ecologically. In the background, you can see the distorted trunks of the cypress trees, bulged out where the water line used to meet.

As for processing, the landscape had a natural diffusion and haze. The Spanish moss only helps amplify a sense of drowsiness so I worked to bring out those elements. This was a bracketed shot so I merged to HDR in Photoshop. I set a tone curve after converting back to a 16bit file. In Lightroom I split toned with a green and a near pink color and tweaked some of the highlights with the tone curve and then dropped the clarity slider down a few notches.

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9 thoughts on “Summer surprised us

  1. Great picture, the post-editing really helps to bring out that warm hazy feel. Summer crept up on us here too, it was snowing a couple of weeks ago and now it’s lovely and sunny outside, not that I’m complaining!

  2. “ooh, pretty” just came out of my mouth as I opened this one up. Looks like a scene from an old Victorian novel. I can just imagine a couple in fancy clothes walking through. I can’t believe it’s so warm there. We still haven’t cracked double-digits (in Celsius) here. Snow is still covering the ground though it is quickly receding. I’m hoping the snow will be gone by the end of the month.

    • What you guys get in brutal winter we get in brutal summer. We had I think 90 straight 100+ days last summer, one of the worst. Summer runs here from May to early October, but this year it looks like it is trying to soak up April as well.

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