Brass Valley: The Fall of an American Industry

Brass Valley: The Fall of an American Industry
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Sunday, February 7, 2010

White Silence No. 2

PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL: A snow storm is a very private place where the landscape is made new; the trees stand out from the hillside, the ground is as bright as the sky, the falling snow is a skrim that sets the receding rows of hills apart, and every tuft of grass on the hillside that pokes above the snow makes its mark to reveal the torso of the land. And even as the veil of snow sculpts space, it fills it. It muffles sound and sets me apart, and as it settles over everything it almost seems to stop time or to enter a new dimension entirely.

My pleasure is wandering there as the hills and trees shift around me until the parts converge and something makes me stop and shoot, some sudden harmony or balance or snow flowers, newly blossoming. They grab the foreground and my tripod. As I wander, the snow is often changing, all at once pellets become large flakes, then they are sand crystals, the wind blows or it is still or the snow stops briefly and the color of the distant hills is suddenly more saturated. Then, in the distance I may see the next assault, the veils of snow closing in again. Being there in the solitude of snow is its own reward, seeing with new eyes and wondering at it all.