Sunday, June 23, 2013

"Land Spray" -- photo from Russian Ridge Open Space, California

"Land Spray"


What I love about long exposures is the way they take natural phenomena which occur on time and length scales that are difficult for us to observe, and map them onto a media which is more easy for us to parse. Take this image from the Santa Cruz Mountains of California, of fog creeping into a quiet valley in Russian Ridge Open Space. It just looked like fog to my naked eye, but the darkening light of twilight necessitated a long exposure, which revealed a more interesting interplay between land and air. The hills would disturb the air, pushing it upwards and causing additional fog to condense. The pattern continued until the air got blown over flatter ground, and had time to diffuse outward undisturbed, creating a uniform blanket. The phenomenon reminded me of the way mist is pulled from the tips of ocean waves by strong winds – a connection I couldn't see in real time.

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