Claude Monet, French Impressionist painter, was one of the founding fathers of a style of painting which emphasized very thin brush strokes and accurate interpretation of light. It should seem only fitting that this concept of accurate representation of light should be reproducible with a camera. And, this is what I attempted to do in this photograph I have titled “Monet Branches”.
According to the Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary, Impressionism is defined as a theory or practice in painting especially among French painters of about 1870 of depicting the natural appearances of objects by means of dabs or strokes of primary unmixed colors in order to simulate actual reflected light. The question becomes how to reproduce the dabs and strokes of a paintbrush on a photograph. The solution came to me while out shooting fall colors with fellow photographer, Lynne.
Indeed, I was out trying to capture fall colors, but I wanted to capture it in a different way. I was not just trying to reproduce the ubiquitous fall photos of vibrant colors that spread for miles around. I wanted to bring something unique. I got my answer when I pointed my camera down looking at the reflection of the branches and sky above.The colors were already vibrant and that was emphasized by the setting sun which added more punch to the already saturated yellows. Further, a gentle breeze on the reflections created minute ripple effects which added texture to the photo. This created my much needed brush strokes which transformed my image into a painting of light. In fact, the only thing which betrayed the idea that it was a reflection, not a painting or an effect caused by smearing my lens with some sort of gel, was the small ripple which emanates from the far right of the photograph due to something touching the surface of the water.
Personally, I would have preferred more vibrant, punchy colors to contrast against the blue sky. Reds, I believe, would have given that much needed punch. However, I enjoy the subtle, soft and calming tones of this photo – my Monet Branches.