Photo essay, one pix and that's all

... Short and quick, five shooters respond

from the SilverStringers

We're not superstars -- yet -- but wait a bit, we'll get there. We put the word out last week that the editors were going to run a photo essay, one shot each, free to the entire membership. Only five raised their hands on such sort notice.

But they are special pictures, you'll have to agree.

There were no rules stipulated, just provide some flick that your think is good, or represents some worthy message, or teaches us a new lesson. And that's what we got: A couple of statuesque mushrooms, Natalie's gorgeous pumphouse in fall, Louise's ice menagerie on the side of a Gloucester road, Carol's irony in the defacing of Roman statuary -- and finally, a placid farm scene of New England in winter, produced by Shirley.

Formally the five are Shirley Rabb, Natalie Thomson, Louise Fennell, Carol Nelson and me, Don Norris.

The notes provided by each picture are generally the authors -- not always, but mostly.

The good thing about this essay is that the pix will download relatively fast, but if you're connected to cable or DSL, you can view the screen-large versions that are linked. Just click the pix. And enjoy.

The team was doing Mount Hood in the southeast corner of Melrose last year when Natalie spotted the simple beauty of the old pumphouse, displayed in brilliant autumn plumage. While the others were distracted by the adjacent pond, she spent a dozen frames capturing this scene.

Louise, new to digital photography that winter morning but long on experience with standard cameras, spotted a pile of frozen reeds that had been splashed by traffic -- all on Cape Ann, near Gloucester, last January. She produced a sparkling series that early morning.

Long before Carol was old enough to join the SilverStringers, she had chance to wander through the ancient city of Madrid. It was the irony of this paradox that attracted her attention -- at least for this moment.

I (Don) have a thing for mushrooms. I can't tell one from the other, but their form and color fascinate me. My brother collects them for dinner, I collect pictures of them. One has to stoop to new lows to get a photo like this one.

And finally, Shirley gave me no details of how she did this picture of New England in winter. It is startling, yet consoling in its quiet stillness. She shot that tree from four different angles and left the choice up to the editors.

As for technical information from these five contributors, there is none, nobody bothers recording F-stops and shutter speeds anymore. Natalie, Louise and Don generally use digital Nikons, Shirley has a really tricked-out Olympus, and Carol, more intent on walking the streets of Europe, used a pocket point and shoot.

The Stringers will probably run this program again. So if you have a good shot you think would fit, email to us -- hopefully full size -- and maybe the Mirror will make some new friends.

March 3, 2006

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