I have a real thing about trees. That wasn’t always the case. Sure, some were nice to look at, and the wind roaring through their branches sounded neat. A regal pine alone on a hilltop or the delicate fronds of a weeping willow floating on the breeze warranted an admiring glance. But until I viewed trees through a camera’s lens I never noticed their timeless beauty. One summer afternoon after acquiring my first digital camera I roamed my brother’s yard searching for photo ops. Spying a quaking aspen near the driveway, I walked over, aimed the camera skyward through the branches, then checked the viewer to see what wonders I had wrought. A delightful, intricate pattern of leaves overlaid the clear blue sky. Magic mingled with the sunlight filtering through the foliage. That was back in 2007 and I still view trees with awe and wonder.
A trip to Canby Grove, Oregon during the summer of 2008 further fueled my new-found passion. I followed an inviting path ever deeper into an enchanted world. The sunlight filtering through those emerald canopies bathed the woods in ethereal glow.
Overhead, the leaves and branches formed striking, almost web-like images against the sky:
I found even those with arthritic limbs beautiful. The one on the left stood outside my hotel window along the Columbia River:
But what I find especially intriguing are the different shapes in trunks and branches, some of which I did not detect until after I took the shot.
A wishbone and tornado:
Spider legs and a tree sprite:
Wonder of wonders, I even saw Treebeard strolling by!
A little farther down the path I rounded a corner and spotted something that looked at first like a gigantic claw. A closer look closer, however, revealed the head and neck of a sleeping pony draped across the log.
Other folks might see something entirely different—maybe just a tree or a wad of roots. I have a vivid imagination, and it doesn’t take much for me to see all kinds of fantastic creatures. I guess that’s just the child in me. But that’s the part that still believes in magic and dares to dream. May I never grow old.