Long Valley, Idaho, USA by Shane Davila

Picture Story

I often see a scene and visualize something that may be slightly different than what is presented to me, my own vision, my own interpretation. We’ve all experienced when nature speaks to us, calls us to its subtle simplicity. As I drove along a road in the country side I spied these willows all alone in the distance. Is there something there which is photographically pleasing? I need to look harder but not necessarily with my eyes but instead with my vision. I put on my snowshoes and with my trusty dog Shadow we headed into the mystic to explore that which was calling me.

This simple scene would be quite ordinary if one were to pass by on the nearby road. In fact, I doubt that I would have recognized this as a possible compelling photograph had I not been looking hard for one. The combination of the distant willow bushes and the pleasing lighting drew my attention, captured my vision. The warm light scattered by the fog and reflected by the fresh snow created a subtle inviting glow enhancing the lonely willows in the distance. Recognizing these elements as components to my vision the scene called to me, urging me to find it. It is often the simplest of things that can speak with the loudest voice as this simple scene did to me. I’ve learned over and over that you don’t have to be in epic locations to see compelling visually driven photographic opportunities. You just have to be on a vision quest.

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