Weathered Wood

As we were driving along the Avenue of the Giants we drove across a very cool looking bridge over Elk Creek*. Just after the bridge was a pull-off, so we parked and walked a path down to the creek. There aren’t a whole lot of deciduous trees, so there weren’t many changing leaves. I took some pictures of what yellow leaves I could find–took pictures of the girls playing in the stream–took pictures of the bridge overhead–then I noticed this wood. I fell in love with this wood, or at least, was fascinated by it. It is so beautiful.

Weathered wood sits in a stream. Not So SAHM

Weathered Wood – ProjectEdit365 – 22 Nov

*Google Maps is amazing. I didn’t remember what the creek was called (this trip was two years ago), but I had taken a picture of the distinctive bridge. I searched along Avenue of the Giants and found the places where a stream crossed the avenue under a bridge. I then zoomed in with the little person for a 360 view and was able to find the exact stream and bridge where we stopped.  Maps has helped me many times find places we’ve previously visited.

The original photo was dull. I wanted to bring out the texture. Even though I liked the coolness, I decided to warm it up ever so slightly (that really makes the moss pop). I increased the contrast and clarity, and I lowered the highlights and brightened the shadows. I sharpened and then reduced the noise. I used adjustment brushes to further increase the contrast and clarity of the exposed wood pieces, and reduced the exposure just a touch on the top wood. Here’s the original:

22nov

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Nature’s Giants

We drove through the Avenue of the Giants in Humboldt County, stopping whenever we wanted to walk through the woods and explore. Whether the trees were standing or had fallen, their massive sizes left us awestruck. The tallest tree we saw on our trip was “Giant Tree”, which is 363 feet tall (111m) and has a circumference of 53 feet (16m). To put that in perspective, a football field is 360 feet long (including the end zones).

Walking amongst the giants, I got a sense of how awesome God is. These trees have been on this earth for hundreds and hundreds of years. Some of the oldest were growing when Jesus walked the earth. They have quietly stood the test of time. Peace and wonder almost overwhelmed me and I became completely engrossed in this otherworld that I had the privilege of being a part of for a short time. They have so many stories and secrets to tell. Maybe that’s why I was quietly and reverently winding my way through the paths. Would they give anything away? I left their sanctuary not smarter, but wiser perhaps.

The girl in the picture below is my then seven-year old daughter. You can also see my husband. Use them as a reference point to get a sense of how massive these trees are. And these are not record holders.

Two girls are dwarfed by the giant redwoods surrounding them. Not so SAHM

Nature’s Giants – ProjectEdit365 – 20 Nov

The original was too cool for the feeling I was going for. I warmed up the picture and increased the clarity.  I decreased the contrast, exposure, highlights and lightened the shadows. I used a graduated filter on the bottom third of the photo to bring the exposure up just a little, to get a little more detail in the bark. I finished with a small vignette. Here’s the original:

20nov

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Magical Woodland

If you ever have the chance to visit the redwoods in Humboldt County, California, DO IT. Put it on your bucket list. This shot doesn’t even do justice to the grandeur of the trees themselves (because these redwoods are on the smaller size). The giants of the natural world really have to be seen in person to understand their size, and to feel their magic.

A pathway cuts through the underbrush in a redwood forest. Not So SAHM

Magical Woodland – ProjectEdit365 – 19 Nov

The original was just drab. I warmed it a little, increased the exposure, and lightened the black. I adjusted the tone curve to make it just a little matte (which I’m loving right now). I used a graduated filter to slightly warm up just the sunlight; a radial filter to sharpen the path and soften the surroundings; and some adjustment brushes to slightly increase the exposure on the pathway. I sharpened the whole picture and added a vignette. Here’s the original:

19nov

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Wild mushrooms

Small, unassuming

Never to gain much stature

Nestled with giants

Tiny mushrooms grow in a forest in Humboldt County California. Not So SAHM

Wild Mushrooms – ProjectEdit365 – 11 Nov

We found these little guys in Humboldt County, California while we were visiting the redwoods. The minuscule and the majestic in a symbiotic relationship. I cropped the original photo to focus more on the mushrooms. I lowered the highlights and increased the shadows. I used a radial filter to decrease the exposure around the mushrooms. I also decreased the noise just a little. Here’s the original:

11nov

 

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