I've always been fascinated by trees in winter. The bare branches often remind me of what you imagine the tendrils of some mythical creature might be, or what the neurons in your brain might look like. The stark shapes are both beautiful and sinister at the same time. There's something about the imagery of a bare tree that invokes something deep and emotional too. Perhaps it is a reminder of christmas in childhood or something more primal, a deep rooted subconscious reaction to the coldest months of the year.
The other day, I decided i'd take advantage of a rare sunny day and start a collection of these winter wonders. The light in winter is especially beautiful this time of year. When you manage to get a clear day that is. Mind you, it's not without its challenges. The dynamic range required to capture both light and shade with the low strong sun is a challenge for most cameras, so all you can do is try and make the best of it. Luckily with the bare shapes of leafless trees works well in strong shade. I tried my best to let the light give a nice backlight in some cases emphasising the shapes against the rich blue sky.
The golden light of the sun touching the branches is really beautiful in my opinion. As I said earlier, I love the winter sun. It's a challenge, but it can give really striking images once you tame it.
This shot (above) is one of those ones that makes me think of neurons and nerves in some giant alien brain.
For those interested in the technical side of things, these were all taken on a Canon 5DII, mostly at f8
I have some more shots of branches close up which creates a whole different kind of image and I'll post those in another article soon.