Northwoods Project – Work in Progress
In 2014 the first dedicated photo trip to the Upper Midwest region known locally as The Northwoods occurred and marked the beginning of my Northwoods project. As we begin 2017 I can say with certainty the Northwoods project will be lasting for a while to come. The more I shoot the Northern Wisconsin and Michigan UP locations the more photo opportunities are revealed and during 2016 two more photo trips were completed. A June trip encompassed approximately 1,700 miles, photography began in Marinette Wisconsin continuing to Baraga Michigan and the Keweenaw Peninsula, to Hurley Wisconsin and points in between. During the trip 9 waterfalls and 3 lighthouses were photographed. Waterfalls included Black Slate, Potawatomi, Dave’s, Eagle River, Gorge, Jacobs, Long Slide, Silver, and Twelve Foot Falls. Lighthouses shot were Copper Harbor, Eagle Harbor, and Marinette North Pier.
In October I returned to the Upper Peninsula region specifically Ontonagon, Michigan traveling another 1,310 miles and photographed 6 waterfalls, the Ontonagon Lighthouse, and many off road scenes capturing fall color. Waterfalls included a return visit to Black Slate Falls first photographed in June, and Manabezho & Manido Falls previously photographed in 2015. In addition to the sites deemed worthy of a second trip, Bonanza, Canyon, and Overlooked Falls where included in the October trip.
Over the two 2016 Northwoods trips I took 1,874 raw photos resulting in at last count 130 (Finished) photos with post processing of the October trip still being completed. The plan for 2017 includes visiting the northeast section of the Michigan Upper Peninsula to capture more waterfalls scenes such as Upper and Lower Tahquamenon falls and other great scenery. Another untapped and target rich area is eastern Minnesota along the western shore of Lake Superior. Essence of the Northwoods Volume 2 may not be far away. Lighthouses are another subject I’m beginning to focus on, the shores of Lake Michigan and Superior offer many subjects and they will be included in future photo trips.
In November 2015 I joined the Naperville Photo Group (Meetup Group). They are a very active group with multiple events scheduled each week. The first event I attended was the opportunity in January to shoot the historic Tivoli Theater in Downers Grove, Illinois. The group leader, Bruce Jones obtained exclusive access for 2 hours on a Sunday morning and it was a wonderful experience. The results of that event may be seen in the (Artifacts and Culture) gallery. The group has also undertaken a few charity events to benefit the Naperville Human Society. (Photos with Pets). For a small donation to NHS, families and their companion animals got a 30 minute sitting with photographers from the photo club resulting in a family portrait and digital files. For two of those events I set the camera aside and gained experience as a photo assistant.rights/copies. You don't have to have a pet to participate! R
The local Brookfield zoo was the scene in May for practice shooting the 70-300mm lens combined with a 2X Tele converter which necessitated all manual focus. A few shots came out very well including the male Lowland Gorilla who was approximately 80 yards away and in low light.
Finally, the year was closed out with an evening at The Morton Arboretum taking in the “Illumination” show, (Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum). That was a learning experience, it was snowing about 1” per hour, temperature around 18 degrees which created a challenge to keep gear free from snow while getting clean shots. Photos from this shoot may also be seen in the (Artifacts and Culture) gallery.
Looking forward to 2017!