Here we are. Winter is at its fullest and probably coldest. Whatever pictures you can take, the color is mostly lacking. Pictures of snow and ice, pictures of a bland sky or perhaps, if we are lucky a nice blue sky. All in all nice pictures, but still… I need some color sometimes. That’s why we have our photo albums,be it the paper ones or the digital ones.

Sometimes nature can give us a surprise. For this picture, my wife nearly kicked me out of bed in the early morning. She yelled at me: “Look in the sky Henk! This is unbelievable!”. So, I got out of bed with a sleepy head and looked out from the balcony in Kiev. And what I saw was  indeed unbelievable, I had never seen it before. This is what is called a “sun pillar”:

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Sun pillar or Light pillar in Kiev

The pillar of light is created by reflection on flat lying ice crystals in the air. It can only happen before sunrise or after sunset and in extreme cold. And since I was called out of bed, I found myself in my underwear by –27C on my balcony… (no comments…)

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Dragonfly on the borders of the Dnepr, Kiev

Summer colors. In summer some sources of color are really unexpected. And rather difficult to catch. With a P&S, the focus is of the matrix type, meaning that the background will always have the preferred focus. So I put my hand behind the insect, let the camera focus on the dragonfly, then remove the hand and shoot. I did need a few shots to get this one, not all dragonflies let me put my hand so close to them. With a DSLR there would have been no problem at all.

 

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Nearly painful to the eyes

A different country, different colors. Here on an exceptional warm day in April in Holland. Temperatures were far above 25C, in some places in the country over 30C. A good moment to go out for a ride. Many people have heard or read about the tulip fields in Holland. Their main purpose is to produce tulip bulbs, not flowers.

However, the flowers need to be fertilised in order for the bulb to grow flowers in the next season. Therefore, they keep the fields for a week or two. If you are lucky, the weather will be nice, like here and you can get beautiful pictures. Most of the fields have only one color of flowers, but if you watch closer, you can still find some intruders:

DSCN2648An intruder in a white tulip field

Just before and after winter, the colourful seasons have their high. Colors like these leaves (I had to be careful to keep my feet out of the frame):

DSCN0469Fallen leaves in Kiev

And after a long colorless winter and a wet spring with flooding and all, some color comes back. Here in Winnipeg the Assiniboine may give you some nice pictures, provided you arrive at the right moment.

DSC_4625The Assiniboine from the Osborne bridge

DSC_2374 Young green after a very long winter in Winnipeg

Once the green starts coming back everyone feels himself coming back to life. Looking up may give some striking pictures.

Color is the best thing you can photograph. Certainly in places where winter takes a long time to move out.