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Spofford, New Hampshire, United States
Jeff Newcomer had been a physician practicing in New Hampshire and Vermont for over 30 years. Over that time, as a member of the Conservation Commission in his home of Chesterfield New Hampshire, he has used his photography to promote the protection and appreciation of the town's wild lands. In recent years he has been transitioning his focus from medicine to photography, writing and teaching. Jeff enjoys photographing throughout New England, but has concentrated on the Monadnock Region and southern Vermont and has had a long term artistic relationship with Mount Monadnock. He is a featured artist in a number of local galleries and his work is often seen in regional print, web publications and in business installations throughout the country. For years Jeff has published a calendar celebrating the beauty of The New England country-side in all seasons. All of the proceeds from his New England Reflections Calendar have gone to support the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program at the Cheshire Medical Center. Jeff has a strong commitment to sharing his excitement about the special beauty of our region and publishes a blog about photography in New England.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

First Snow

Yesterday we had our first snow of the season here in southwestern New Hampshire.  No matter the date, first snows always seem to be a surprise, but when "measurable precipitation" occurs in October it is not only surprising , but also a visual treat.  Typically our first coating occurs sometime after the leaves have fallen in November,  when we are all desperate to cover the drabness of "stick season" with a pristine frosting of white.  When winter storms strike early they can blast the remaining fall foliage from the trees, but given the right conditions, they  can also spread a beautiful white frosting on the colorful leaves.  The stark contrast between vibrant reds and golds and the clean white of freshly fallen snow is fantastic, but short lived.

Roads End Farm, Chesterfield New Hampshire

Friday morning offered such a special opportunity.  We live in the hills between Keene New Hampshire and Brattleboro Vermont and had just enough snow to coat the trees without totally obscuring the foliage.  I was excited to get out to shoot, but was frustratingly tied to home waiting for the furnace guy to show up for our pre-winter cleaning.  As it turned out I was able to get some of my best shots around the house.  When I was finally able to leave I was happy to find that the snow was sticking longer than usual.  The time after a storm when the snow is still clinging to the trees is a winter "golden hour".  David Middleton, a great photographer and teacher from Vermont, calls these his "winter wonderland" shots.   It is the time when snow is the most magical, and it is often quite fleeting.  As the morning temperature raises above freezing it seems that the snow comes off the branches all at once with one disappointing plop, but yesterday things held together into the early afternoon.  

For much of today the "winter wonderland" was only a memory, actually a memory and about 200 images.  But this evening the snow has return with a vengeance.  By morning we may have over one foot.  I have to suspect that all this October winter must be in response to all the whining I have done about the terrible color this autumn.  Whatever the reason, in New England,  we all know that the only abnormal weather is normal weather and that's why it is such a great place for photography.  

Now let's see if I can get this posted before the power goes out!

1 comment:

  1. Great series of shots; and I love your expression "a white frosting on the leaves"