About Me

My photo
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.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Spring Green

Spofford Village Spring

As the spring foliage in the Monadnock region has grown and matured to its settled summer green, it seems a good time for me to finish my “Spring Photography, Get Out of Isolation” series with a look at the richly varied hues of our early foliage.  Spring is a short but remarkable time for photography.  Much like autumn, which marks a brief transition from the extremes of summer warmth and the cold dormant months of winter, spring is the seasonal inflection point back to growth.  Both autumn and spring are brief times of change, but for all the momentary beauty of the fall colors, I believe that spring is more varied and interesting and has its own special attractions.

Westmoreland NH
Over the last couple of months, I have tried to show how photography can help provide an escape from the claustrophobia of our difficult, but important, period of self-imposed quarantine. With sensible precautions, nature and landscape photography can be safely pursued and while we are all carefully distancing from each other, we can still closely approach the glories of spring, especially with macro photography.

Spring Isolation Series
Partridge Brook Spofford NH

Park Hill, Westmoreland NH

In my early articles, I focused on the fantastic explosion of early buds, as our trees and shrubs rushed to begin their short season of photosynthesis.  I concentrated on macro photography, both outdoors and in the controlled environs of my studio.  This week I will celebrate the wide range of colors, mostly greens, that are on display for just a few days, from when the foliage first appears, until the chlorophylls settle into their, rich, maximally photosynthetic, greens.  This is a period about as short as that of the peak fall colors, and I find that it is just as spectacular.

As the leaves first arrive, they appear as a subtle dusting of color against the stark network of branches and often show a wide range of colors from deep red to orange and warm yellows. The variety of colors are usually best on the hillsides in diffuse overcast light, but as is true in the autumn, the spring colors are often most dramatic when seen in bright trans-illumination. 
Connecticut River Westmoreland NH

My restricted foliage view while stranded on our deck
One of favorite times of spring is when the leaves have expanded to cover much of the underlying branches, but before their colors have settled.  It is during this time that, on a hillside, a wide range of greens can be appreciated.  Sadly, this year it was precisely during this magic few days that I was frustratingly stuck at home by and infection in my knee which left me moving about on crutches or a walker.  My mobility, returned in several days, but by the time I was able to resume exploring, summer was largely established.

Gulf Road Curve Chesterfield NH

Roads End Farm Chesterfield NH
What I show here is a few early images from before my infirmity and several from the late spring color.  I can’t complain about what I missed, well clearly, I can, and have complained, but I am grateful for what I was able to experience this season.  I have many images from past springs and look forward future seasons of exploding green.

Fire Pond Reflection Spofford NH

For me, a wonderful new distraction has arrived.  After a careful period of self-isolation, Abigail, Grayson and, most importantly, our delightful 8-month-old grandson Owen, have arrived for an extended stay.  Needless to say, for a while, the primary subject of my photography will not be trees and shrubs.

Spring may be coming to an end but, sadly, despite all the political wishful thinking, the pandemic continues.  I hope you all stay safe and continue to find relief and joy from using photography to discover the unaffected natural beauty all around us.

Jeffrey Newcomer