Saturday, July 25, 2009

Chuck The Writer Shoots the Waterfalls at Poestenkill Gorge

Of the four photos I wanted to submit to the Altamont Fair photo competition, one of the quartet just didn't grab me. Try as I might, I could not get a decent capture of the Oakwood Cemetery waterfall without climbing down a very unsafe ravine.

I wanted another waterfall shot, if for no other reason than I used the title I had originally assigned to the Oakwood Cemetery waterfall shot - "Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls" (Psalms 42:7) for the title of the photo - I needed another waterfall shot, without having to traipse all the way over to Buffalo.

What to do ... what to do ...

Solution - Last year I purchased a book that was written by the Rensselaer County Land Trust, and it featured hundreds of locations throughout the area. I ended up choosing the waterfalls at Poestenkill Gorge, right in the heart of Troy.

Saturday afternoon - sun was beating down like crazy, the UV index must have been above infinity. I had to climb down a very rocky and uneven path, until I came to the base of the Poestenkill Gorge. And staring right up at me was the waterfall, cascading over dark black shale rock.

Up with the tripod. Out with the D700. And with all five of my lenses, and with the nerve of someone willing to stand on the last semi-anchored rock with a $3,000 camera and hard-to-replace lenses, I got some fantastic shots of the waterfall. Although the trend now is to get rivers and waterfalls with long exposures, to give them a mystical, otherworldly look, I chose instead for an instant capture, with the goal of expressing the power of the waterfall as it splashed on the rocks.

So this photo - along with my captures of the RCA dog statue in downtown Albany, the D&H railroad bridge in Slingerlands, and the midnight shot of the park benches at Washington Park in Albany - will be my entries for the Altamont Fair photo contest.

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