Springtime in the mountains is always something I look forward to. The sense of anticipation of spring really begins to build and I can't get to the Smokies quite fast enough! Part of the excitement is the unknown. Although I've been to the Smokies every spring for many years, each visit reveals something new. There is the risk I suppose of returning to the same place over and over and simply photographing the same subjects in the same way. That's certainly a possibility. But I tend to take the opposite view. I don't think you can really know and photograph a location deeply unless you're there through the seasons and over the course of several years to experience the moods and subtle qualities that define a place.
This year is a great example. Spring was 7-10 days later than normal. It's really unusual to see the Trillium at peak and the Redbuds on display at the same time. Normally by mid April the Redbuds are long gone and most the the Trillium are past their peak. I think too that once you've photographed some of your favorite subjects and are happy with the images you're more free to explore other subjects that you've passed by or overlooked before. Photographing the landscape is often about balance. Balance in your composition and balance in your decision to photograph the familiar or explore something new. I'm glad that this spring I was able to visit the familiar and explore some new subjects.
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