Gloomy Leaf - Photo Friday Challenge

Using a camera regularly forces you to look at things differently, whether through the lens or not.

It was a beautiful, sunny morning when I clicked on this week’s Photo Friday challenge. Gloomy? I thought. I know that I have plenty of photos I’ve taken in the past that were gloomy: storm clouds over a rough sea, a bank of menacing clouds in a late afternoon sky, a tree, or river, or boat in the fog. But, I wanted to take a picture today — on a bright, sunlit day — to fit the challenge of ‘Gloomy’. I didn’t have to think long before I thought of this tree. It was beautiful this spring as it bloomed and leafed out. I chronicled its blooming through March and April. However, as soon as the leaves were completely unfurled, the tree began to die. This leaf is not one of its remnants, though, but rather a lone oak leaf that landed on a bare twig, as if it found some solace in finding a final resting place with a dying tree.

I knew that I wanted to shoot this in B&W. After I captured the shot I wanted, I turned the camera off of monochrome for comparison. Interesting how the color affect the mood of the photo.

Gloomy leaf, made less so with color.

The second shot, with the saturation adjusted, making this gloomier than the original.

And, although I’m not in a melancholic mood, these shots reminded me of the last stanza of Verlaine’s Chanson d’Autumne.

Et je m’en vais
au vent mauvais
qui m’emporte
de çà, de là,
pareil à la
feuille morte.

In English:

and I let me go
where ill winds blow
now here, now there,
harried and sped,
even as a dead
leaf, anywhere.


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