Plans for 2016

Over at Cardinal Guzman’s site, he’s running a year-long challenge. It’s called #TheChangingSeasons.

I’m excited about joining in on the challenge because my interest in photography waxes and wans during the year. I think by committing to this challenge, it will prompt me to do a thing I’ve meant to do since I moved down to wine country: photograph a grape-vine.

Or rather, a vineyard.

You see, the lowly grape-vine (of which many rely on for their nightly succor, i.e. their glass of wine) goes through an amazing transformation throughout the year.

It’s starts out like a dead thing, just a gnarled piece of wood lashed to a stake. But come spring, the vines transform into sinuous arms reaching for the sky, with tiny, fragile buds at their tips. Then they leaf out and can literally form a jungle of vines reaching across the aisle for each other, but they rarely get to meet because then the pruning crew comes in and cuts them into shape.

And then the grapes come. Small and hard and bitter. Then they grow. They sweeten. They are harvested. During the fall, as the temperatures drop, the leaves go from green to gold and deep red. It is a beautiful sight to see before the winds come and tear them all away.

I hope to capture this transformation.

I’ll experiment a bit on location. There are a few options around the vineyard I live next to. Actually, there are two vineyards. There’s a conventional vineyard (with the vines staked and trained along wires) and across the street there is a head-pruned vineyard (with the vines solitary and allowed to branch out from the top of the vine-trunk).

I’m looking forward to Guzman’s #TheChangingSeasons challenge. It is something I’ve wanted to do for a while. I keep thinking I need to improve my skills, but how else will I improve my photography if I don’t just do it?

Wish me luck.

Spring shot in the vineyard.
Spring shot in the vineyard.
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