Snowshoe Adventures, Part 1

Since the holidays have ended, I'm taking a short break from printmaking to collect my thoughts and figure out what to work on next. Rest assured, I'll be back at the press soon, as I signed up for an etching class at BCA yesterday. Finally, I'm getting a chance to try something I've wanted to learn for years; huzzah!

In the meantime, I've recently discovered snowshoeing, and I can't tell you how liberating I find it. When I have these strapped onto my feet, I feel like an Arctic explorer, fearlessly trudging through the wilderness in search of wonder and discovery. Okay, so I've only gone a couple miles from my house at most, but hey, a little make-believe never hurts, right?

Now that I've got the freedom to wander off paved, salted roads and get back into nature, I've been taking my camera along with me. For the next few weeks then, I'm going to share the pictures I've been taking with you. Some of these might inspire future prints, but at this point I'm just enjoying being outside. Enjoy!

Here's are some shots of the mine by my parent's house in Maine. I loved the blue of the sky and snow shadows.

This is an abandoned quarry out in the same area:

Here we are back in Vermont. I'm looking at a frozen creek not far from my apartment, on a trail in LaPlatte Nature Park. It's a delightful labyrinth of paths, located behind the town post office.

The pictures shown below were also taken at LaPlatte Nature Park, but here I focus on the details rather than the larger landscape.

To me, winter is the season of minimalism. Whereas autumn is a baroque celebration of colors and textures, winter snow strips away excessive ornamentation, leaving us to focus on the sparest details. Skeletal plants, those scraggly remnants of the previous season's exuberance, suddenly become startlingly beautiful.

My snowshoes have definitely helped me appreciate the season by allowing me to get back out into it. Rather than dismiss winter as a season of bleakness then, I'm embracing its distinct aesthetic.