Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Dorothy Lake

My wife's Grandmother has a delightful little trailer on a nearby lake called Dorothy Lake in Whiteshell Provincial Park. This is *exactly* what I needed, some new sights to see, and some familiar sights to share.

My first attempts at landscape photography are included in this set, and I clearly need work at it. A graduated neutral density filter would be handy as well.

Everything was shot handheld with the 17-55mm kit lens, generally at f8 or f9 for the landscapes, and f5.6 or so for the remainder. As a 'walking around' lens it's my best option at the moment, but I've already developed a deep and abiding mancrush on the 24-105mm f4L and it might be the first lens I purchase for days like this.

Here are the shots that I kept from the 120 or so that I took.

Whiteshell Road

This is the main road that snakes through the Whiteshell. I have read that 'S' shapes are pleasing in landscape shots, and I agree. The shot is one of the better exposed ones I took that day, as you will see a lot of blow-out in the sky in some of the other frames.

Path the the Beach at Dorothy Lake

If you head to your right from the location of the last shot, you cross a small park and head out to the beach. The beach is accessed through a treeline cut through in numerous places with footpaths. This picture was an attempt at framing the beach and water using the surround trees. I think I like this the best of the landscape photos.

Tidal pool and path at Dorothy Lake

The beach itself if a narrow strip of sand, maybe twenty feet wide. It stretches a few hundred feet and at one end, you find this small path the leads back to the park. I was still looking for interesting framing when I took this picture, but I think the previous picture was better overall, and the blown-out sky here is distracting.

The stagnant pool in the foreground was a happy little mosquito breeding ground. I paid for this picture in blood, literally.

Rocks at Dorothy Lake

The Whiteshell is right on the Canadian Shield so you find vast sections of stone with a few tough shrubs, scraggly trees and tenacious lichen clinging about. I have no idea if this shot works at all. The camera was level when the photo was taken, so the slope of the rock is accurate.

One of the landscape techniques I read about mentioned using a nearby object to provide interest and depth over the whole photo, so I worked the tree on the left into the frame, but in hindsight, it's not nearly noticeable enough to alter the overall picture. Live and learn.

Path at Dorothy Lake Campground

This little path leads from the the campgrounds to the access road (and the washrooms). The little bridge has been there as long as I have been visiting the lake, and this little bridge is, for whatever reason, one thing that I will always remember about Dorothy Lake.

Creek at Dorothy Lake

This is a view of the little creek that the bridge from the last picture crosses. You can see another little bridge further down. I liked the shadow and light in this picture, but it's a bit busy. Not the best shot, but still a pleasant one.

The landscapes are done, but I found a few more subjects of interest.

Grandma at Dorothy Lake

And here is the grand lady herself, my wife's Grandma, watching the grandkids and great-grandkids play in the water. I have better exposed and better composed pictures of her sitting in this spot, but I love her expression in this one. Love this picture.

Flowers and a visiting Bee

I stopped to check out these interesting little flowers and saw the bee. I didn't have access to my extension tubes at this point, so I framed it the best I could, got as close as I could manage, and snapped this. It's pretty much a 100% crop so it's a bit soft, but I'm happy with it overall.

Tanner the Springer Spaniel

This guy was a happy little coincidence. His name is Tanner, and his owner was polite enough to let me capture a few images of their playtime at the lake's edge. This is a pretty standard snapshot, but this is the best shot I have of Tanner's face.

Tanner was chasing his tennis ball in the water and making a hell of a lot of splashes as he did. This seemed like a good time to try and shoot some high shutter speed photos. I kept two and I like them both, although I'm sure I could have done better. This was entirely new to me.

Tanner Leaping Redux

Tanner from a bit of a distance. This one needed a lot of editing since I couldn't keep the camera level enough to maintain a level horizon. The rotation took it's toll on the sharpness of the photo.

Tanner Leaping

A more tightly framed photo this time, still not overly level, but cropping the horizon out helped a bit. I'd like to think that fast-action shots are a little more forgiving when it comes to this sort of rule.

...and that was my visit to Dorothy Lake.


  1. Love the second action shot with the dog! I also really like the road one. Really nice S curve going on there.

  2. Thanks! The 'S' curve does really seem to work in a shot. One of the composition tips I picked up from various readings.