How I Got the Shot: Lone Evergreen in Brant Lake

Photograph by Mark Bowie

Exposure Data:

Exposure Unrecorded
Nikon D90, Nikkor 80-200 mm lens, set at about 200 mm, Fuji Velvia 50 Film.

Fresh snow covers a solitary evergreen tree in deciduous woods east of Brant Lake. Light, wet snows that cling to trees are ideal for picture taking. Snow quiets, softens and, most helpfully for photographers, simplifies landscapes. Here it accents the frilly branches of the bushes and trees, transforming what is in other seasons a chaotic scene into a winter wonderland. The image is nearly monochromatic: dark greens and white. The repeating vertical lines of the forest add depth to the image; the lyrical “movement” of the tree branches an enchanting elegance. They almost look like they are in motion.

I used a telephoto lens to extract the scene from its surroundings and a small aperture for good depth of field. I intentionally composed the evergreen off-center to preserve the image’s flow.

Pristine snows freeze woodland scenes as delicate moments in time. Yet the scenery is fleeting; the magic will be melted by the winter sun or carried away on the next gusty winds.

Mark Bowie is a frequent contributor to Adirondack Life magazine and a staff instructor for the Adirondack Photography Institute. He is a much sought-after public speaker, offering presentations to camera clubs, environmental groups and others. API’s 2015 workshop schedule is posted on their website: For more on Mark’s work, visit his website: