Tag Archives: fall

Framing the Obvious in Siouxland and the Joslyn Museum, Omaha, NE

14 Dec

When out shooting sometimes I don’t really know what to expect until I see an image in front of me. During an outing with my Photo Safari class through the Lifelong Learning program at Western Iowa Tech Community College I was struck by some columns in downtown Sioux City.

in downtown Sioux City, Iowa Saturday Nov. 4, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

I never really noticed City Hall behind it until that night.

And during my trip to Council Bluffs and visiting the historic General Dodge House columns again caught my attention.

Columns line the porch of the Dodge House, former residence of one Gen. Greville M. Dodge, a Civil War Veteran and railroad builder who settled in Council Bluffs, Iowa Wednesday Oct. 4, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

As did a recent to to the Joslyn Museum in Omaha, NE. The architecture there in the building itself is as much a tribute to art and the art of building as are the works found within it. It was a good day to wander through the museum and enjoy the building and what it offers in and of itself.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Columns in the Joslyn Art Museum frame other building aspects in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Columns in the Joslyn Art Museum frame other building aspects in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Columns in the Joslyn Art Museum frame other building aspects in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Enjoying the Light in Siouxland, Woodbury County

30 Nov

The other day I saw part of a gorgeous sunset from my backyard. I only saw part of it because the sky is partially obscured by neighboring homes. The sky still had some clouds, blue sky and such the beginning hint of red. I really should have been out taking photographs. But I contented myself with just watching. With cooler temperatures I need to force myself outside nearer sunset to enjoy the sights of nature and God’s work. Beautiful etchings in the sky. And a moment of  quietude as night comes on.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Sun setting behind a cloud near Sergeant Bluff, Iowa off or County Road D45 Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Lights and Shadows in Siouxland plus effective composition, Omaha, NE

26 Nov

Sometimes when I am out and photographing I know I shoot too many images. It’s just easy to do with digital. In the film days I would shoot more judiciously because I didn’t want to process more than a couple rolls of film. Those days I primarily shot B&W. I would look a scene over and judge what I thought would give me the best result. Now, I shoot more liberally and decide when I look the pics on a large display monitor.

Fall color hangs on in Elmwood Park in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Do I like this crop, the tonality, the road veering away from the scene.

Fall colors hang on in Elmwood Park in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

Or does this crop feel more intimate bringing the viewer into the image more quickly if at all. But then, I liked a third take.

Fall colors still appear in Elmwood Park in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

And pretty soon I have a dozen photos or more as I make slight variations.

But there are other times when I see and know what I like, especially shooting lights and shadows. I like the ying and yang of the images and their overall feel. And it’s nice to have choices when creating images.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

 

Afternoon sun creates a shadow in Elmwood Park in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

A tree retains its fall leaves in Elmwood Park in Omaha, NE Thursday Nov. 2, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

A Look at Autumn in Siouxland, Orange City

19 Nov

The other day brought the first snowfall to the Siouxland area along with wind gusts up to 50mph and low visibility. The dip into the low temperatures of the 20’s is something like most people I am not looking forward too. But it’s going to happen. So I am remembering a recent day out in Orange City and a walk around the downtown area and a milder temperature. Ahhhhhh, I will savor it while I can.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Enjoying Fall in Siouxland, Rural Plymouth County

1 Nov

Coming back a short trip in north Siouxland I stopped along the roadway to admire and attempt to capture a sunset. Watching it a bit I thought the sky was going to stay washed out, but then the color started bursting  into the clouds and it made a nice day even better.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A n intense sunset off Hwy 75 South in rural Plymouth County, Iowa Friday Oct. 28, 2016 in Sioux City, Iowa. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

An intense sunset off Hwy 75 South in rural Plymouth County, Iowa Friday Oct. 28, 2016 in Sioux City, Iowa. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Siouxland easing into Fall, Sioux City

10 Sep

I visited a local state park the other day in Sioux City looking for a location for a portrait shoot. On the way there I passed a field with a couple of horses grazing and noticed the light and the horses and pulled over. It struck me that the light is slowly changing, gone the intense brightness of summer and easing into that hazy fall, soft kind of light. I personally like the fall season and hope to get out more and explore Siouxland looking for the familiar and yet undiscovered venues to photograph.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Horses graze in a field near Stone State Park in Sioux City, Iowa, Thursday Sept. 8, 2016.       (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Horses graze in a field near Stone State Park in Sioux City, Iowa, Thursday Sept. 8, 2016. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Revisiting favorite places in Siouxland, Stone State Park

23 Dec

There are some places I go to numerous times out of the year, like many people. Although this particular place is not a favorite restaurant or bookstore and department store. I go to a local park, Stone State Park, located in Sioux City, Iowa, many times throughout the year. Some times I schedule class outings there, but most times I go there by myself.

I like nature. I know the areas I walk and revisit, like many others who also frequent the park. And I always tell students that each time there is something different. The season, the lighting, the foliage, and how you see it. The quiet, the sounds of nature, all combine to make a new experience and an opportunity to really see something change, and to recognize that you understand that. The toughest thing to photograph is something one sees everyday. Those sights almost become backgrounds if we let them. I went there this fall, and again in early winter and photographed the same scene. First, I liked what I saw and photographed them without the thought of comparing them. But after editing the second group of photos, I remembered the first set. I used different techniques to record my vision of what I saw each time, but it gave me pause, and the chance to reflect what I saw, how I saw it, and maybe why I chose to photograph this scene the way I did.

At times when photographing, I shoot pretty straight forward, trying to capture the scene but adding my own thought of light and shade or heavy exposure, reflecting how I like to shoot. But every now and again, I like to experiment and shoot in B&W, or use a Holga lens. Trying to capture some fleeting essence that appeals to me in that particular moment while I am witnessing the scene in front of me, which I know, will be different the next time I visit the park because I will be thinking different thoughts, maybe about current events or other life factors that have passed between my visit then and past.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

As Fall slowly fades in Siouxland, Vermillion, South Dakota

6 Nov

This year Fall is moving slowly into winter, and that is alright with me. Slowly, cool days and nights, then a warm up. There hasn’t really been a cold, hard frost yet, until recently. So the trees have been turning color sporadically. Some, not all, one or two or none. I like Fall and like watching the colors turn. So I try to get my color fix whenever I can. And sometimes it is just a single leaf, a spot of color and the changes coming.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

As Fall arrives a little color is beginning to show in Vermillion, South Dakota,  Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

As Fall arrives a little color is beginning to show in Vermillion, South Dakota, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Siouxland’s Orange Rind film festival, Orange City

10 Nov

Recently a small film festival debuted in Orange City, Iowa, the Orange Rind. SHort mini documentaries created by high school and college students as well as adults, all with varying degrees of skill but a purpose and passion to create something that told a story. Dordt College instructor Mark Volkers conducted a 3-part workshop to start individuals on the road to creating their own mini documentaries. The workshop was sponsored by arts councils of both Orange City and Sioux Center. Fourteen people participated in creating short 6-minute documentaries, although only nine films were shown at the festival. Sadly, Mr. Murphy rode shotgun on some of the participants’s endeavors and there were time constraints, software meltdowns and other spectacular and not so spectacular reasons for all of the films not being completed on time. Those participating included Sarah Simmons, Becky Uittenbogaard, Hana Spangler, Denise Krebs, Shane and Stanton Madsen, Brittany Caffey, Matt Latchaw, Vern Eekhoff, Richard Nyunt, Daniel and Miranda Liebsack and Tina Snieder.

Becky Uittenbogaard received best of show for her pastoral piece about living in the country and received a cash prize, as did honorable mention winner matt Latchaw who did a piece about Northwestern College students trying to influence the outcome of the school’s soccer games as they heckle, politely, the opposing teams. It was an interesting night with quite a wide array of films shown. One of interest was by Denise Krebbs, whose husband will be doing missionary work in Bahrain. It was a short film about his and her calling. I am looking forward to seeing a new documentary by Denise after she and her husband return from their time in the Mideast. A young man in high school tackled a tough subject about the decline in people attending a physical church in the United States compared to earlier statistics. Maybe not so surprisingly some of his found statistics showed more people attending church when some international affair affected the entire country, such as war.

Judging the festival entries were three local Midwest film makers, Jess Brauning, Joe Hubers and Todd McDonald. Anita Bomgaars of OC Basketball Productions, LLC was on hand to present the two cash awards. While none of the films would dazzle those attending Sundance, the 75 attendees seemed well entertained  and the judges remarked that the film makers appeared more sophisticated in their endeavors than each of the judges when they began their careers. That was nice of the judges to say. Hopefully, more people will participate in another year. As one of the judges commented, there are not enough people in the Midwest telling stories about flyover country, but surely, there are enough stories to tell. More images can be found here.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Winter slowly coming to Siouxland, Sioux City

8 Nov

So while fall is fading and the leaves are leaving along with warmer temperatures, winter is slowly making its way felt here in Siouxland. The other day the area of Sioux City, Iowa, was spared snow, but instead got rain. Which is nice, until the temperature hits 32 degrees or lower. But if you don’t have to travel, that’s okay as well. So this past week winter left a calling card in the way of ice crystals the morning following the rain. It is pretty, but then that gust of wind hits and reality once more takes hold.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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