Ansel and the Snowflake

It was 8 PM and I’d been trying to photograph snowflakes all day. But try as I might, the wind was howling and I could only “harvest” bits and pieces blown off the roof. Feeling a little discouraged—realizing that this would be the last chance to photograph snowflakes until next winter—I retreated inside.

Three hours later, a thought tap-danced across my concentration: “Go outside and try again.” So I pulled a pair of insulated pants and a parka over my pajamas, donned a hat and gloves, and headed into the night. This snowflake was the first one to land on my black sampling board and “sparkle” in the light of my headlamp. I picked it up with a paintbrush (like scooping up a pancake with a spatula), and set it on the microscope slide. Holding my breath so I wouldn’t melt the snow crystal, I quickly adjusted the camera settings. As it came into focus, I nearly cried…

snowflake, snow crystal, real snowflake, photo, Ansel Adams, snow, winter

Thanks for stopping by. Be inspired. Be happy.

Marion Owen, Kodiak, Alaska, photographer

This entry was posted in Essays and inspirations, Photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

28 Responses to Ansel and the Snowflake

  1. Claire Armistead says:

    Beautiful, Marion!! Kudos to you for your creativity, skill, perseverance, and more … it’s beastly cold out there!

  2. Velda says:

    That is flat out amazing! Thank you so much for sharing it!

  3. Diana Thompson says:

    such a gift…the snowflake photo and you Marion!!

  4. Carolyn Clark says:

    Very beautiful! You listened to inspiration. Thank you. 🙂

  5. Martin Owen says:

    Beautiful image Dear. Don’t know what time you came to bed, but I do recall how cold your hands were!

  6. Kathy Copeland says:

    Aaaahhhh ohhhhhh ouuuu Sooooo gorgeous! Captured forever!! See you soon! X K

    Kathy Copeland Executive Director Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra

  7. Candice Falatko says:

    So Beautiful. Thank you.

  8. Helen Williams says:

    Thank you so much!- A beautiful picture-

  9. luanne43 says:

    Love the narratives you always post with your photos! Tis a beautiful snowflake! Yes, a snowflakes and northern lights photo montage would be fabulous! Another great idea by you!!

  10. H. Allen says:


  11. daryleone says:

    That voice you heard may have been from the ghost of a fella who shot a few flakes in Jericho, VT some years ago …

  12. Sharon says:

    What a fabulous photo/work of art! And a wonderful lesson on trying just one more time!

  13. Linda says:

    Marion, you ABSOLUTELY AMAZE me capturing these beautiful snowflakes. Until you did this last year I had NO IDEA that they looked like this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Thank you so very much for what you do!

  14. Melissa says:

    I agree with all, wow!! How long do you have before the snowflake starts to melt? Tell Martin I think the cold hands were worth the end result ;-). I am sooo standing by for next post! M.

  15. tom DeLopez says:

    Happy New Year, Marion and Marty. Have a Blessed year.
    Tom and Sandy DeLopez

  16. Irene jays says:

    OMG ‘s, thank-you for sharing !

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