The Season of the Talking Trees


“Trees are the earth’s endless effort to speak to the listening heaven.”
-Rabindranath Tagore

Another interesting feature of living in places with marked seasonal changes is definitively the arrival of winter, and with it what I like to call the “talking trees”. People would say that snow is probably the most fundamental characteristic of winter –at least in the Northern hemisphere- and yes I agree snow is special and indeed very pretty when you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home, but for me the most fascinating thing about winter is observing the naked trees after they have lost most or all their leafs.

There is an intriguing thing about watching those bare trunks and branches whose twists and contortions seem to be trying to say something to us. It is like their soul is open and available for a short period of time, and it is up to us to interpret their message.

I like to try to interpret what trees are trying to tell me through photography, I also like to use them to frame something else, but many times the tree ends up being my main character, relegating whatever I was trying to frame to a very far second place.

Here are some examples of my talking trees.

A tree stealing the scene in front of one of the University of Pennsylavania campus building.
There is something mysterious about naked trees and graveyards. This looks to me like a tree extending its branch/arm trying to touch one of the graves at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia
What is this tree trying to reach? Annapolis, Maryland
Two trees conversing? Annapolis, Maryland
This is a case where the composition was meant to highlight the bridge but clearly the tree and its bare branches steal the scene
An example of perfect framing. The tree surrounds the bell tower of a Presbiterian Church in Center City, Philadelphia
Extending its branches in all directions. U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
A talking tree and its reflection on a Philadelphia corporate building, Philadelphia’s Business District.
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