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Monthly Masters DiscussionMonthly Masters' Discussion - JMW Turner's "Snowstorm" - Let's Talk About Water and Light

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minniev
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Re: Monthly Masters' Discussion - JMW Turner's "Snowstorm" - Let's Talk About Water and Light

Post by minniev » Sun May 06, 2018 2:32 am

Charles Haacker wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 2:15 am
Oh wow. What a picture. At a glance I could just identify the paddlebox of a sidewheeler. I can barely see her tall stack with flame at the bell. The skipper is pushing her hard. The title helps enormously to grasp what is going on: Snow Storm - Steamboat off a Harbour’s Mouth. I tend to imagine she is fighting her way inbound, trying desperately not to be piled on the breakwater and hammered to death, as I can't imagine any skipper in his right mind trying to bull his way out of a harbor in a blow like this. A brief hole has opened in the swirl of snow allowing the observer a glimpse of her struggle, waves higher than the pilothouse, one wave seems to be breaking higher than the mast, silhouetting the oily plume of coal smoke belching from the stack. She's not safe yet. This is a fight to the death between ship and sea.

I think this is very much impressionism and I love this painting. Yes I would have it on my wall! Obviously I am a frustrated sailor (well, not in a blow like this...puts me in mind of the recent loss of the El Faro).

I discovered that this painting hangs in the DeYoung Museum. I regret to say I never saw it, and Daphne and I spent countless hours in that museum over 30 years, especially after Matt was born. It's in Golden Gate Park in a section they used to close to auto traffic every Sunday for bikers and walkers. We'd pile our bikes on the back of the car and drive over. We had family memberships at the DeYoung and the Cal. Academy of Sciences. But I somehow managed never to see this glorious picture. :(
I agree Chuck, it's impressionistic before the time of impressionism. Thank you for putting its story into words any of us can follow. I quickly grasped the emotional story but the more detailed version you've shared is a wonderfully helpful guide.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by minniev » Sun May 06, 2018 2:36 am

I've no ships at sea to share, but the astounding power of water when it's at its wildest can be witnessed even far from the sea.

The thundering and dangerous power of water is a huge component of what draws me back to the dam again and again, to photograph my delicate feathered "sailors" steadfastly confront that power.
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"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by PietFrancke » Mon May 07, 2018 12:28 am

I like the fury of it, and the turmoil between air and water. Crop out the calm bird and place a skyscraper before the madness and it would be Turner Epic.

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Post by Matt Quinn » Mon May 07, 2018 2:37 am

minniev wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 2:36 am
I've no ships at sea to share, but the astounding power of water when it's at its wildest can be witnessed even far from the sea.

The thundering and dangerous power of water is a huge component of what draws me back to the dam again and again, to photograph my delicate feathered "sailors" steadfastly confront that power.
Grand, majestic, magical, Minnie. Great separation of full range of tones. Juxtaposition of bird and water just perfect. A place of great reward for your soul.

shy quiet hunter
nor sees nor fears the torrent
calm midst the fury

Matt
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"...approach the light as opposed to the subject." Stan Godwin

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minniev
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Post by minniev » Mon May 07, 2018 4:04 pm

PietFrancke wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 12:28 am
I like the fury of it, and the turmoil between air and water. Crop out the calm bird and place a skyscraper before the madness and it would be Turner Epic.
Hmmm. I don't have a lot of skyscrapers, but some ramshackle old buildings, perhaps...
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by minniev » Mon May 07, 2018 4:06 pm

Matt Quinn wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 2:37 am
minniev wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 2:36 am
I've no ships at sea to share, but the astounding power of water when it's at its wildest can be witnessed even far from the sea.

The thundering and dangerous power of water is a huge component of what draws me back to the dam again and again, to photograph my delicate feathered "sailors" steadfastly confront that power.
Grand, majestic, magical, Minnie. Great separation of full range of tones. Juxtaposition of bird and water just perfect. A place of great reward for your soul.

shy quiet hunter
nor sees nor fears the torrent
calm midst the fury

Matt
Glad you liked it. The contrast between the water and the birds is what keeps me going back.

Love the verse. You are giving Piet a run for his money on the Poet Laureate title here!
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by Duck » Mon May 07, 2018 5:53 pm

minniev wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 2:36 am
I've no ships at sea to share, but the astounding power of water when it's at its wildest can be witnessed even far from the sea.

The thundering and dangerous power of water is a huge component of what draws me back to the dam again and again, to photograph my delicate feathered "sailors" steadfastly confront that power.
A truly amazing image. One almost expects the bird to be swept away at any minute. Very "impending doom" type of photo.
I definitely do not have anything close to this level of intensity to add to this thread.
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minniev
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Post by minniev » Mon May 07, 2018 8:26 pm

Duck wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 5:53 pm
minniev wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 2:36 am
I've no ships at sea to share, but the astounding power of water when it's at its wildest can be witnessed even far from the sea.

The thundering and dangerous power of water is a huge component of what draws me back to the dam again and again, to photograph my delicate feathered "sailors" steadfastly confront that power.
A truly amazing image. One almost expects the bird to be swept away at any minute. Very "impending doom" type of photo.
I definitely do not have anything close to this level of intensity to add to this thread.
Thanks Duck. The birds always look so vulnerable with that roaring water so close by. They are hardly more than sticks and feathers anyway.

You could always add that skyscraper Piet was talking about to this one! You'd do a better job than I would, that's for sure.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by Charles Haacker » Wed May 09, 2018 3:34 pm

The thundering and dangerous power of water...
What I love about that picture is that I can hear it. :thumbup:
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Post by minniev » Wed May 09, 2018 4:29 pm

Charles Haacker wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 3:34 pm
The thundering and dangerous power of water...
What I love about that picture is that I can hear it. :thumbup:
That's a wonderful thing to hear, that it can convey a sense of the sound. Thank you!
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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