Cemeteries in the Rain

Today’s Post by Mildred Alpern

Cemeteries are sober places and on rainy days, the raindrops add a sense of sorrow. They are quiet places separated from the daily bustle and activity of life. There is placid beauty In this setting where tablets and gravestones in serried rows commemorate the dead. We may feel immortal, but cemeteries remind us of our mortality and our present gift of life.

A recent visit to a cemetery In Queens, NY, gave me the chance to test out the recently acquired and hefty ultra wide Olympus M.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro lens. With each new lens there is experiment and learning, discovering whether it fits into your shooting style or expands your present one. I was hoping the cemetery would have the drama I was looking for, and it did. Sopping rain had brought down vivid maple leaves on trimmed bushes, and those still on the branches hung in wilting and twisting patterns, in defiant struggles. Yet the rain was no deterrent since both my camera and lens were entirely weather sealed.

This lens has a manual focus clutch mechanism which I prefer to use rather than the auto focus, and I focused on the foreground leaves and rain drops. I was pleased with the rich color of the leaves and their leathery look. More importantly I liked the emotive mood of autumn’s irreverent wind and rain scattering scraggly leaves over manicured lawns and shrubs . So much for rational order.

Both images were shot with the Olympus E-M5 Mark II and the Olympus M.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro lens; the leathery leaf image at 7.0mm at an exposure of 1/30 sec at f/6.3, ISO 1000; the leaves on the bushes at 14mm at an exposure of 1/30 sec at f/4.5, ISO 500.


Mildred’s book Haiku and Images is available on Amazon and is filled wit h beautifully reproduced color photographs along with original haiku underneath, embellishing the image and deepening its meaning. Pick up a copy to give as gift for yourself or a friend.