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The end of its life

The end of its life
Photo Information
Copyright: Niek Bouwen (SunToucher) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2385 W: 237 N: 3033] (11162)
Genre: Plants
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-10-06
Categories: Trees
Camera: Canon EOS 350D, Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 EX DG Macro, Tiffen 82mm UV
Exposure: f/8, 1/100 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Your favorites, Sallandse Heuvelrug, Abstract Nature [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-10-23 10:19
Viewed: 5286
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 32
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I found this piece of death Silver Birch lying on this bed of heather near the Sprengenberg. It looks like it just recently fell to the floor and is undergoing its first steps of decaying.

It is ofcouse sad to see this tree slowly vanish, but it is also a very important part in the ecosystem of a forest. This proces is called Biogeochemical cycle. A biogeochemical cycle is a circuit or pathway by which a chemical element or molecule moves through both biotic ("bio-") and abiotic ("geo-") compartments of an ecosystem. In effect, the element is recycled, although in some such cycles there may be places (called "sinks") where the element is accumulated or held for a long period of time.

elefantino, horia, gracious, Alex99, eqshannon, Natch, pablominto, PaulH, bobair, hester, mbasil, Silke, uleko has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To Heaven: SorrySunToucher 2 10-31 08:56
To bobcat08: LoepzuiverSunToucher 2 10-29 13:46
To PaulH: B&WSunToucher 3 10-29 11:15
To Silke: HonoredSunToucher 2 10-28 06:34
To Evelynn: You show him! ;)horia 2 10-28 06:13
To horia: CompetitionSunToucher 1 10-28 06:07
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Critiques [Translate]

I love this shot!
Relly weel composed and witha good mix of autumnal colors.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2007-10-23 10:32]
  • [+]

Aha...an abstract... :) ...do i see a competition ahead? :))

I'm just kidding, my friend. But this is indeed a very interesting photo and one that recently i've come to appreciate.
The contrast here between the silver-white bark and the dark green and brown is wonderful and attracts the viewer's eye. The "game" of textures here is also an important part of the composition - with those lovely small straight lines on the bright bark and the lovely shapes of the small heather leaves.
The diagonal displacement of the fallen bark in the frame is also superb.
I don't think that this is the kind of photo is which words like "spot-on exposure" and "great sharpness" give a good description (although they are as i said) so i'm not even going to start a tech-talk.
I'm just going to say that i like it and that i'm going to pop-up an abstract now-and-then and hope you'll do the same :) (just for the fun of it...because they sure don't get a lot of attention and critique, i think we both know that)

Take care and i honestly thank you for sharing it!

Hello Niek,
You show us well the cycle of nature in the ecosystem of forest! A lot of us not aware of!
good clarity and details in this shot!
well composed and thanks for the useful notes!

Hallo Niek,

Zie je wel. Eenvoud geeft de mooiste plaatjes. Is wel klasse wat er zo voor ons op het scherm getoverd wordt. Laten we het eens van naderbij bekijken. Ten eerste de compositie. Prachtig zoals die zilverberk tussen de heide ligt te vergaan. De details zijn ook heel sterk vertegenwoordigd. Kijk maar naar de fijne details van de heide. En niet te vergeten de opengebarsten boomschors. Die kleurverschillen tussen dat zilverwitte en dat warmbruine van die stam, prachtig. Ik wil niet zeggen dat de hele foto loepzuiver is, maar het scheelt weinig. Zo een heel verhaal en dat heeft dit kunststuk verdient. Prettige avond en tot TFS BOB

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2007-10-23 11:45]

Hi Niek.
Terrific shot, full of content subject and very nice note. Quality of the shot is great. I like blameless composition, amazing colours, lighting, exposure and contrast. Sharpness and details are perfect too. Bravo and kind regards.

Hi Niek!

Impressive how you induced the sense of death in this picture. It touches me particularly strong because I just have lost an uncle and we said good bye to him today. The composition with the diagonal is perfect, and if I first didn't like the harsh contrast very much, I now believe it underlines the sense of the picture. But it's true that I first had to find my way to the picture, maybe because my mind was mainly engaged by the breeze of death...

Kind regards


There is no tree other than some willow perhaps, which holds much true lore and history as well as some mythical power. The fine birch tree gave transport to many an ancient American Native. The uses of this tree are too numerous to mention, however this picture of it does it justice in it's majesty! Fine image Sir Niek!

Hello Niek,
Good details have been captured and presented in this simple but effective composition!
The contrast between the decomposing tree and the greenery is striking and also showing the relations in nature...
Educational and mind provoking!

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2007-10-24 2:38]
  • [+]

Hi Niek, a lovely way to illustrate the cycle of life that continues around us all the time. I like the composition in the way that it is so well balanced. Vegetaion in both top right and bottom left helps to frame the strong diagonal of the main Birch Trunk.
I wonder if this would work in B & W?

Hoi Niek,

Prachtige foto met een mooi stukje onderwijs.

I like the diagonal placement of your decaying tree, and the wonderful contrasts of color and values. I see that Horia has initiated a challenge. Actually I have been trying to find such abstract compositions lately. We went on a hike yesterday, along a beautiful rushing river in the rainforest. I took a bunch of photos and kept exactly "0" !! I try to keep my eyes open to smaller abstract compositions.... but so far "no luck" : ( Maybe this will spur me on to greater success. I get little encouragement on the home front. Jerry says, "Give it up! It's impossible in the rainforest!" Of course pride now makes me want to do it even more!! I'LL SHOW HIM!!!! : ) ...we call that "false bravado" : ) !!

Evelynn : )

Hi Niek,
this is a thoughtful upload you have in this photo and note.A simple and straight forward depiction of reality as it applies to the death of this tree,and really all else as well.The photo is good and the detail in it illustrates your point well.Tfs. Bob

  • Great 
  • hester Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1515 W: 18 N: 3165] (11638)
  • [2007-10-25 12:00]

Hi Niek

An unusual shot but I have to say I like it a lot. I love the way you have framed the shot. The exposure is excellent and I love the textures depicted in the shot



  • Great 
  • mbasil Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 335 W: 148 N: 745] (3320)
  • [2007-10-25 12:43]

Wow, that's pretty abstract, Niek. I was thinking I was looking at a river from straight above for a minute or two, till I read the note. But I do like it a lot, even more when I know it's a birch. Great diagonal composition and details.

  • Great 
  • Silke Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 729 W: 98 N: 1707] (5458)
  • [2007-10-27 12:16]
  • [+]

This is really powerful, Niek!
Superb composition, colours and details -- stunning!
this is art card and calendar material!

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-10-30 12:59]

Hello Niek,
What a wonderful close-up of this old log amongst the Heather. Excellent sharp details and lovely colours of that beautiful bark.
A very fine composition which I like!
TFS and regards, Ulla

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