Door to Autumn

Sadness and Serenity

Autumn is the favorite season of the year for many people.  Autumn is like a good Celtic tune, combining deep sadness with profound joy. 

Autumn reminds me of growing up in rural Upstate New York, and our years living in the woods of central Pennsylvania. 

I have been working on composited photos with an autumn theme.  I try to evoke feelings of the season with colors and forms.  Rich oranges, reds, and yellows, layered with wood grains and textures. 

The Door to Autumn (above) is my invitation to enter the gallery.  The door naturally opens from left to right.  We look thru the door to the featured image, a small pond below Ophir Peak in Colorado, reflecting the brilliant aspen leaves in peak autumn colors.   The image is layered with wood grain to give a dreamy effect.  Autumn is like a dream between summer and winter. 



Seasons of Life


Summer represents our working mid life, with job, family, and busy schedules.  Autumn corresponds to retirement in my seasons of life, a time of reflection and savoring what time is left to enjoy.  A glorious sunset.   Winter is age, infirmity, death and disease.   

The barrel represents storing the fruits of the summer season for the winter.  The wood easily takes the red and orange colors of the maple leaves. 

I found this barrel in an old barn at Champoeg State Park, reminiscent of pioneer times. 


Barrel with Maple Leaves

Maple Leaves on an Old Barn

Wood Grain and Autumn Leaves

I am fascinated how the colors of autumn, yellow, orange, and red, so easily blend with the textures of wood grain.  The wood planks of the barn (above) show the diagonal saw marks from when they were cut at the saw mill many years ago.  This is the old barn at Champoeg, near the visitors center.  I took the photo of the maple leaves last autumn, and folded it in half with Photoshop.  I like the symmetry of the maples with the doors of the barn. 

The archetypes of farms, barns, and old wooden buildings also blend easily with the autumn themes.  The dryness of the old wood, the loneliness of the abandoned buildings, the sense of times past never to return. 

Colorado Corral

Colorado Corral

This is a horse barn and corral in Southwest Colorado in the Four Corners area.  I layered the photo with both tree bark and wood grain textures.  I have combined the elements of the dryness of the wood, the cool, crisp Colorado air,  the bright Autumn colors, and the old farm buildings. 


Images of Autumns Past



Scarab Beetle


I wasn't looking for this symbol, but it found me.  A Scarab beetle is a symbol of ancient Egypt, meaning regeneration, or new life from decay.  The original image only included half of a tree stump due to the way the tree had been cut down.  I duplicated the image and merged the halves in Photoshop, and was surprised to see the image of a Scarab.  The round body shell, legs, and antennae. 

I have made several series of images using the scarab motif, here with maple leaves.  The intense colors here almost look burned.  

Native Americans held nature spirits and symbols to be sacred, such as totem poles and katchinas.  CG Jung and Joseph Campbell spent their lives studying  the occurrences and meaning of these spirit symbols as archetypes of the collective unconscious.  I am fascinated when I find these figures appearing unexpectedly in my images. 


Scarab Beetle

Ready for Winter

Ready for Winter

When we lived in the woods in Pennsylvania, my hobby was cutting firewood to burn in our cast iron wood stove.  People used to depend on their wood piles to keep their homes warm thru the winter.  My grandparents heated their farmhouse with a wood burning furnace until about 1970.  My grandfather had several years worth of wood piles seasoning outside. 

In this image I have layered more wood grain over the wood pile, and added some yellow color and light. 

Golden Tamaracks of Eastern Oregon

We probably won't visit Colorado this year, due to the Covid pandemic.  But there will be day trips to take autumn photos. There will be Elk Camp in Eastern Oregon, an annual pilgrimage.

I plan to add more images to this gallery thru the autumn and winter, so check back for new photos. 

I am working on a gallery and blog post about Nature Spirits and Symbols, a complex and personal work. 

  • Molly Triplett

    on September 5, 2020

    Need to order two 8x10s or can u share the file so I can print aspen grove and door to autumn for my studio???? Loving all of these layered images u have hit an artistic stride that I am waiting to see in a show at some point xooz

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