People often ask me which is my favorite image. I usually answer that it's like your kids -- you love them all uniquely and equally, no matter how many you have. Well, I have to admit that I do prefer some images over others, and this particular one is among my favorites, not only because of its depth, mood and balance but for what it conjures up of times past.
On many occasions, I've hiked the trail from Old Man's Cave to Cedar Falls in Hocking County, Ohio. Always, my imagination is captured by the foggy hollow the trail passes along the way, its peaceful stillness broken only by the sound of water dripping into small puddles in the rock. Once, in the dead of winter, with the stream frozen solid, I arrived at this spot, stopped to listen, then crossed over into the hollow. Despite the cold, water continued to seep slowly out of the rock, forming a gleaming stalagmite of ice below.
Through art, we often strive to capture and communicate our experiences to others. Yet, as in this case, "experience" may go far beyond the present moment and encompass many non-visual aspects such as sound, smell, temperature, one's emotional state, and one's memory. How do you create an image that elicits in the viewer something resembling your own experience, within the limitations of the available tools and the medium within which you are working? How do you create an image that captures the viewer's attention and imagination and seduces them into spending time exploring and feeling it? These are the challenges and, based on what others have said, this image succeeds quite well in doing that. So this image is personally satisfying not only in how I feel it captures my own experiences with the place, but in how, through this image, I have connected in a meaningful way with others. This is is one of the main reasons I do photography, together with my desire to understand and express my relationship with the Web of Life.