May 18 2014

Color–A Foretaste of Glory Divine

eCES3465A friend of mine from here in Henderson texted me a few days ago and told me he was at an art museum in Indianapolis viewing an Ansel Adams exhibit.  I told him that he could have just stayed home and looked at my pictures.  I indicated to him that my pictures were certainly more colorful than that Adams guy.  Needless to say I was joking.  Ansel Adams is one of my photographic heroes, but it is true that my images are more colorful than his since he primarily did black and white work.  I enjoy looking at good black and white photography but am so very thankful to live in a world filled with color.

I took time this past Friday to go do some photography with a couple of friends in the nearby Henderson Sloughs Wildlife Management Area.  What a beautiful day it was!  The sky was a glorious blue and the spring greens were putting on a show.  The fields of yellow flowers we saw were so bright you almost needed sunglasses to view them without pain.  After I posted some pictures from the trip on Facebook a number of people commented on how beautiful the colors were.  It was that kind of day.

eCES3423The last couple of nights I’ve been working on a new digital slide show to share with a group on Tuesday.  Since I recently celebrated my one year anniversary in Henderson I decided I would put together a program that highlighted the natural beauty I had captured with my camera the past twelve months here.  When I looked at the folder of images I had worked on for the presentation I was taken aback by the amazing palette of color before me.  In my journey through spring, summer, autumn and winter I must have seen almost every color imaginable.  Seeing all those colors thrilled my soul.

It also reminded me of something I had read just a week before.  The movie Heaven is for Real is playing locally and I mentioned to someone I’d like to see it.  I was told I should read the book first.  I happened to have a copy so one day I sat down and read it.  I found the whole story quite fascinating but one of the things that really stood out for me was the young boy’s physical description of heaven.  After his near death experience Colton told his father that in heaven there are lots of colors—“rainbow colors.”  Numerous times in the book attention is given to the colors Colton saw in heaven.  This intrigued me.

eDSC5410Interestingly enough, the picture the Bible paints of the New Jerusalem in the Book of Revelation is one filled with lots of beautiful colors.  We’re told the walls are made of jasper and the city of pure gold.  John adds, “The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone.” (21:19)  Among the stones identified are sapphire, emerald, topaz, chalcedony, sardonyx, carnelian, chrysolite, beryl, chrysoprase, jacinth and amethyst.  I know what some of these stones look like but for others I haven’t a clue.  I doubt that we are supposed to understand any of this literally; it is more likely that these are just glimpses of the indescribable.  I have no doubt, however, that heaven will be beautiful.  It will not surprise me at all if it is more colorful than anything we have witnessed here on earth.  In fact, I suspect the colors we so enjoy are—in the words the song—only “a foretaste of glory divine.”  If God put so many wonderful colors into our temporary home, I can only imagine what colors await us in our eternal one.  That leads me to believe that there will be no black and white photography in heaven.  Sorry, Ansel!


(I took the three pictures shown above at Henderson Sloughs WMA this past Friday.)

Nov 11 2009

In Praise of Color

GSM-rock-leaves-water-731While driving around town today I noticed that some of the trees are still holding on to their leaves.  Interestingly enough, a few trees are still green.  Soon, however, all the leaves will have turned and fallen to the ground.  When all of our deciduous trees lose their leaves I’m particularly grateful for the conifer trees we have around here.  Having some green to look at when everything else is bare is comforting to me. 

I have to admit I like color.  When I got into photography a number of years ago I began to pay more attention than ever to the color of things in nature.  I started noticing combinations of colors I liked too.  Perhaps that just comes with the territory for those who do color photography.  Still, I really do have a great appreciation for the vast variety of colors God has worked into His Creation.  When Bonita and I moved into the house we live in almost two years ago we decided we would use a variety of colors to paint the various rooms.  I obtained some color charts to look at and was amazed at how many different colors of paint there are.  This, however, does not begin to compare with the number of different colors God has available on his artistic palette. 

The plethora of colors visible in Creation is a wonder to behold!  Like you, I have my favorites.  I love the peculiar color of redbud blossoms and the delicate purples of Virginia bluebells.  The colorful feathers on an indigo bunting or a male cardinal delight my soul.    To me the multi-hued shades one encounters at sunrise and sunset are  mind boggling and inspirational.  And I never tire of seeing the combination of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet that makes up a rainbow. 

One of the reasons I do not attempt black and white photography is my great love for and appreciation of color.  I am enchanted by the hues, shades, tones and tints of color.  One of the things I’ll give thanks for this Thanksgiving is God’s awesome gift of color.   Take a look around you and I suspect you will too.


(The colorful image above was taken recently in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.)