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  • Writer's picturePaul Cotter

Unexpected Beauty



Sometimes good things present themselves in unexpected ways.


One morning last fall, my wife and I got up before sunrise and drove to DuPont State Recreational Forest in the western part of North Carolina. This 12,500-acre nature preserve is where The Last of the Mohicans was filmed, and I was looking to photograph some of its six major waterfalls.


Unfortunately, the lighting was harsh that day – an unflattering mix of deep shadows and bright sunlight filtering through the trees onto the falls – making it hard to get the beautiful wide shot I had in mind.


But then I found a most welcome surprise.


As we hiked the trail leading between falls, we came across a small lake surrounded by trees in their full fall splendor. The dappled reflections in the lake were an impressionistic wonder, changing every second with the slightest breeze. I marveled at the fragmented colors dancing on the water’s surface. This is not at all what I was planning to shoot that day – it was, in a way, even better because it was totally unexpected. And there was not a single other photographer there to capture it.


I shot a large number of images at this magical spot. And I remembered once again the lesson that photography has tried its best to teach my impatient soul: What presents itself in life can be much, much better than what we had planned for ourselves.

14 commentaires


scribbleface2
22 avr. 2023

Wow! Absolutely stunning Paul 🤩

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Paul Cotter
Paul Cotter
22 avr. 2023
En réponse à

Thanks so much! I'm glad you like this image.

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simonsendiane
18 avr. 2023

Stunning!!!!

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Paul Cotter
Paul Cotter
18 avr. 2023
En réponse à

Thank you, Diane. Very much appreciated!

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Membre inconnu
16 avr. 2023

A beautiful image Paul!

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Paul Cotter
Paul Cotter
17 avr. 2023
En réponse à

Thank you, Tom. I'm glad you found your way to my new blog. It's good to stay connected.

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Andrew Ilachinski
Andrew Ilachinski
16 avr. 2023

"This is not at all what I was planning to shoot that day" - oh, how many times have I and countless other photographers learned this precious lesson (and then - at least in my case - blissfully/ignorantly forgotten all about it the next time I head out somewhere for a "planned" photo safari!) Thanks for the wonderful reminder of the joys of just letting go and allowing ourselves to see the beauty that is literally - palpably - all around us 😊

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Paul Cotter
Paul Cotter
17 avr. 2023
En réponse à

You bring up a great point, Andy: it's a lesson that we keep forgetting and need to keep re-learning all the time. Our own plans and desires are so strong, they keep getting in the way of the possibilities. Remarkable things happen, as you've experienced, when we're able to let go.

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dawnastromsoe
12 avr. 2023

I love the brilliant intense rich colors reflected in the clear water. What a delight discovery!

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Paul Cotter
Paul Cotter
12 avr. 2023
En réponse à

I'm glad you found the view as enchanting as I did. Thank you, Dawna.

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