This is the first part of a two-part post about Atlantic White Cedar Swamps
There is nothing more strangely beautiful in the New Jersey Pine Barrens than the Atlantic White Cedar swamps. These trees grow in dense swamps by the sides of waterways and play a vital role in filtering water and protecting the riverbanks from erosion. They are also the reason the waterways in the Pine Barrens are the same brown color as tea. Until recently, Cedar Trees were over-harvested for their wood so there are only a few reclaimed cedar swamps and fewer old growth trees.
Getting into these swamps is not easy. They are thick, wet, muddy and usually surrounded by thickets of dense foliage that can only be described as nature’s barbed wire.
Below is a rare stand of old growth cedars near the Oswego River
Young Cedar trees grow in very thick swamps that look like enchanted forests. The trees can be full of interesting texture and color.
The dense forest canopy of an Atlantic White Cedar swamp can block almost all sunlight.
How I Did It – Composing photographs in a Atlantic White Cedar swamp is a challenge because swamps are messy and cluttered with deadfalls. The cedar trees are also unruly with branches growing in the strangest ways. Have patience, persistence and use light and color as compositional elements in trying to find a rhythm in the repetition of these unusual trees.
Want to be more creative with your camera? I can help so feel free to contact me.