Mid-April in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is about the flowering of the shrubs and small trees, especially the dogwoods (Cornus florida) and redbuds (Cercis canadensis). While the dogwoods bloom throughout the forest understory below 4000′, redbuds seem to prefer the disturbed edges of roads and treelines. Across from the Oconafuftee Visitor Center the roadside is awash with the fuchsia of this beautiful tree among the delicate green of spicebush and sprouting poplars. It was Bonnie’s birthday celebration in living color.

A focal length of 135mm, short telephotoland, gave me the angle-of-view I wanted to isolate a relatively small section of cove hardwood forest. By using an apreture of f/11 and focusing on the front of the foreground trees, I was able to create an area of sharpness with the depth-of-field available, but the background forest began to go a bit soft deeper in. An ISO of 100 and a shutter speed of 1/8th second gave me an overall slightly lighter-than-medium exosure.

Pointillism is just that sort impressionistic detail that has a softness about it. It really is a technique aimed at enhancing the brilliance of color, which is something a Smokies spring understands very well.