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Author Topic: Losing Louisiana Marsh  (Read 613 times)

RMW

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Losing Louisiana Marsh
« on: July 21, 2020, 04:52:52 pm »

Hello All.

This post may be something different then most on LuLa. (For one thing it's sad.)

I'd like to ask you for a little help to know if these fotos are satisfactory and an effective sequence in telling this story.

I've been going out to this area in the Southern Marsh in Louisiana for five years to record the condition and loss of this ecosystem. It's an acre of lost marsh every hour. Now I think (I hope) I have a comprehensible photographic record in these 7 images that shows the actual process of healthy to dying to dead.

But I wonder if in fact it really does?  Does the sequence show enough or does it show too much? Are the titles clear and not too short or too long?

Does this sequence elicit emotion ? As photographs, are the individual images sufficiently rewarding?

Thank you very much for looking.

Any and all input is greatly, greatly appreciated.

Richard
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francois

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2020, 07:13:11 am »

I would say that the heavy sky and the lack of vibrant colors cast a sad mood. The presence of the pumping station doesn't bode well for the nature… and the rest of the images just reinforce the feeling.
The feelings can be different depending on the relationship one has with nature and also the education so it's really hard to say whether these shots convey your thoughts (or your goals).
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Francois

Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2020, 11:08:32 am »

Quite effective, and yes, very sad.
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-Eric Myrvaagnes (visit my website: http://myrvaagnes.com)

Frans Waterlander

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2020, 12:08:57 pm »

There is absolutely nothing in the photos or your editorial that explains anything. What has been happening over time, why, what is the cause or causes? I could go out at any marsh or other landscape feature and come up with a similar series of photos and claim it's going to hell.
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Mark Nadler

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2020, 02:34:51 pm »

I have to agree with Frans.  For me, the images are separated by too much time.  Also, I would have liked to see images of exactly the same frame over time.  Taking pictures of different parts of the marsh weakens your story. 

Mark
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RMW

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2020, 05:43:26 pm »

Thank you Francois, Eric, Frans, and Mark. I appreciate all that you've said.

Here is some context to these fotos that I should have provided.

There has been substantial loss in the La. wetlands. Since the 1950s an area bigger then the state of Rhode Island is gone. At present the loss is app. one acre every hour.
The two main causes of the ruinous blow to this place and these people are an enormous engineering blunder in the early 20th century and the invasion of the O&G industry in the mid 20th century.

1. To control spring flooding such as the calamitous flood of 1927, the federal government dug and heaped up thousands of acres of irreplaceable blue ribbon farmland to construct massive earthen barriers along south going American rivers. Effectively, it walled in free flowing rivers, turning them into man managed channels, the Mississippi River being the grandest example.   

Spring floods were stopped, but at the cost of lands domestic and wild –  all irreplaceable  --for it's the rich life-creating-mud in those brown flood waters that makes, enriches and renews this ecosystem. The annual occasion of spring floods, a process dynamic and complex, has been replaced by a simplistically grand engineering feat that has not and cannot enrich life, but only sacrifice it.

2. During the 1950s the petroleum industry began exploiting oil and gas deposits from under this southern marsh. To get to well sites it dug canals into the soft mud flanks of  marsh areas and many of the marsh island's eastern and western sides to bore and set oil well heads, some at the very edge of resident’s gardens, orchards, and backyards. None were dug with the resident’s consultation or consent. In a few short years these canals and the hundreds they linked to, brought in seawater from the Gulf of Mexico, flooding the ecosystem, salting the marsh soil and burning the marsh grasses that were not tolerant of the high salinity. Vast areas of marsh turned brown, died, and sunk. And they continue to.

It's those vast marsh areas that protect people from hurricane storm surges and are the nurseries for all the great local seafoods.

About making a record of just one spot: I don't know how I could've done that. The marsh is a highly dynamic ecosystem. A healthy patch of it can be gone over night without leaving a trace. A sequence showing healthy to dying to gone is not easily done. I wish it were possible to do a time lapse sequence but it would require an almost other worldly amount of luck.

Hoping these words makes sense, thank you all again.

Richard
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Mark Nadler

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2020, 12:16:44 am »

Hi, RMW.  As every advertiser knows before and after pictures sell product.  If it couldn't be done then so be it.

mark
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Frans Waterlander

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2020, 12:00:48 pm »

Thanks Richard. That puts your pictures in perspective and a sad perspective it is.
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RMW

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Re: Losing Louisiana Marsh
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2020, 11:44:35 am »

Thanks Mark.

Thanks Frans. I'm glad the text cleared it up. I completely agree how sad it is.

Richard
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