Thursday, March 1, 2012

From Russia with love...

Игорь Шпиленок

Блог фотографа-натуралиста

These photos I wanted to share today are from live journal of Ivor Shpilenok:

"I wish to convey the beauty of wild nature in Russia's protected areas to people around the world and evoke in them the desire to conserve those areas."

- Igor Shpilenok
Shpilenok's website may be viewed here. NB: Shpilenok is a professional Russian photographer, so do take care to credit his name and website if you choose to copy an image. 

You may be wondering why I have posted these images today. In September last year I flew to London on Korean Air. On the trip over I was very restless and didn't feel much like sitting or sleeping so I spent time at the back of the plane in a cosy nook where I could gaze out the window.
We flew from Seoul where I'd stayed overnight and in no time we were crossing over China and into Russia.
It was tantalising to see the landscape stretching out seemingly forever. Cloud cover was light and patchy so visibility was good. Its hard to describe how absorbing the experience was... the intense desire to know what was going on down there!
I imagine you may have known this feeling from flying as well. The planet seemed so mysterious that day... and I've since found myself taking more notice of stories from that part of the world. 

So close yet so far!

If you take time to visit the site: livejournal you may well be stunned by the wonderful photos waiting for you to view. These photos are in a small way an answer to the yearning I've had ... I hope you enjoy them, although I'm sorry they aren't in order!                                                                                                                                                                                                     
2nd September 2011
1st March, 2011


30th July, 2011


12th August 2011

September 14th, 2011

September 9th, 2011

September 13th, 2011


May 27th, 2011

May 17th, 2011

15th March, 2011

February 11th, 2011

December 9th, 2010

About this photo from the livejournal:

От моей избушки напрямик до Тихого океана километров пять. Вроде рядом - я постоянно слышу гул океана, чувствую его запах, даже во время сильных штормов вижу верхушки пенных волн. Но между кордоном и океаном раскинулась приморская топкая тундра плюс лиман, общий для двух крупнейших рек заповедника Кроноцкой и Богачевки. Поэтому остается один путь - водный. В сентябре, когда я только прибыл сюда, из океана через лиман заходили в реки на нерест стада лососевых рыб, поэтому мне приходилось бывать там почти ежедневно, контролировать обстановку в лимане и трехмильной морской акватории заповедника. Плаваю я к океану я и сейчас, но уже значительно реже, поскольку рыба уже поднялась вверх по рекам, а тревожить тысячи зимующих в лимане уток и сотни лебедей без нужды не хочется. 
via google translation:

From my cabin straight out to the Pacific Ocean about five kilometersLike a number - I hear the ocean roarfeel the smell, even during heavy storms can see the tops of the waves of foamBut between the cordon and the oceanstretched coastal tundra of the furnaces, plus the estuary, the total for the twolargest rivers in the reserve and Kronotsky BogachevkiTherefore, it remainsone way - water. In September, when I first arrived hereacross the estuaryfrom the ocean came into the river for spawning salmon stock, so I had to go there almost daily, to monitor the situation in the three-mile estuary and marine areas of the reserve. I swim to the ocean I am now, but much less frequently, because the fish had already climbed up the rivers and disturb thousands ofwintering ducks in the estuary, and hundreds of swans without need not want.
Go see the live journal for more!

Bye for now,


Caterina Giglio said...

amazing and beautiful... xox

Valerianna said...

Stunning! Oh, how I love the patterns, textures and colors of the natural world. The fox is sweet, too...!

Valerianna said...

I've just spent quite a while scrolling back through Igor's photos... stunning, truly. Seems like he sees that fox a lot! The photos of the wolverines were quite amazing, goodness, and every other creature or landscape, too. Thanks!!

Sophie Munns said...

lovely to hear from you Cat!
Glad you liked!

Valerianna... so delighted you had the chance to go see his livejournal. And it does bring home how engrossed he is in it all... thefox yes! I found myself feeling far more curious than is usual for me about the animals in those habitats. Seems to be something in the way he shoots his images that certainly speaks to me. His regard for them is clear...
there's magic in some of those shots!

Mlle Paradis said...

these are gorgeous sophie! thx so much. i realized you came back via korea but never thought that you'd get to have this "bonus" experience! wow.

i flew up from l.a. to minneapolis last year and the topography was just stunning! just nothing like i ever had imagined as i thought i was just flying over america's boring old prairie.

thanks for this reminder...i'm sure you've seen the yann artus bertrand books - but in this vein......

Sophie Munns said...

How mind-blowing it is Mlle P to see the earth from the air on a good visibility day. Great I'm sure to see the prairies in a new and different way.

It was the flight to London that coincided with all that sunlight. I arrived at London on 6pm having left Korea at 2pm ... although it was a 12 hour flight. We were flying with the sun all day.

Despite being thousands of feet above land...the clarity was such that one could see every change in terrain... thus the Russian photographer's images clue me in to what some parts may have looked like from closer range.

I remember stark mountain ranges ... then snow-tipped ones and the white covered ranges. Lakes reflecting light dotted everywhere. Rivers wound around ranges causing me to wonder just where we were. Coastlines were a rare sight.

in my semi-dazed state I was looking all the time for variations in what was observable... something new on the ground. My brain was been asked to recall anything that would answer my nonstop questions! I never found any English speaker who was able to fill me in! So it remained a mystery....

nathalie et cetera said...

such beautiful images! love the bear and the fox. they look innocent and curious, like kids. thank you for sharing

Sophie Munns said...

Yes... i see what you mean Nathalie...
remarkable how peaceful these images appear.. yet 'm not sure where exactly these places are and what in fact they would be like. As a photographer you no doubt appreciated these pics..
enjoy your weekend wont you!