Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The sound of music at Blue Cloud Abbey

Last week I drove to Blue Cloud Abbey, near Marvin, South Dakota, for a private retreat. I knew ahead of time that the South Dakota Chapter of the American Guild of Organists would be holding a retreat for musicians. What I did not know was the inspiration and delight I would experience by attending music workshops, a talent show, rehearsals and the performance of Music of Creation, a festival of word and sacred music.

These events provided me with a wonderful venue for learning to use my new Leica. Most of the time the weather was "rotten" so my Canon DSLR and telephoto lens stayed in the camera bag. There were few birds in sight and, with way below zero temps and high winds, I was not eager to leave the Abbey. Nevertheless, I was busy filling up memory cards with images of musicians performing their art. Over the next several days I will post some of my photos. 

For those interested in such details, most of the photos were taken with the Leica M9 and 50mm f/2 Summicron wide open -- ISOs, except for the few outdoor shots, ranged from 400 to 1000. The wide angle shots were made with a Leica X1.

Below is a group photo of the participating, talented musicians.

Friday morning sunrise at the Abbey

A few hours later clouds overtook one of my favorite spots near the Abbey.

more to follow