The hidden valley

Farmers have planted groves of pear, plum, olive and pomegranate, along with grapes and an assortment of other greenery just below the town of Metulla – a hidden corner of beauty.

By YEHOSHUA HALEVI
December 16, 2010 18:27
1 minute read.
Yehoshua Halevi

hidden valley. (photo credit: YEHOSHUA HALEVI)

 
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Anyone who encountered me toward the end of my fall foray to the north would have seen the effects of rising three consecutive mornings well before dawn and schlepping my gear and ambition through dewy trails and prickly underbrush until darkness and exhaustion set in. After 583 km of travel by car and several more on foot and 652 shutter releases, I can reveal that I brought home five excellent landscapes.

If I were a hunter, which I sometimes imagine I am when out in the wilds with my camera, I would have settled for bagging one lion. So five is a roaring success!



Just north of Kiryat Shmona, a few seconds before the itinerant Israeli runs out of country, is a small valley below the town of Metulla, where farmers have planted groves of pear, plum, olive and pomegranate, along with grapes and an assortment of other greenery. I had noted this bucolic spot in the past as a potential shooting location in the right season.

Turning onto a rare paved road that descended into the valley and up the far side, I found a position looking across the valley and into the setting sun. I thought at the time I had missed the moment, because there were already deep shadows on the up-slope and the sun was so low I had to shade my lens with my left hand to reduce the extreme glare. Staring into the sun, I could barely see what spread out before me and I was concerned that the shadowed areas would appear as black in the final image. In retrospect, the final result as shown below is nearly perfect. The shadows miraculously fall along the outer edges of the composition and provide depth and contrast while the golden sunlight paints a swath down the center of the frame. The play of light and shadow combine wonderfully to create a beautiful, warm autumn afternoon feel.

Yehoshua Halevi is an award-winning photojournalist and event photographer. For queries on simha photography in Israel and Europe, send an e-mail to smile@goldenlightimages.com. View the entire Israel the Beautiful series at www.israelthebeautiful.blogspot.com

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