Photographer of the Week: Philip Hyde

One of my favorite things to capture on film is nature, so naturally I wanted to look at nature photographers. After doing a quick Google search, I stumbled upon the work of Philip Hyde. Hyde is primarily a landscape photographer. However, he does occasionally photograph other subjects. So far, some of my favorite photos of his have been images of mountains and forests behind a body of water. These images remind me of things I saw in storybooks as a child – like they came straight out of a fairytale.

Color Pigment Print

Color Pigment Print

This photo by Hyde almost looks too perfect to be real. It looks similar to an oil painting in the smoothness of the lines throughout the image. This image doesn’t seem like a photograph of a real place. It looks like something from an artist’s imagination. This is something I could see Pocahontas walking up to as she explores the forest.

I find the contrast between the foreground and background very interesting. The background seems very warm and inviting while the foreground seems icy and cold. The warm yellows and reds in the background make the scene appear very peaceful and calming. It looks like something you would see on a walk in the woods on a crisp Autumn morning. The foreground, on the other hand, is very harsh. The icy blue-white tones make the foreground look very frigid and dangerous. I think these tones also symbolize the power of water. The harshness of the tones reminds me if how strong and powerful glaciers, tsunamis, waterfalls, and other aquatic phenomenons can be.


This photo of Hyde’s also reminds me of a fairytale scene. The mountains are majestic and the greenery gives the scene a very mystical feeling. I can almost see Cinderella and Prince Charming riding off to their castle through this meadow as Rapunzel picks flowers to make flower crowns. The entire scene has a very ethereal and mystical quality to it that makes it difficult to believe that this exists somewhere in our world. I think the biggest contributor to the scene’s effect is the contrast and saturation in the image. The foreground of the scene is very vivid and bright compared to the grey mountains. The dark green of the trees along the middle of the image create a virtual border between the meadow and the mountains. The meadow also seems very placid and happy compared to it’s background.

I think that the saturation of the cyans and the greens is what really pushes this image into the mystical realm. The reflection of the sky in the pool of water and the scattered wildflowers at the bottom of the image remind me so much of a fairytale scene that I cannot describe them as anything other than fairytale-esque. I know this is not a good analysis of the image, but I don’t want to analyze this image. It’s so magical to me that breaking it down into its nuts and bolts would feel like I was doing it an injustice.

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