A close up study of a Smoke tree leaf. Part of a series of autumnal leaves photographed in a graphic close-cropped style.
Leaves scatter themselves beneath our feet every year as part of nature's cycle of renewal and hibernation. In the autumn trees shed their canopy of leaves, also known as abscission, in order to help them to preserve moisture as they enter a dormant state through the winter.
As the tree becomes dormant, a compound called abscisic acid triggers a seal to develop at the base of the leaves, before they fall off. This reduces water reaching the leaf and traps the chemicals remaining in the leaves. They gradually break down, changing the color of each leaf before it drops to the ground.
The simple act of picking them up and looking at them can be quite a mindful process. Observe the tiny capillaries which are part of a complex vascular system that starts in the roots of the tree. These patterns are echoed throughout nature and are fascinating when enlarged as prints. A humble leaf suddenly becomes something graphic and monumental.
Archival pigment print on smooth matt Hahnemühle Photo Rag 308 gsm heavyweight art paper.