Reveling in Winter

While spring, summer and fall share universal appeal in Michigan, blustery winter is less easy to love. “You have to find your own way to enjoy it,” said self-taught photographer Ken Scott, who lives in Leelanau County near Sleeping Bear Dunes Naational Lakeshore. And he has.

Winter though is fickle, a photographic season that demands patience but doesn’t make promises, often presenting the best of its moments in whispers or on whims. Sometimes these are uncovered by chance or fortitude.

Other times they are gifts simply given to those who seek them.

On these pages, Michigan photographers Todd and Brad Reed, Tom Haxby, Stacy Niedwiecki, Michael Buck and Ken Scott share a few of their favorites.

See more of their work by visiting them online at;;; and

Lisa M. Jensen is editor of Michigan BLUE Magazine.

Sunset Awesomeness“Sunset Awesomeness”
Photography by Ken Scott

To be out on the shoreline ice for sunset is always a mystery. That’s part of why I love it — I never know what I’m going to see. Patience, persistence and faith are qualities that continually surface during these outings … You just have to show up and be ready.”

Winter Tree“Winter Tree”
Photography by Tom Haxby

“On a below-zero degree morning, I waited for the sun to kiss the frosted branches of this tree,” shared Traverse City-area photographer Tom Haxby. “When a cloud moved in, it became the perfect backdrop behind the smaller trees on the hilltop. Sprawled low in the snow for the best angle, as the sun continued to rise, I took a half-dozen shots — I never did feel the cold on that January morning.”

Snowy Owl“Snowy Owl”
Photography by Stacy Niedzwiecki

“Instead of heading out into the Black Friday crowds the day after Thanksgiving in 2010, I spent my time in complete solitude, searching open fields for elusive snowy owls,” shared West Michigan photographer Stacy Niedzwiecki. “After well over an hour, I suddenly spotted a young juvenile, and watched it the rest of the afternoon from my vehicle.”

Sunrise on Ice“Sunrise on Ice”
Photography by Ken Scott

“Again and again, I’m blown away with what nature offers up if you are willing to get out there.”

Winter might be cold, but it can warm you with its beauty. This is what I tried to capture, so everybody could enjoy it the way I do.
— Michael Buck

Todd Reed's Day 39 of 365“Todd Reed’s Day 39 of 365 — Feb. 8, 2010”
Photography by Todd Reed

“Winter sunrises can occasionally be amazing. Early indications were that this morning’s sunrise could be one of those. I quickly set up the camera on the tripod on the deck of our home at Crosswinds. After a few minutes waiting for peak color, presto!”

The Perfect Storm“The Perfect Storm”
Photography by Michael Buck

“It was the most perfect winter storm, with gigantic flakes of snow falling all around,” reflected Grand Rapids-based Michael Buck, who captured these images along the Grand River last winter. “From the soft white curves of snow-covered banks to the stark dark lines of the cold forest, compositions abounded. Branches, bridge, fence — every element had become a work of art.”

Brad Reed's Day 33 of 365“Brad Reed’s Day 33 of 365 — Feb. 2, 2010”
Photography by Brad Reed

“My dad and I had been hoping for another big snowfall to hit Mason County. But so far, this winter had been very hit or miss in terms of any snow accumulation. That forced us to look deeper for good photographic moments,” notes Ludington-based photographer Brad Reed of this snow, ice and water he found along the inner North Breakwater in Ludington.


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