Cloud Heaps

Atlantic Storm Brewing Over the Mangroves - Islamorada

In serious need for some no stress down time in the Keys, my husband and I carved out a couple of days for retreat. While our day of arrival started out bright and sunny, it quickly changed mood with several advancing storms over our brief stay. But, we’d planned absolutely nothing but to sit by a balmy sea, watch the birds and sky and take whatever mood mother ocean was in. I entitled this post Cloud Heaps because I love the derivation of Cumulus from Cumulo meaning ‘heap’ or ‘pile’ in Latin. How perfectly descriptive is that? When you watch these low-level clouds develop vertically and pile up in big billowy heaps and advance in lines  towards you with their saturated, flat and ragged bases, you can only be amazed at the tremendous power of nature.  Just wanted to share some of the drama which unfolded while we watched.

Cloud Heaps over the Atlantic - Islamorada

These churning layers of advancing clouds seemed to reach out with vertically rising fingers ready to take you by storm! 🙂

And a great rain was not far after as we were overrun by this wall of cloud out of the Atlantic.

Atlantic View of Approaching Storm

My Photo Perch - Atlantic Side - Islamorada

My Atlantic Ocean Photo Perch – Islamorada


May we accept all of nature’s moods as part of life with storm being no less beautiful than sunny blue!



~ by Judy on August 31, 2013.

22 Responses to “Cloud Heaps”

  1. I’ve just been reading this while enjoying the last of a morning of rumbling thunder.

    • Looks like the cloud heaps came in timely then!! I actually love to hear the rumble of thunder and the earthy clean smell when it rains. I have no problem with rainy days!!

  2. …. Our Florida “cloudscapes” makes summer my favorite season down here – in spite of the bugs and heat and humidity. Great captures, m’lady!

    • Cloudscape is a great word choice!! And, we are truly blessed here in Florida to witness some nice meteorological drama in the summer time!! Yeah, I wait for the summer clouds and then find myself waiting again for the high wispy clouds of winter too. One thing I don’t have is a lightning picture…that must be a dedicated effort I think as randomness doesn’t seem to work very well!! Rainbows at least hang in a bit longer.

      Thanks for the comment!! So gentlemanly!! 🙂

      • …. Heh! I actually got a shot of a cloud to ground lightning bolt – at night with the full moon hanging just above the cloud wall. The storm was out to see a few miles, tracking slowly up the coast. Alas, the moon is a little blurry in the shot, or I’d publish it.

      • E it to me, I’d love to see it!,

  3. Those are absolutely outstanding! I know my friend the TV weather guy would be beside himself to see these too!

  4. I’ve never thought of doing clouds in black and white but my gosh, they’re even more dramatic. I do love clouds. I’m sure it’s the same there. In the summer, they can build so quickly you can literally watch them boil up.

    We’ve had so little of that kind of weather this summer – high pressure is great for blue skies. For clouds, not so muich. I’ll just enjoy yours until we get some of our own!

    • Yes, I think it is similar to making black and white images of white bird feathers. There are nuances of tone and shade which do not have the same impact or get a bit lost even in a detailed color image. One of the things I liked about the scenes was how white it was above the clouds, blinding and the way the light hits the upper layers, very monotone and lovely to watch.

      I hope that your end of summer brings a little desired cloudly drama but nothing of any harm whatsoever!

  5. Judy, It’s a shame that you didn’t pick up a good camera all those years before you got your first digital. I wonder, sometimes, what could have been if your discerning eye dedicated to hunting down all those serendipitous moments combined with your tenacity, love of life and willingness and preparation. The library of images would have been staggering.

    • LOL!! Well the digital library if not staggering is certainly taking up inordinate space on my computer!! Crimeny…I need to learn the fine art of delete!! But, the thing to remember is that in our PI days we could use the hobby shop to develop black and white or use the C4 kits for slides, but never really was I able to do things I wanted to images with any equipment or facility I had at my disposal. So digital opened up a whole new world in my den right at my fingertips. It is amazing really and I can only thank you and Jack for putting up with all my Photoshop learning for so long!! If I can return some joy and pleasure through posting these images; I am grateful for that!!

  6. You are an absolutely wonderful photographer. Wow. I happen to have a thing for photographing clouds, and I love photos of them, but I especially have an enchantment with natural light. Your eye and talent are marvelous. I’m about to spend a gazillion hours getting lost in your site, I have a feeling….

    Thank you for your gift.


    • Thanks for a truly lovely comment!! I agree on the love of natural light and the way it filters down through forest scenes or gives tone and shape to things like clouds. I broke down and bought a flash attachment a few months ago, but even with people pictures I’d rather the diffuse light by a window than flash. I welcome your visit through any of my posts and hope there are plenty of things to please your sense of things. Lately I have been enamored with our beautiful Florida birds and love the natural light on the white egrets and herons of our area!!

  7. Muy Buena Serie En B&W, Impresionante El Cielo … Un Saludo.

    • It is my pleasure completely to share them. I am so pleased you enjoyed the B & W treatment of the clouds. Some things just have so much texture and natural light that B & W can only give justice to!! Thank you!

  8. We all need time off from time to time, don’t we! These images are gorgeous, they capture the energy of and fascination with clouds. My favourite is the first one. Such dramatic clouds over an otherwise calm and serene landscape.

    • True that sometimes storms come charging in with high winds and tempestuous seas, and sometimes all is very serene and still with an ominous bank of building clouds enlarging as you watch and getting markedly closer all the while. On this day once the clouds overran our little cottage, it delivered a lot of cooling rain with lovely hard but mildly breezy rain. I like most any weather at the seaside. It is also amazing that such ominous looking storm events can pass through and you are in a different day of rain washed clear blue skies afterwards. Mother nature is a fickle mistress.

      The first picture is my favourite of the group as well. Big thanks for stopping to view the images and a wonderful comment!!

  9. Great cloud pictures I really like. Fine shades of grey, surely more than fifty 😉
    Have a great week

  10. WOW, these are absolutely amazing… Divine! You really capture the constructs of the clouds, their energy. I love the black-and-whites, too.

    • Oh, thanks for that! We are fortunate really to get these wonderful cloud pile ups in the summer. Seems like in winter I wait for the dramatic summer clouds and in summer I wait for those high thin wisps and brilliant blue of winter.

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