Crossing Uneven Ground

Fiddleheads Cafe in Mequon, Wisconsin to Display My Photography

Fiddleheads Cafe in Mequon, Wisconsin to Display My Photography –

Over twenty of my images will be on display at Fiddleheads Cafe in Mequon, Wisconsin from March 1 through May 31, 2018.  I’m thrilled to have an opportunity to put together a show for this venue and invite all of you to an informal opening on Saturday, March 3rd.

Please stop by Fiddleheads on Saturday, March 3rd. I’ll be hanging out from 4:00 until 6:00pm. I’d love to see you there.
10530 N. Port Washington Road • Mequon, WI 53092 • 262-241-8819


About My PhotographyThomas Lemke

I’m never happier than when I can wander the Northwoods searching for a photograph.   Over time a couple of things have occurred to me.  The first is that some places are dear to my heart. I love the land of Northern Wisconsin and while I enjoy photographing all over the world I keep coming back here. It is a quiet beauty when compared to the eye-stunning vistas and massive mountains of say, the American West.  Maybe it is subtlety or perhaps it is that Wisconsin’s secrets are more closely kept, but what better challenge for a photographer than revealing a subject’s quiet wisdom.

The other thing is that photography is a medium that conveys a sense of verisimilitude but also allows for creative interpretation.  A photograph is a reflection of a subject that exists in nature but through the photographic medium it also reflects my internal state.  As I compose an image I’ve got a pretty good idea about which photographic tools I’ll use to fashion the final result:  black & white or color, sharp or selective focus, emphasize with more light or dim down with less, and the like. The result of my collaboration with nature, sifted through technique, is then offered to the viewer who may re-experience the subject in their own way.

This display features two ongoing projects:

The Fiddleheads

Three Ferns


These little sprouts of ferns make their appearance in Wisconsin for a very short time in spring, usually around mid-May.  The fiddlehead season is short and within days of their birth they morph into full-fledged ferns.  I see these little creatures as having human and other-worldly characteristics so I explore their anatomy and personalities in intimate close-ups. They have frills and curls that seem mystical and musical. I use a technique called “focus-stacking” to get the whole fiddlehead in sharp focus.  Normally close-up subjects are mostly out of focus with just some parts sharply defined. Showing the whole plant at eye-level and in tack-sharp focus throughout transforms these diminutive forest dwellers into impressive presences.

Link to my Fiddlehead Images.

The Wolf River

Ice on branches on the Wolf River Wisconsin

My longest running project is photographing Central Wisconsin’s Wolf River.  I have a long relationship with this wild river, fishing, rafting and photographing with friends and family, many of whom are no longer with us.  My favorite time on the river, in any season, is early morning.  The light is quiet and gentle forms move in the dim shadows. If I leave my shutter open for a time exposure, the moving water transforms into diaphanous fogs and wispy cirrus cloud patterns.  You never really know what kind of shapes long exposures will express. Quiet runs may reveal a whirlpool. Raging rapids smooth, stretch and swirl revealing ephemeral, ghostly forms. I see in them the passage of time and friends past.

Link to my Wolf River Images

I hope you enjoy the images….Tom Lemke


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