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The Flow #2 | by Didacus67 (mostly off, my friends...)
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The Flow #2

The Val Bregaglia is one of the most beautiful valleys in the Alps. Although it is on the Italian side of the Alpine watershed, the high valley has been in Switzerland since the Italian protestants wanted to be part of that country in mid-16th century, to avoid the Inquisition. However the low Val Bregaglia, often called Valchiavenna, lays in Italy and the river Mera (Maira in the Swiss part) flows into Lake Como. Acquafraggia* is a short and frequently steep stream flowing from one of the tributary valleys on the right orographical side of the Val Bregaglia. Almost at the end of its precipitous course, the Acquafraggia reaches the outlet of the hanging valley where it flows, forming a couple of twin most beautiful waterfalls. Even Leonardo da Vinci was impressed by these waterfalls, and they are mentioned in the Codex Atlanticus (a marvel I have been able to see and touch only once during my years working at the Biblioteca Ambrosiana). Curiously, I have been not able to find any statement about the height of the final waterfalls of the Acquafraggia: they always quote that Leonardo says they are about "400 braccia Milanesi" ( = Milanese unit of lenght, an arm's length; Leonardo was working in the Duchy of Milan between 1482 and 1499).


I have photographed the Acquafraggia waterfalls times upon times, but I have never found those shots even remotely satisfying. At last I have realised that trying to depict the twin waterfalls in their entirety has a reductive effect on their beauty and majesty. So I decided to capture a small series of details, mainly to be processed in bw. This photo is the second one; I know that, being portrait-oriented, it is somehow penalised by the layout of Flickr on PC (not on smartphones though), but I find this waterfall detail so intriguing and enriched by the sunbeams leaking from the left in the top part of the scene (here we are looking at the top of one of the two waterfalls)...

Since I did not expect to engage myself in "serious" photography that day (I had my camera mainly for family & friends candid portraits), I was shooting handheld single RAWs.


RAWs processed with Darktable. Further processing (including the monochrome via LAB channels decomposition) with The Gimp.


* This apparently silly name derives from the Latin phrase and toponym Aqua fracta, i.e. "precipitous water" or fragmented water" (because of the many waterfalls it forms during its brief course covering a staggering 2,000 mt drop (more than 6,500 ft))

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Taken on August 15, 2020