The Fellowship of the Ring

It’s a stretchy-stretch Movie Title Wednesday…meaning the exact correlation between the image and the film may not be completely obvious. And perhaps, it’s totally misnamed. I debated this one, but I honestly couldn’t find too many films that dealt with trees or have trees featured prominently in them.

Either way, we’re stuck with Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. And in reality, I could think of a bazillion worse movies to be stuck with. In fact, this trilogy (or one giant movie as I like to think of them) is my favorite of all-time. As a kid I read the books for the first time and was blown away. I don’t think I understood a lot of it until I read it a second time years later. Then I got it. And since then I’ve read the books maybe 10 times. Not coincidentally, also my favorite books ever.

So when the movies were being made, I was so stoked and could only hope they’d be decent. And of course, they were awesome. Amazing films, they captured the essence of the books so well, I felt like what I had imagined in my head so many times was suddenly out there on the big screen.

Now that’s all interesting, but what does it have to do with a big tree on a hillside? Well, if you’ve seen the film or read the books, you know there is a giant…massive “Party Tree” where Bilbo celebrated his birthday and made his infamous farewell speech. For the movies, director Peter Jackson found the absolute perfect tree and setting to represent The Shire, Bilbo’s hobbit hole and the Party Tree. Photographer Trey Ratcliff traveled to New Zealand not too long ago and got a shot of this epic scene, which you can see right here.

I took this picture while on my “stormchasing” trip in Kansas, and as you can see, there are no storms in sight. I did crawl under and over two sets of barbed wire to get this shot though, so there was some “excitement” and “danger” involved…haha.

(exif: canon eos 5d mark ii, tamron 17-35mm 2.8, 19mm, f/22, iso 100, 1/20th)

  • Chris Nitz

    What a lovely setting. Glad some angry Kansan did not come running you down 😉

  • Scott Ackerman

    What Chris said. It’s not uncommon for us to carry shotguns around in our back pocket up here. 🙂 Well done bud.

  • Mike

    I told Chris I was more worried about the cows trampling me 🙂

  • Brian Furbush

    Nice shot Mike – always a sucker for beautiful light coming through trees and casting a warm glow on the scene. Captured it perfectly.

  • Jim Nix

    great shot and yep greatest movies ever!! have you read The Name of the Wind? it’s part 1 of a trilogy, and Wise Man’s Fear (book 2) is now out. If you haven’t read them yet, I recommend dropping everything else and getting started. You can thank me later. 🙂

  • Heath O’Fee

    So great, Mike…so great.

  • Chris DeAngelis

    Love the sunburst breaking through the leaves. Great scene!

  • Scott Wood

    I love it.

  • A.Barlow

    Beautiful shot man.

  • Toad Hollow Photography

    Wow, Mike, that’s awesome!! I love shooting trees, for some reason I find them to be really a special subject. This one is top drawer my friend!

  • Curt Fleenor

    Awesome shot Mike!

  • Jan Winther

    Nice shot!!

    Btw, Like your new site Mike!!

  • Mike

    Thanks everyone for the kind words 🙂

    Jan – Glad you like the new site, thank you!

  • sans

    Great shot! I am a fan. Yes. I think that the shot is just so perfect. I really love the view because i find it very much artistic and the beauty of our nature is just showcased in here. I really can’t wait to try doing this one also. I know am not the professional photographer but i am very much willing to learn about this stuff. Thanks for sharing this one! Great work by the way!

  • Kim

    You know what movie this tree reminds me of? Big Fish! I don’t know… probably it’s the golden light. But I love Lord of the Rings, too!