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on Apr 4, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Time Rolls By

There are times when the camera just sits there staring at me and in my guilt, I see it saying, “What, you forgot me?” It was one of those weekends when photography just took back seat. That’s until the last hours of Sunday when we snuck out and headed to the lakes. The clouds were floating by, the light kissing this and that peak, it was just to inviting not to make some clicks. So with Sadie leading the way, off we walked. In my mind’s eye, I was shooting B&W. The blue sky background with the great clouds, the dark granite behind the snow, even the dark water with the bright highlights, all said B&W to me. While everything in the camera is the same, the way that I arrange the elements in the frame is often slightly different. So I put the D5 up to my eye, zoom the 18-35AFS to 18mm and what I had in my mind went from B&W to color. Using Dehaze in...

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on Mar 31, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Befriending Wildflowers

The glory of spring is celebrated in the wildflowers that carpet our landscape. While I love looking at them, I’m just not into getting down on the ground, in the breeze, arse in the air photographing them. Yet, I can’t just pass them up. So over the years I’ve come up with strategies permitting to capture their beauty while minimizing the the aspects of wildflower photography I detest the most. Here are two examples of the techniques I use to give you an idea of what I’m talking about. The top photo was taken with a 300PF and the bottom with the 18-35AFS. The two techniques are kinda focal length dependent. Both techniques are blossom quantity dependent, that is, there are more then one blossom in the photo. This is because not every single blossom as to be tack sharp for the photograph to work. So if there is a breeze, it won’t ruin the moment or cause me to stand around for hours waiting for them to stop....

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on Mar 9, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Last Days of Winter

Next fall I’ll look through my files of the images I took this winter looking for inspiration and I know I’ll say, “Why didn’t I get out and shoot more?!” I know already I didn’t shoot enough of the birds at the office this winter and I’ll regret that. My gut tells me I didn’t get out and brave the wx enough and shoot the magnificent landscape right out my front door. So all I want to do is enlighten to the mistakes I know I’ve made this winter so in these last days, you might not make the same. I was fortunate enough to spend a grand week in Yellowstone in January and was able to scratch one off the bucket list, shoot at West Thumb in winter. That hint of color in the white landscape is something I love to do. Shooting the 18-35AFS, in the cold to capture the steam, in the overcast to create a monochromatic landscape, with a sweeping view, is one winter scene...

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on Feb 2, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Hoar Frost Heaven

With greeting the sun comes surprises and photographically, always something fun to work. In the 21 degree fog of Fargo, Hoar Frost blanked the landscape. Chuck had never, ever, never, seen Hoar frost let alone photographed it! His head was spinning and spinning and it wasn’t from the Clover coffee and Starbucks, so off we went looking for great examples to photograph before he jumped on his flight home. What really made this location so sweet was the light on the horizon. The sun was up and hidden in the overcast but there was a stripe of light still with the morning glow. That stripe of light sets the mood and being yellow, makes the white that much visually white. The last element to setting off the hoar frost were the dark tree trunks. The shooting was simple, D4s / 70-200f4 AFS and the finishing was ACR, Nik Pro Contrast, Tonal Contrast and Detail Extractor. And Chuck, he was all smiles when he boarded his flight. Can’t ask more...

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on Feb 1, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Trees in the Fog

It was like a syfy movie, one moment blue skies and the next a dark, ominous fog rolled in and covered the landscape. At first, it kinda put a blanket on our fun but then we started to drive about looking for targets of opportunity. There are rows of trees between the large plots with most not having any real character, just serving their roll as wind breaks. This particular row though with its shape and the fog caught our imagination so we stopped. The photos came easily, the top photo taken with the 24-70VR and the bottom taken with the 70-200f4AFS. The finishing is right out of ACR, even easier. I really love these kinds of photos and simply don’t get the opportunity enough to make...

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on Jan 21, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Let It Snow!

Simply put, I love the white stuff! I realize at the same time that not everyone shares the same passion for snow, that being cold thing. With that in mind, I’m always looking for photographic opportunities where I can give the viewer the feeling of snow without them having to get cold. Whenever it’s actually snowing, the flakes are falling, my mind turns to this challenge. On our adventure in Yellowstone last week, had a number of opportunities to explore this challenge and one time in Hayden Valley was the best! What were the conditions that made it great? The first was the light which is always essential. The light was sidelight and spotty which means it was playing dodgeball with the clouds. Next, the clouds themselves were dark and ominous in the west. This combo, the light on the white snow and the dark cloud in the background provided the contrast to see the snow in the photo. Lastly, the snowflakes themselves were large and blowin pretty hard....

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