POTD: Hawksbill Crag

Title and Location

Hawksbill Crag

Location: Upper Buffalo Wilderness
Camera: Phase One P45 Digital Back, Cambo RS Camera, Schneider 72L Lens
Settings: f/11, ISO 100, 5 seconds
When: August 2009

Hawksbill Crag is the most recognized natural feature in the “Natural State”.  This rocky outcrop overlooks the Buffalo River Valley and the views are absolutely stunning.  The three mile, round trip, hike to visit the crag is relatively easy making it one of the most popular tourist destinations in Arkansas.  The dropoff of over one hundred feet is deceptively dangerous and has been the site of many fatal accidents. It is all to easy to slip on the loose gravel or get vertigo looking over the edge.

An image from Hawksbill Crag is a must for any Arkansas photographer.  Looking for something different I hiked to the crag well before sunrise and was rewarded with the opposing colors of a magenta sky against the green foliage adding depth to the photograph.  Fog hovering over the river added much needed definition to the dark valley.

All my images are available as limited edition artwork. Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print

Advertisements

POTD: Ambiance

Title and Location

Ambiance

Location: Ohio Pass, Colorado
Camera: Phase One P45, Schneider 72L, Cambo Technical Camera
Settings: f/16, 2 seconds, ISO 50
When: October, 2011

I love the experience of aspen groves ablaze in autumn yellow and Ohio Pass near Crested Butte, Colorado is one of the best places to photograph them.  The forest follows down the side of the mountain providing a background full of color.

When photographing the texture of the forest I try to include some kind of compositional element.  In this shot the hiding evergreen adds the compositional element to anchor the viewer’s gaze.

All my images are available as limited edition artwork. Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.

POTD: Secret Garden

Title and Location

Secret Garden

Location: Smoky Mountain National Park, Tennessee
Camera: Phase One P65+, Mamiya 645D, 35mm
Settings: f/11, iso 50, 1/250
When: April 2010

A panoramic view of White Oak Sink in the Smoky Mountain National Park.  An easy two mile hike and you find yourself in beautiful, open forest carpeted with blue phlox.  The bright light backlit the young leaves and gave a nice side lighting on the tree trunks.

If you see phlox blooming along the road to Cades Cove you might ask a ranger or photography guide to take you to White Oak Sink.  They usually bloom at the same time around the second week of April.

This was the first photography trip I took after my accident.  The two mile hike would be a snap now but back then I wondered if I could make it.  I would love to find myself back here with flowers in bloom.  (Actually I would love to revisit all the locations I have photographed.  As you would expect, my photography technique and artistic vision has improved over the last 7 years.)

Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.

POTD: Smoky Mountain Stream

Title and Location

Smoky Mountain Stream

Location: Smoky Mountains near Townsend, TN
Camera: Phase One P65+, Mamiya 645D, 35mm
Settings: f/11, ISO 50, 1/2 sec
When: April 2010

An iconic Smoky Mountain stream photographed along the middle prong of the Little River.  On the road to Cades Cove you’ll see a turnoff for Tremont Educational Facility.  This short drive is one of the most iconic in the park and it is beautiful almost anytime.  This dirt road follows the river the whole way, park anywhere and point your camera.  On the weekends this spot will be busy with photographers shooting the horseshoe shaped cascade.

The maples in early spring have a nice bright color that contrasted well against the rhododendron foliage in the background.

Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.

POTD: Phlox and Mayapple

Title and Location

Phlox and Mayapple

Location: Smoky Mountain National Park, Tennessee
Camera: Phase One P65+, Mamiya 645D, Mamiya 35mm
Settings: f/16, ISO 50, 1/250
When: April 2010

This scene was photographed in a previously secret area of Smoky Mountain National Park called White Oak Sink. The location was not publicised because the flora is very fragile. If you visit this area, please stay on the trails.

When the sky is clear blue and the light intense you can still make dramatic photographs if you pay attention to the angle of light. Notice how I moved the camera and composed the scene so the sunlight was directly backlighting the trees.  I exposed for the shadows and increased the shutter speed until the highlights were not clipped. Using my hand I shielded the lens from direct sunlight or there would have been serious flare in the image.

Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.

POTD: Patriarch

Title and Location

Patriarch

Location: Mt. Magazine State Park
Camera: Phase One P65+, Cambo RS, Schnedier 24XL
Settings: f/16, ISO 50, 1/25 sec
When: November, 2010

A clearing storm at the end of the day added some nice color to an already dramatic scene.  This beautiful red cedar with a natural bansai look clings to the side of the clif overlooking the Petit Jean River Valley.  Looking at it’s precarious perch, it is hard to believe this tree is nearly 800 years old.

I am drawn to images of survival against all odds and trees are one of my favorite subjects – win/win. There is something about these old trees that speaks to the soul softly whispering “Hang in there, you might accomplish something amazing!”.

This image is made from two exposures stitched to make a vertical panorama. IT was a pretty easy composition, just keep the camera level and don’t let the foliage overlap with the surrounding trees. Vertical panos make a huge impression in a small space.  Imagine standing in front of an 8′ print of this image.

Another view of this tree was my first post on this blog.

Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.

POTD: Long Pool Falls

Title and Location

Long Pool Falls

Location: Ozark National Forest, Arkansas
Camera: Phase One P45, Cambo RS, Schneider 35XL
Settings: f/11, ISO 50, 5 seconds
When: May 2009

New photographers often ask how do I know when to shoot a vertical or horizontal composition.  I know I fell into this trap talking to a pro who was conducting a workshop I attended.  In hindsight, the answer is obvious:

“Always shoot a vertical after a horizontal and vice-versa.”

Obvious – right?  It’s surprising how many compositions can easily be captured in both vertical and horizontal orientation.  With an L-bracket and arca swiss style clamp you can switch orientations in a few seconds.

Selling art, I’ve sold many more horizontal images but there are occasions where only a vertical will do.  The best ise of vertical composition is on the cover of a magazine.  A worthy goal for any photographer.

A few days back I wrote about this waterfall with a vertical composition called “Ozark Spring”.

Click here for more information or to purchase a fine art print.