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Mason Cummings
510,190 followers -
Fine art landscape photographer based in Boulder.
Fine art landscape photographer based in Boulder.

510,190 followers
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Mason Cummings's posts

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Sunrise over East Beckwith Mountain in Gunnison National Forest, Colorado.
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Sage and Spirit

I spent most of last week in the Mojave Desert photographing three areas that are expected to be designated as new national monuments in the very near future. Despite all the grand landscapes and dramatic light I encountered throughout the week, this intimate scene in Big Morongo Canyon Preserve turned out to be one of my favorites from the trip.
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I'm a bit late to the punch, but here's a collection of my favorite images from 2015.

It was an amazing year, and I feel more fortunate than ever to have had so many incredible experiences. Photographically, it was perhaps my most productive year yet. I shot a number of incredible locations that The Wilderness Society is working to protect, and also went lots of "for fun" adventures in the best of company.

I tried to be selective with my choices, but still couldn't bring myself to narrow it down to an arbitrary ten. I barely posted this many images here throughout entire year, but that's no indication of the year's productivity.

If you're interested, check out the "Recently Added" gallery on my website for many more photos from the past year, and hopefully I'll start posting more of them here in 2016.

As always, I hope these images convey a small fraction of the magic of wild places. More than that, hope they inspire you to get out there and explore them for yourself. Thanks for taking a look!

Favorites of 2015: http://goo.gl/TvgO2D

Recently Added: http://goo.gl/BsGHYY

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Creative credit for this image goes to Miles Morgan, one of my favorite photographers. To see his better version of this shot (and MUCH more entertaining story), follow the link in the comments.

Last spring I was touring the California desert to document some of the places that are too special for development. Shooting on assignment is always a challenge because you're expected to deliver regardless of conditions. To add to the challenges, you're often confined to a very short timeframe with no opportunity for scouting.

I got the best light of the entire week on this evening, and when I stumbled upon Miles' composition I decided to work with something I knew to be tried and true. Reaching this spot on the side of a tufa was probably far more difficult than finding a unique comp of my own, but I was committed by the time I was perched some 15 feet above the ground. The only spot for a tripod forced my camera all the way to the side of the tufa, so there was no way to look through the viewfinder or even see the LCD. It was a process of shoot, check, curse, realign and repeat. Most of the poorly attempted shots were tilted as much as 30 degrees and totally unusable, but luckily I came away with one that I was able to work with.

Soon I'll have the unimaginable privilege of working through the challenges of shooting on assignment on a much more regular basis. My roll with The Wilderness Society will transition to more full time photography and video production after the holidays and I couldn't be more excited. In most cases, I won't be able to fall back on compositions from my favorite photographers because most of the lands we're working to protect are relatively unexplored. And more often than than not, I'll be scrambling to make the most of lackluster conditions. That is, in my opinion, one of the best ways to grow as an artist, and it's a challenge I will whole-heartedly embrace. I've always wanted to find an application for my work beyond making pretty pictures to hang on peoples' walls, and working to protect America's remaining wild places couldn't possibly be more aligned with my motivations as a photographer. Here's to the future!
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Oregon? Nope. Colorado... I've spent about seven summers of my life in Telluride but never even knew this gorgeous waterfall existed - I even worked 10 minutes away from this spot for two whole summers! Big ups to my buddy Eric for some solid research that not only turned us on to the falls, but allowed us to actually find it.

www.masoncummingsphotography.com
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Hill Sighed

My recent trip to the San Juans was probably my most productive couple days of shooting all year. On the first morning we were in the company of about 30 other photographers and there wasn't a cloud in the sky, so I decided to play around with my telephoto and look for more intimate scenes in order to get something a little different. I did take the same mountain shot as everyone else (there's a reason so many people were there - it's gorgeous!), but this still turned out to be one of my favorites from the morning.

www.masoncummingsphotography.com
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Sunrise at Shadow Lake in Wyoming's Bridger Wilderness. This was taken on the seventh morning of a recent eight day trek across the Wind River Mountains. By this point we were eager to finish our grueling trek, but it was also tough to leave a place as beautiful as this...

www.masoncummingsphotography.com
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The Departure

Morning light breaks through the clouds for a fleeting moment before the season's first snow begins to fall on Dallas Divide. Unfortunately I couldn't stick around for the snow, but I'm happy to have at least been there for a moment like this.

www.masoncummingsphotography.com
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It's an honor to have my recent Q&A with the +National Park Foundation featured on their Trail Talk Blog. Check it out and go #FindYourPark

http://www.nationalparks.org/connect/blog/qa-national-park-photographer-mason-cummings

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Late afternoon light in a relatively remote area of the Indian Peaks Wilderness, taken last month during a whirlwind of consecutive backpacking trips. 
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