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"Portal to Asgard(?)" by Sean R. Heavey (attribution corrected from earlier post).

(Updated comments)

From Yarko Tymciurak:
This one shot from the group a National Geographic Photography Contest winner (if you download the image, notice the copyright notice which appears on it: Sean Heavey):
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/wallpaper/ngm/photo-contest/2010/entries/wallpaper/week-4/ngpc-wp-wk-4-5/

From Don Denesiuk:
Yes. Props for the above photo go to +Sean R. Heavey an under appreciated (IMHO) photographer here on Google Plus. And as mentioned above it was a 2010 National Geographic magazine photo contest winner. http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/photo-contest/2010/entries/gallery/nature-winners/#/6867

From Sean R. Heavey:
For the record +Don Denesiuk. It's a stitched pano of four images... Then toned mapped. No HDR and no photoshop. Color adjustments in Aperture...
+Merritt Cooke. For the record it's very real... I wish I was that good at photoshop. It's a stitched pano of four images. Not an HDR... Toned mapped and then color balanced in Aperture.
+Thomas Jones. How do you know it is a composite of a bunch of photos taken on the same day? We're you there?

Thanks for everyone's contribution and patience as we sorted through (1) where credit was really due (Bravo, Maestro Heavey!!!) and (2) what really was behind the image from a technical standpoint.

The response to this post speaks for itself. One of the most extraordinary images many of us have ever seen rendered photographically.

Sean, is there some way that we can lend our networks to help you get broader credit/recognition for this 'gift' you have shared with us all?

With appreciation (singly and collectively),

Terry

(Original comment)
In a comment to Mott Kornicki's post of this photo, Seth Rosen addressed the eternal "Does She or Doesn't She (PhotoShop)?" question. His comment is technically enlightening: "Someone asked if it was a "real" picture. If it's not then it's one hell of a particle physics computer render. We are talking isotropic lighting effects, smoke simulation, particle defusion. I'm thinking it's real." I think Seth would agree with me that, with a photo such as this, the question is almost beside the point. Whether 'captured' or imagined, nature's power is awe-inspiring. This picture does the power justice.
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215 comments
 
OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG
 
Wait, so even if it's an "imagined" photo then "nature is awesome"? Um, a good digital artist can create any imagery, so how is that a testament to the power of nature? Still, a terrific pic!
 
Since there is a hole in the Ozone layer, what do we call this?
 
SUPPORT GOOGLE+ IF ONLY TO KILL FACEBOOK MONOPOLY

PS

awesome photo :)
 
It looks like a tornado or the tartis arriving from doctor who.
 
Old photo (July 2010). It is sorta Shopped, in that it's a composite of a bunch of photos taken in one day, but still, the underlying components are naturally occurring.
 
Holy crap I would not like to be in the middle of that!
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Holy rear flanking downdraft ;)
 
wowwwww awesomeeeeeeeeee :D
 
quite imaginative--and somehow it looks real :)
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I really wish people would STOP posting images which they didn't take themselves and not giving any credit to the original photographer who shot this. That is how you get yourself into legal trouble. This image is © 2012 to National Geographic and it has been badly cropped as well, so you don't even see the whole photo....sad.... an example of the original can be seen here which also gives appropriate credit to the photographer http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2010/11/national_geographics_photograp.html
 
loki , here's a entrance for you .. dare to come here :D
 
oh my gosh that is sooooo cool.
would have loved to have been there.
soooooo jealous!!!
 
That is Photoshop and HDR filters at work. When you look at the pic as a whole it wows but when you look at it closely there are elements out of place. Nature does show us how powerful it is and when someone has to create natures beauty and power you can often see the human weakness in it. I would say it's an an awesome special effect!
 
Couldn't possibly quote my instant reaction to this pic!
 
sh you know the rest of my first word
 
Definitely awe-some, not all natural of course..but a time will come when this kind of natural phenom will be reality...
 
Oh, it's real, baby. Whoever made that statement hasn't seen a storm like this in action!!
 
The picture is truly amazing. "Imagined" reality will never hold a candle to the real thing when it comes to weather.
 
the power is a very littil but god power u dont see.
 
John De Bord is right, if you post a picture you should, must, credit the photographer. For those that think it is photoshop, look up Supercell Cloud on the "amazing internets", there are numerous examples of this natural event. With the influx of cameras in everyone's pocket, we will surely see more amazing images, and the photographers should get credit.
 
woah!!is that real???love ur!great post!!
 
+Sharaz Hossein No it isn't PS or HDR and is an example of a supercell thunderstorm with outflow and a shelf cloud. This is naturally occurring stuff. Talk to me, I chase and photograph it. Also this image is stolen and was a finalist in the 2012 National Geographic image of the year contest.
 
+++++++++++++++++++++!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
I WONDWER WHO TOOK IT?...HOW? AND WHEN?
 
oh my god!!!!!!!!!!! the nature power??????????????
 
This an awsome frak of nature...just think of its awesome power!!!!
 
Looks like a lowering, rotating HP (High Precipitation) Supercell thunderstorm with a strong downdraft to me. This storm most likely produced several tornados and/or funnel clouds.
 
asdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdadsadasdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdasdsadsadasdsadasdsadasdasdasdasdasdasdddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd
 
adsasdasdsadassadasdad
 
To me look Real is absolutely amusing,and if knot still some of the pic must be real.
Still i think is real. Thanks ABS FANTASTIC i would love to be in the CENTER......
 
that is one epic and awesome photo you got there;]
 
That looks so wierd though... wow
 
As a reply to comments by John De Bord and Robert Cathey, I couldn't agree with you more: Photographers should be credited when Google+ users post their photographs. If you look at my post again, you will see that the title of the post and the first line of my comment read "'Portal of Asgard' by Vince Buyssen." Regards, Terry
 
As a reply to the many, many of you who posted other comments: Thank you so much for your taking the time to share your comments. Awesome response. Really gratifying.
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that looks fake and rel at the same time ... im very confused is it real or isnt it ...?
 
That DOES look like a portal to something mysterious and powerful. I had a hard time driving around the far side of the Rocy Mountains. Always so stunned by what I was seeing, I had to stop the car and just gape for awhile.
 
Holy cr@p that looks like armageddon or somesuch. Looks real enuff to me. I'd be driving the opposite direction for sure.
 
I found this picture to be illuminating!!! I hope you dont mind if I share it.
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Lil D
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The beauty of MOTHER NATURE...!!!!!
 
In the spirit of attributing photographic credit as accurately as possible, I repeat the (much appreciated) comment from Anneke Dubash: "I believe a reattribution for the image is required. The image is by Sean R. Heavey. I could find no person by the name of Vince Buyssen on Google."

http://www.alconartz.com/SRhPhoto/Welcome.html
 
Rain? UFO? UFRS? ( unidentified freak rain storm )
 
I have no clue as to what that is.. but Damn its huge
 
If I saw this there is no doubt in my mind that I would feel hopeless! That is HUGE!!!!!!!!!
 
AWESOME POWER !!! Where would you hide from something this powerful ???!!!
 
AWESOME POWER !!! Where would you hide from something this powerful ???!!!
 
AWESOME POWER !!! Where would you hide from something this powerful ???!!!
 
AWESOME POWER !!! Where would you hide from something this powerful ???!!!
 
Thats how i look when i turn in to super sayin 6 joseph look it up 
 
Aw geez, what an intense image. Dunno, if this is embellished with CG but if so, this would have been alots of work, I'd bet.
 
+Merritt Cooke - that credit looks misattributed; it appears the photographer's name is (according to these links) Sean Heavey:

This link from +Thomas Jones :
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1334672/Jaw-dropping-image-enormous-supercell-cloud-Glasgow-Montana.html

This one shot from the group a National Geographic Photography Contest winner (if you download the image, notice the copyright notice which appears on it: Sean Heavey):
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/wallpaper/ngm/photo-contest/2010/entries/wallpaper/week-4/ngpc-wp-wk-4-5/
 
For the record +Don Denesiuk. It's a stitched pano of four images... Then toned mapped. No HDR and no photoshop. Color adjustments in Aperture... 
 
+Merritt Cooke. For the record it's very real... I wish I was that good at photoshop. It's a stitched pano of four images. Not an HDR... Toned mapped and then color balanced in Aperture.
 
+Thomas Jones. How do you know it is a composite of a bunch of photos taken on the same day? We're you there? 
 
Thanks to the nudge from Kirby Moyers and the valuable info provided by Yarko Tymciurak, Don Denesiuk and -- most importantly, by far -- by Sean Heavey, we now seem to have this properly sorted out. I encourage all readers to go back to the top of the comment thread for the corrected version of my original post. Let's figure out if there might not be some way to harness the energy and enthusiasm which this post unleashed to support Sean's remarkable photography. Cheers!
 
PLEASE EVERYONE -- SHARE THIS CORRECTED VERSION WITHIN YOUR NETWORKS SO THAT SEAN HEAVEY CAN GET DUE CREDIT FOR THIS EXTRAORDINARY PHOTOGRAPH. THANKS!
 
Nicely done. I'll take the return nudge and go shopping at Mr. Heavey's site!
 
OMG ! Great .....yeahhhhhhhh
 
It's "Montana Thunderstorm" by Sean Heavey. You'll see full information on this if you look for a subsequent post with this image. It was a finalist for the National Geographic Photography Contest.
raf tm
 
fenomenal impactado y asombrado jamas habia visto una imagen asi exelente.........
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