Photo: Coloring Book

Havasu Falls, Arizona

The colors are real... but doesn't it look like something out of a child's wild imagination? I guess they used just about all the prettiest crayons in the box for this one. Brilliant turquoise water. Orange sandstone cliffs. And pink clouds against such a beautiful blue sky. This shot is all about color.

I really wanted to get a shot of the falls under a brilliant sky, but I wasn't convinced we'd have any really good color. But I waited anyway. The color didn't last long, but I was in the just the right place to capture it. The canyon was in shade, so the range of light wasn't too bad. I used a circular polarizer to minimize glare off the water, and reduced the brightness of the sky just a bit in post-processing to get the exposure exactly right. Over or under exposure will make the colors feel dull and lifeless... but the correct exposure really makes the colors pop.

What do you think? Should I convert to black and white? ;)   (Just kidding, of course.)

#waterfallwednesday   #exposure   #photographytips  
Photo: Sunrise Overlooking the Columbia River Gorge - Oregon, USA
Photo: The World on Fire

#PhotographyDiscussion #TheExperienceProject #Photography 

What lessons have YOU learned from experience?

Nature is breathtakingly beautiful. She lulls you into feeling safe and calm. But she can turn dangerous in an instant.

I am pretty darn careful out there - but sometimes Nature reminds me that being careful isn't always enough.

Damaged gear? Drowned cameras? Injuries? Accidents? Share your stories, and the lessons you've learned! Here are a few of mine!

1. Never let go of your camera or tripod when you are shooting in very windy conditions. My 10-22mm was badly damaged when it took a bad fall in high winds in Iceland, and the same thing happened to my 180mm macro and my 50D when +Jay Patel was shooting with them on a beach in California.

2. If at all possible, leave your bag high and dry if you are shooting on a beach. Jay ended up underwater with ALL his gear when a rogue wave grabbed his bag and threw him off balance in Iceland. Luckily, his Loka backpack from f-stop kept everything dry... except for the tripod and camera he was holding in his hand.

3. Don't assume that because you've done it before, you'll be ok doing it again. I ended up falling hard on my butt in the middle of a stream in Montana when I jumped onto a dry rock thinking it wouldn't be slippery. I'd done it carefully moments before - testing the rocks to make sure they were rough and easy to stand on. But this dry rock was slippery. The camera and tripod survived the fall. My butt was pretty muddy, though. ;)

4. Logs and other buoyant objects that are floating in the ocean or sitting on the beach can be deadly. I was photographing small icebergs on a beach in Iceland, when a rogue wave came up and picked up a bunch of bergs. They slid smoothly past me, and then turned and raced back to the ocean. I was hit by at least four of them. It felt like being hit by a car.

I'm sure there are many more... but that's what comes to mind for now. ;) Just be careful out there. Nature isn't friendly. She's breathakingly beautiful, she lulls you into feeling safe and calm, and she can kill you in an instant.
Photo: Photographing Star Trails

#Photography #naturephotography 

While we were in Utah last week, +Jay Patel and I had mostly clear skies. Not so great for daytime photography - but awesome if you are hoping to shoot stars or the moon at night.

On this night, we set up our cameras near Balanced Rock in Arches National Park for a nice, long evening shooting star trails. It was relatively warm out there - though after a while, the wind really picked up. We hid out in the lee of a giant rock nearby, but got kinda chilly anyway. Ah well. It was awesome fun.

There's a lot to think about when you are shooting something like this - exposure, digital noise, the location of the north star, what time the moon rises, cloud cover, stabilizing your camera, light from passing planes, blending in post-processing... the list goes on.

I am putting together a blog post that will include as many details as I can think of, and I'll post the link when it goes live. Maybe it will help someone who is interested in trying something similar. Meanwhile, I have a couple more shots that I'm working on as well. Time to get back to work!
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