I recently received a request for a photograph that I do not currently have in my files so I planned a quick trip to try and capture it. I pre-visualized the image: sunrise light on a specific snow covered mountain with some nice clouds in the sky, and on the morning I was there to make the image conditions were almost perfect with the exception of the clouds. I made the shot and granted it is a nice image, but not exactly what I was hoping for and I will most likely return to try again. I have learned over the years that patience and perseverance reward the photographer. That said, later in the day as I was traveling the weather started to change and as I was driving through the northern San Luis Valley an amazing lenticular cloud developed over the Northern Sangre de Cristo Range. It was mid-day light, but the combination of the snow covered mountains with the incredible sky and clouds was too good to pass up and envisioning it in black and white, I knew it would be an excellent image. So the moral of this story is that as photographers as much as we may plan and have hopes to capture certain images, it is often the random serendipitous chance moments that we encounter that produce the most satisfying images. I am not saying you should not plan and pre-visualize, but just getting out there and seeing what images come your way can be rewarding. In other words just get out and do it and see what nature provides!
A Lenticular Cloud over the Sangre de Cristo Range, CO
Photographers today have some amazing tools available to them in the digital darkroom! The ability to to produce either a color or black and white image from a digital file today gives the photographer great control and allows vision, experimentation and choice in bringing the final image to life as a fine print. I recently started using Silver Efex Pro, a photo shop plug-in from Nik Software, and for someone who originally did B&W burning,dodging, and toning in the chemical darkroom , the control over the image that this digital tool allows is is amazing. As an example I present a macro image of Broadleaf Chasmanthium, a grass species I photographed this Summer in Oklahoma. Although I do really like the color image, I believe the B&W version is a bit more “artistic” and has its own unique beauty. As an artist I find it very liberating to have such tools available to me as I pursue my creative vision to capture the beauty the natural world.
Chico Basin Summer Clouds ©Stephen Weaver
I have recently been notified of my work being accepted into two upcoming exhibitions, The Black and White Exhibition at The Center for Fine Art Photography in Fort Collins Colorado, and The Fine Arts Exhibition at the Colorado State Fair. I am particularly pleased about the Black and White Show selection as my image Chico Basin Summer Clouds was one of 51 images selected from 2200 entries.The Black and White Exhibition will be showing from August 28- September 16
Two images, Crestone Peaks and Sand Dunes, and Iris Meadow Sunset were selected for the State Fair, which runs from August 27-September 7. I will be attending the opening reception on August 27 from 5-8PM