I am pleased to announce that the May 2011 Print of the Month will be Mothers Love, an adorable image of a mother prairie dog and two of her young ones photographed in Wichita Mountains NWR, Oklahoma!
There is nothing less interesting to me as a landscape photographer than a bright clear cloudless sky, but add some clouds and marginal weather with interesting light and wow, some magical images can be made. A great example of this is my Bison and Crestone Peaks image where the sun lights up the layers of clouds formed from an inversion and a clearing late Spring storm with fresh snow on the peaks . Earlier in the morning the valley was blanketed in fog and I was able to make some interesting images but as it started to burn off, this amazing scene was revealed. Clouds can add a dynamic element to any landscape and can make any image truly unique.
I will offer two additional examples, a black and white image of amazing cumulus cloud build up over the Chiricahua Mountains in Arizona in July, and early morning clouds over the Tall Grass Prairie Preserve in Oklahoma. Without the clouds my camera would have stayed in the bag.
Cumulus Cloud Build-up over the Chiricahua Mountains, AZ
Tall Grass Prairie Morning, Oklahoma
Posted in "landscape photography", Image Thoughts, Uncategorized
Tagged "landscape photography", Arizona, Black and White, Chiricahua Mountains, clouds, Colorado, Crestone Peaks, Medano Ranch, Oklahoma, Tall Grass Prairie Preserve, weather
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.
A blast of Winter came to Colorado over the last few days; snow, cold and wind. Now I actually like cold and snowy weather; it can provide beautiful and challenging photography, but my senses were still accustomed to the wonderful warm days of Indian Summer in Colorado that were present just days before the storm . This morning, as I scraped the ice off my truck in 16 degree temps, my mind wandered back to my summer excursions, particular to a trip I made in July to Oklahoma when the temperatures went over 100 degrees. On one day I spent a wonderful morning at the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in the Osage Hills of Northern Oklahoma and was able to capture a great sunrise. Conditions were perfect with incredible verdant green grass and wonderful clouds in the sky that lit up as the sun hit the horizon. Viewing it certainly warms me up and brings back wonderful memories. Isn’t that why we all make photographs?
Sunrise on the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, Oklahoma