With my last new image for the month, I am hoping to make more people aware of the importance of regular mammograms. If discovered early enough, a woman can beat cancer. I did not know this, until witnessing it firsthand. It made me realize how important it is to share this message.
The gathering at North Lake takes place at sunrise, during fall in the Eastern Sierras. I arrived here while it was still dark, and was greeted by an early season snow storm. Using my headlamp to navigate the area, I quickly found a spot to set up, just before the place became overrun with photographers. The storm broke for a short time during sunrise, allowing for a small window of opportunity to capture some High Sierra Mountain light.
The day’s first sun rays awaken a beautiful lupine field, during a summer sunrise at Lake Tahoe.
Recently I experienced one of the most beautiful scenes I have witnessed, while photographing wildflowers at Lake Tahoe. However, even with the excitement of capturing new images, I could not ignore the sadness I felt during my visit here.
Not that long ago, this particular view could not be experienced. The recent record-low snow pack has resulted in a dramatic drop in Lake Tahoe’s water level. Due to this fact, both locals and visitors could now experience the immense beauty of an area once completely under water.
Standing in the middle of all this, taking in the breathtaking show, my goal was to photograph the beauty. However, my biggest hope is that the coming winter produces a large enough snow pack to return Lake Tahoe to a healthier level.
A colorful dramatic sunrise at Natural Bridges State Beach, in Santa Cruz, California.
*Breast Cancer Awareness*Reach Out*
I wanted to do something different, and share a story with my latest image.
Just over a year ago a mother moved to the U.S. to be closer to her son. For years and for various reasons she had not taken the time to make any medical appointments. Now in the U.S. she was encouraged to take better care of herself and sign up for a medical plan. This led to her having a routine mammogram followed by a biopsy, and then being diagnosed with breast cancer. Learning that she had breast cancer was a shock and very scary; however in this case the fortunate thing was the cancer was detected early, at stage one. The oncology doctor scheduled the woman for the necessary lumpectomy surgery, and after some recovery time and tests it was thankfully confirmed that the woman had beaten breast cancer.
I hope by writing this short story, I will be able to reach out to someone who will think about reminding their wife, sister, daughter, girlfriend and of course mother to have regular mammograms. This is so important and means a lot to me. Cancer is a very hard word to hear, but if caught early, the chances of survival can increase enough to save many lives.
One great benefit of having some interest in the sky during sunrise or sunset is the opportunity to photograph a scene at different times, and be able to come away with more than one acceptable image.
On this particular morning, there was very nice cloud cover above Lake Tahoe. Hoping to make the best of the situation, I set up to photograph not only at sunrise, but also just before and after sunrise. I also used different filter techniques to photograph each moment, so I could capture multiple effects. For this image I used a 10-stop ND filter, to show the effect of streaking pre-sunrise clouds above Emerald Bay. When shooting in the direction of the sun, I like to use a long exposure to obtain this streaking cloud effect just before sunrise and also after sunset, through twilight.
Carefully check the first couple of exposures in the camera’s viewfinder. If you notice blown-out highlights in the sky you will have to adjust the in-camera exposure. Another option is to attach a neutral density grad filter to your Big Stopper filter. This will eliminate blown-out highlights,
Landscape photography can be all about catching a beautiful or dramatic fleeting moment. However, there are also times when a photographer is presented with an opportunity to take the time to look at a particular scene and determine the best way to capture an image which conveys a specific look or feeling. In this instance of looking through the camera’s viewfinder, a landscape photographer is looking at the whole picture.
In this image of the dead tree at Botany Bay, I had enough time to compose the image exactly the way I wanted, so I could convey the feeling of motion I felt, and the different texture effects that were being created, within the frame.
I was able to take several different exposures of this scene, before carefully reviewing each shot once I returned home. I decided that this 4-second exposure best conveyed the elements of the whole picture I witnessed while photographing this scene.
hile it is a natural feeling for a photographer to attempt to emulate the photographic capture of an iconic scene, the image below is an example of how rewarding it can be to also seek out lesser photographed views.
Read below the image for more detail about how I photographed this scene, which is located above Twin Lakes, just outside the town of Mammoth Lakes, California.
After scouting this location the day before, I decided to return here at sunrise to photograph this scene.
A partly cloudy sky was forecast; however to my disappointment the sky was completely clear. Therefore, I chose not to shoot at first light, but to wait until the morning sun illuminated part of the scene, creating warm tones. Once the sunlight fully lit the trees at the left of the scene, I began shooting.
I started out by composing for a vertical shot; however I also wanted to shoot this scene in horizontal orientation, so I quickly repositioned the tripod head, before the good light was gone. In this format, I was able to include more of the top of the waterfall; therefore I chose a similar shutter speed to retain detail in the water, as it tumbled over the rock ledge.
I wanted to begin 2013, with an image that contains both meaning and emotion. On December 19, 2012, I became a United States Citizen, so I knew that I wanted to post an image of one of America’s most iconic views. However, I felt even more emotion after the tragedies that recently took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
My thought was to name this image ‘Iconic Peace’ wishing that one day peace will become as iconic as the beauty of nature we have become so happily use to. As I have written on my website ‘About’ Page; my intention and hope is to bring people together through the beauty of nature.
On this cold morning, there were no clouds in the sky to dramatize the scene. As I could not settle on a less photographed composition, I decided to wait until a good part of the mountain peaks were bathed in sunlight. I attached a polarizing filter to my lens, and turned it until the color was at its most vivid. Although rather chilly, it was a perfectly calm morning, and I was able to capture yet another version of a perfectly mirrored Teton Range.
Happy and Peaceful New Year to All!
Schwabacher’s Landing – Grand Teton National Park – Wyoming