Tag Archives: canyon

Happy Earth Day 2020!

Autumn Color

Maine in the autumn is one of the most beautiful places to visit for the colors. This particular shot epitomizes what you can see (within and outside of Acadia National Park, which is why I was in Maine in the first place). During the fall, you’ll see tall trees with variagated greens, oranges, yellows and reds, and marshlands with thin ribbons of water weaving its way through the golden grass.

John Ford Country

This image was captured in the Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park, in Utah. They don’t call it “canyonlands” for nothin’. It’s the “John Ford Country” you’ve imagined in Westerns: arid, deep, broad canyons and tall mesas, buttes, hoodoos and spires, all colored in different shades of red, yellow, pink and orange. The immensity of this place dwarfs the human figure.

Fire Hose From The Air

I’ve visited Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, on the Big Island of Hawaii, twice – once in 2014 and again in 2017. During the 2017 visit, I was with a small photo tour, and one of the highlights of the tour was to take an open-door helicopter ride over active volcanics in the park. In this image, I was flying over the “Fire Hose”, a stream of lava pouring from a lava tube directly into the Pacific Ocean. The land above this is cooled pahoehoe lava. Looks desolate on land, doesn’t it? Probably the way things looked when the earth was still shaping itself.

Sunset Over Wild Goose Island

Sunsets at the Wild Goose Island view area on St. Mary Lake in Glacier National Park in Montana are as lovely as sunrises, albeit a little more muted. The trees and forests and lower portions of the mountains become silhouetted while the lake reflects the saturated colors of the oncoming “Blue Hour” (which really lasts only a few minutes between sunset and darkness (or between darkness and sunrise).

Full Moon Over The Three Gossips

The next morning after New Year’s Day, I was up and at ‘em super-early, ready to catch the full moon in Arches National Park in Utah. Actually, I was trying to capture some star shots, but as you can see in this image, the moon outshone everything, creating enough light that I could see my own shadow on the park road as I stood in the freezing winter air with my tripod set up for a long exposure of the moon bathing the Three Gossips rock formation and the landscape below.

As I look back on my photos, I realize I have been to quite a few really cool spots in the U.S. and abroad. Each spot has a different ecosystem, and each ecosystem is fragile. While it sounds trite to write this on every Earth Day, we really should take stock of our environments, appreciate what we see out there in nature, and try to take better care of it – even if that just means we are picking up the trash along the trail and nothing else.

Happy Earth Day 2020!

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

 

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Filed under Arches National Park, Canon, Canon Lens, Canyonlands National Park, Earth Day, Glacier National Park MT, Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, Maine, National Parks, Photography, Travel

Summer Afternoon Monsoons Over The North Rim

North Rim Scenery On A Summer Afternoon

I’ve finished working on cleaning up and adding key words to all of the images in my Grand Canyon gallery on my website. Yay me! Actually, this is something I should have been doing years ago so potential customers could run decent searches on my photos. Now, it’s going to take months to give all my images keywords so potential customers can run searches. I’ve started cleaning up the Mount Rainier gallery … All 200+ photos in there. Hoo boy!

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

 

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Filed under Arizona, Canon, Canon Lens, Grand Canyon National Park, National Parks, North Rim, Photography, Seasons, summer, Travel

Sunrise Saturday

Sunrise Over Inspiration Point

Upper Inspiration Point, Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

No, I’m not in Bryce Canyon. I’m instead going through a few archived shots and using them to create HDR images.

For those of you who have never been to Bryce Canyon National Park, sunrises at Upper Inspiration Point are amazing. Actually, sunrises anywhere in this park are amazing. There’s Inspiration Point, and there’s *Upper* Inspiration Point, accessed via a very steep, but short hike on a very well-maintained trail a little further up along the Rim Trail from the regular Inspiration Point view area.

I used a single image and then copied it a couple of times, using different exposure settings. I then combined all those images into HDR. The reason for this is because I did not bracket my original shots (which I should probably do more often, for when I want to use HDR), and because I handheld the camera. The fence at Upper Inspiration Point is just a little too tall for me to stand on tiptoe with my tripod, trying to look through the viewfinder. There was a tall guy standing next to me with his tall tripod, and he didn’t have any problems. I did. So, instead, I handheld the camera and used the “burst method” of holding down on the shutter button for several clicks. I knew out of all those shots, at least one of them would be nice and sharp. The caveat with the burst method is that it takes up space on the memory cards, so I always bring lots of extras with me, in varying sizes of 16GB to 128GB.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

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Filed under 24-70mm f2.8L II, 5DS, Bryce Canyon National Park, Canon, Canon Lens, HDR, Landscape, National Parks, Photography, Seasons, summer, sunrise, Travel

Waiting For Sunrise In HDR

A North Rim Sunrise HDR

Waiting for sunrise on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

In an article I wrote for future publication in the National Parks Traveler, I mention HDR, what it is, and what it produces. I had to create an example, so I used the free download of Photomatix. I’ve used Photomatix before, pretty much with all the computers I’ve ever owned. Of course, I didn’t have it on this laptop I’m currently using, so I bought it and downloaded it in order to not have their watermark show up on the finished product. While I am not a huge fan of HDR, I will admit it can produce some very nice results, if the hand wielding the preset controls is judicious with the edits. Most of the time, though, I see more overdone HDR images than nice, naturalistic HDR images. Practice makes perfect, in everything including working with HDR, so I’ll be working on this aspect of photography a little more, hence today’s example.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

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Filed under 24-70mm f2.8L II, 5DSR, Arizona, Canon, Canon Lens, Grand Canyon National Park, HDR, National Parks, North Rim, Photography, Seasons, summer, sunrise, Travel

Capturing A Time-Lapse Video in A National Park

A Medium-Format Sunrise Over unset Point

Capturing sunrise along the rim trail, overlooking Bryce Amphitheater toward Sunset Point

The National Parks Traveler has published my May Photography in the National Parks column. During my Bryce Canyon National Park trip, I decided to try out a little bit of time-lapse video creation. This article shows you how you can capture your own, short, easy time-lapses using any camera: point-and-shoot, smartphone, or SLR.  To read the story, click on the photo above.

 

 

 

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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Equipment, National Parks Traveler, Photography, Time-Lapse, Travel

A Medium-Format Sunrise Over Sunset Point

A Medium-Format Sunrise Over unset Point

It was my last day in the park, and my plan for the day was to use no other camera except the Pentax 645z. I didn’t bring this camera along with me on my Zion trip (and wished I had, in retrospect), so I made a point to really use it fully for a couple of days during my Bryce Canyon stay. Medium format is awesome, but it takes a bit of getting used to the different aspect ratio. To me, medium format photos are a bit “boxier” than SLR photos. However, medium format photos are more in keeping with magazine sizes (ahem).

As for that morning, it was superb. There were clouds to add a little texture to the sky, but not enough to hide the sun, which bathed the landscape in a saturated golden-orange glow. It was pretty gusty and downright cold, but I wore warm clothing. I also enjoyed a long chat with a fellow photographer who talked to me about what she did and the Sony mirrorless cameras she used.

The interesting thing about photographing in Bryce Canyon NP is that the formations (hoodoos, spires, towers, walls, arches, windows, etc.) are amazing, no matter what kind of light or weather is out there. The colors, though, are always somewhat different. In overcast weather, the colors of the landscape tend to be saturated but muted beige and pinkish-salmon with a bit of a blue cast. In direct sunlight during midday, the colors are definitely a deep, almost blinding, orange-gold and white-beige. When the morning or evening sunlight hits the landscape, the colors are saturated gold, red, orange, and absolutely glowing.

I sure do miss this place, right now.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Equipment, Geology, HD PENTAX-DA645 28-45mm f/4.5 ED AW SR Lens, National Parks, Pentax 645z, Pentax Lens, Photography, sunrise, Travel

Capturing Color, Pattern and Texture in your Images

Colors Textures And Layers

Layers of sunset colors, patterns and textures at Sunset Point in Bryce National Park, Utah

Back in April, the National Parks Traveler published my latest photography article, which dealt with finding color, pattern and texture in your national park images.  In the article, I described several techniques I always use when highlighting one or all three of these properties in my photos.  If you want to know more about those techniques, click on the photo above to be taken to the article.

Note:  The image above was captured with a Canon 5DSR and 24-70mm f2.8 lens at Sunset Point this past April, 2018

 

 

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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Canon, National Parks Traveler, Parks, Photography, Travel