Category Archives: Mountains

Estes Park and RMNP

This is a small park area along the river.

This is a small park area along the river.

I decided to make a drive up to Estes Park yesterday. My intent was to grab a coffee and sit along the river to read and write. The thought crossed my mind to maybe have lunch before coming back. I ended up driving up to Trail Ridge Road. What a glorious day to make that drive. Last Fall Estes Park had a flood come through the town and wiped out most of it. Here are a few images. The city is built along the banks for the Big Thompson River and has been a tourist attraction for years. I am amazed at how well it looked. Lunch was probably the best turkey/bacon wrap with a pesto sauce to die for. Continue reading »

Pastel Colors

Sunrise on the Colorado Front Range

Sunrise on the Colorado Front Range

This past Saturday morning I rose before sunrise and drove out to a favorite location to enjoy the morning sunrise. I like this location for several reasons. There are some isolated trees in a farmers field that I enjoy working into some images. There are two wetland/marshes where I can find plenty of red-winged blackbirds and yellow headed blackbirds feeding on insects during the early summer mornings and evenings. On this particular morning I had walked through an open fence and into the farmers field about 20 feet, setup my tripod low the the ground and started pressing the shutter. The sun was just starting to crest the horizon when I heard a vehicle stop just behind my car. As I stood up I noticed it was a police car. I grabbed the camera and tripod and walked over to meet him. He was friendly and just checking on my car which was parked off the road and gave me a warning that I was on private property. I quickly went back to my previous location in time to shoot the sunrise. It is always good for us to turn around and look to the west just as the sun begins to rise as the sky can present us with beautiful pastel colors.

Same Sunset, but Different

Sunset at Arapahoe Bend Nature Area

This is almost the same image as the one I posted a few days ago, but different, and to me, much more realistic of what I saw. The difference is one is an HDR composite of five images while this one is a composite of three images (All one stop differences). In all honesty I was not comfortable posting the previous image because it was not what I saw and that halo around the sun was awful. Yet, I worked on that HDR image as if there was something I was destined to pull out of it. Never happened. I am much more pleased with this one. So, I’m still learning about the positive and negative aspects of HDR. It intrigues me so I will see what creativity can come from it. Continue reading »

My Kind of Morning

Dandelions

I saw this group of dandelions along the bike bath at Rolland Moore Park yesterday and just had to stop and take a photo. I find it strange how some people call them weeds and others don’t. I actually rode on a part of the bike trail I had never been on before. At the far west end the trail is the Spring Canyon Community Park. Wow, was I surprised at it’s size and beauty. It is nestled up against the foothills so the view is awesome. I found a picnic table situated among a butterfly garden and journaled for a while. I loved listening to a couple of meadow larks calling to each other. I think this will be a place I come to visit more often. Anyway it was my kind of morning. Continue reading »

Front Range Sunset

Front Range Sunset

After two days of snow and an accumulation of 7-14 inches, depending on where you were in the city of Fort Collins, we had clear skies and sunshine. It was 6 degrees yesterday when I crawled out of bed at 6:00 am. The high temperatures never rose above freezing. But with the warm Colorado sunshine the snow quickly melts as natures prepares for the next snowfall. We are expecting 30% chance of snow again today.

As the above image shows most of my images are not of iconic or exotic places. They are taken close to home. I try to get out and explore whats’ near and always coming across new places, at least to me. I wander through the nature areas, local parks and the Old Town area of Fort Collins. If I have my camera with me I know there is an image to be made. Anyway here is the Colorado Front Range just after sunset last night. It was 18 when I took this shot. I must admit, as I walked back to the car I was wishing I was shooting a sunset in Key West. Maybe someday.

And That’s Your Picture

Foothills Parkway, Great Smoky Mountains

“As the saying goes, we see in terms of our education. We look at the world and see what we have learned to believe is there. We have been conditioned to expect. And indeed it is socially useful that we agree on the function of objects. But, as photographers, we must learn to relax our beliefs. Move on objects with your eye straight on, to the left, around on the right. Watch them grow large as you approach, group and regroup as you shift your position. Relationships gradually emerge and sometimes assert themeselves with finality. And that’s your picture.” - Aaron Siskind, The Art of Photography

It can be difficult to find new perspectives when capturing images from those popular locations people flock to like this image taken on the Foothills Parkway in the Smoky Mountains. People will sometimes be elbow to elbow as the sun begins to rise. The morning this image was taken a photography workshop was in progress so we had about a dozen photographers with tripods. So I moved away from the crowd looking for another angle and used a Nikon 80-400mm lens to bring the scene in closer and remove distracting objects. This is my picture.

Not sure if it was that evening or the next that I dropped and destroyed that lens. Still makes my stomach turn. :-(

Don’t Waste the Moments

Summer Senset

“You’ve got a handful of years to do your work, don’t you dare waste those moments whining instead of creating something amazing.” David Duchemin

Just few words about the above quote. Some statements or quotes will mean nothing while some are essential moments, shaking the sandy foundation we are standing on.

I’ve been passionately pursuing images for the past ten years. Prior to that I shot to record family events such as birthdays, vacations and an occasional flower. Admittedly, at one time I envisioned living a career as a photographer, raking in the money, but let that fall to the wayside as I focused my attention on raising a family and pursuing a career in engineering. I have no regrets there as I needed to be on that path.

I listened to those voices within telling me I was not good enough or worse yet I would never be good enough to make it as a photographer. To me photography as a career was for a select few with talent I did not have. I definitely did not look at photography as a creative outlet for me. And, I do not remember having a positive voice around me to offer support and encouragement. These dreams were kept buried within me, suppressed. The world around me suggested I work for a corporation to make sure I had medical benefits, put in 40 hours a week, put away 10% in a 401k and take my 2-3 weeks vacation each year. I now see photography as a work, my work, a way to express my creativity and has taught me about life, how to see it and be present to it. So, before the final sunset in this life I hope to inspire myself and others to pursue dreams and discover more dreams. We don’t need to wast the moments.