Tower Butte at Dawn

Tower Butte at Dawn
Tower Butte at Dawn by I Nancy, on Flickr

I think it is going to take me some time to complete my edits from my trip to Utah and each time I dip back into the well, something else surprises me.

On the morning after The Wave, I opened my eyes just before dawn and saw this incredible scene begin to unfold. While the others stayed at the Quality Inn, Chick and I had ended up at the Lake Powell Resort with a lake facing view. At first I closed my eyes again, then a voice in my little brain said: “You came all this way and here is this beautiful sunrise unfolding, get up and get your tripod out and take some pictures”. And so I did.

I took several images over the course of the 20 minutes or so that it took the sun to rise. I kind of knew that the early pictures were just tests and unconsciously I used them to tweak the composition and exposure. With the bright light coming, I knew I wanted to take some brackets that I could layer together later. A very dark exposure for the sun and brighter exposures for the sky and lake. This is a 3 shot bracket with the sun brought back in from the darkest image. I like the subtle star at f/11 and I am glad I didn’t use anything smaller. The textures on the lake were brought in with the HDR software as well as the subtle layers (perhaps not visible in the small image here) on the buttes in silhouette. The heavy sky was created by smoke from a fire in the Salt Lake region. It provided just the ceiling this sunrise needed to reflect all of its glory.

At the Edge

At the Edge
At the Edge by I Nancy, on Flickr

I’ve heard many photographers say that it takes a few weeks to get perspective on their photos after a trip. This is the case with this image of Horseshoe Bend, just south of Page Arizona. The photography at this spot is very predictable and the more traditional view has been taken by many people. While I was there, I remember thinking, “What shall I do that is different”? This image wasn’t one of those that stood out as something I needed to look at when I got back, but today, a few weeks after the trip, it captured my fancy. It  struck me for how different a take it was on the tried and true. You still see the big plateau and the mini-rock slide. You don’t see the 1000 foot drop, but instead the foreground rocks drawing you into the image.

I’m glad I found it.

Slot Canyon Abstracts #1

Slot Canyon Abstracts
Slot Canyon Abstracts by I Nancy, on Flickr

The Six Utah Trekkers returned on Monday after just over a week in various parts of Utah and just over the boarder into Arizona – Jerry Koenig, Connie Wade, Mike Sugar, Suzanne Tanaka, Chick Lehrer (well, he’s not a photographer) and myself. Here are some of my first images off the press.

This image was taken in the Lower Antelope Canyon just outside of Page Arizona. The canyon was just incredible and at almost every step there was another incredible view. I shot mostly using 3-exposure bracketing to manage both the highlights and the shadows. This one is a subtle HDR mix. I particularly like all the striations on the rock in this section of the canyon.