Monthly Archives: August 2012

2012 Perseid Meteors from Cannon Beach

When Justin Balog sent out the call for a weekend of photographic fun I don’t think he realized the weekend that was chosen would also be the weekend for the peak of the Perseid meteor shower, but fortunately for all of us on the trip, it was the peak and being on a beach on the Pacific Ocean was a very cool place to see them from.

I actually have 5 or 6 shots with meteors in them, but this one is by far the brightest of the group, the rest I don’t recall seeing with my naked eye when shooting, and some of the more spectacular ones I did see were at times when the camera was pointed in a different direction.  When all is said and done though, it is far more amazing to simply watch the light show with your own eyes than to later view a streak of light in an image, but that image really does help keep the memory of the evening alive.

Posted in Photography

A really famous tree – Tree of Life

If you follow Dave Wilson, Jim Nix or Justin Balog you have seen images of this tree already. Even if you don’t follow these fine gentlemen, you have probably seen images of this tree already, it is pretty famous and possibly one of the most photographed trees in the world, google “Tree of Life” and see what I mean.  Ironically, every image you see of this tree makes it look like this massive, towering tree, when in reality it is only about 4 feet tall and you need to get very low to shoot it.

I decided to take a little different approach to shooting this already heavily photographed tree, did you google it like I asked above?, and decided to shoot it in IR and process it as a black and white image.  I will be honest, even though I do like this shot, I do plan on heading back to the Portland Japanese Gardens this fall and shoot this tree again when it is in full fall color.

Posted in IR photography

Palouse Falls

Palouse Falls

Palouse Falls

Palouse Falls is one of those amazing places that is sort of out in the middle of nowhere.  I grew up relatively close to the falls, and even though we did visit them once or twice, it was just far enough away that there were always more convenient destinations for summer day trips.

I took a couple days off of work recently to head over to the Palouse region to visit family and friends.  I also wanted to get a little photography in at both the falls and at Steptoe Butte.  I left the house on a Wednesday afternoon and as long as traffic was on my side I would make it to the falls with plenty of time to shoot.  Sadly, traffic was not entirely my friends, but I did make it there with about 20 minutes of shooting time left.  I had a few shots planned out but sadly didn’t have the time needed to hike to those vantage points so I ended up shooting from the “regular” observation points.

I plan on getting back to the falls soon, with enough time to get the shots I have pre-visualized, but until then I hope you enjoy this image that I made in sort of a hurry. :-)

Posted in Photography

Raining Fire – Fun With Steel Wool

Fire On The Beach

Spinning steel wool on Cannon Beach on the Oregon Coast

More Fire On The Beach

During all of the planning emails for The Great Pacific Northwest Photo Extravaganza the discussion obviously turned to what gear the guys who were travelling would bring.  Since I was driving, I was pretty much wide open as to what I could take, and of course took a ton more stuff than I needed, but I mentioned in the email thread that I would bring my stuff for spinning steel wool.  I was actually a little surprised at the very positive response I got for that.

Our plan was to shoot Cannon Beach / Haystack Rock for sunset and then stick around until well after dark to shoot stars and the Perseid meteor shower, but that leaves a bit of time between those two events when there is still a good deal of light in the sky, but dark enough that you can start to get some nice long exposures.  Throw a beach and a very photogenic rock into the mix and you have the perfect storm for spinning steel wool.

I don’t think I am going too far out on a limb by saying that this was one of the many highlights of an incredible weekend of photography with a great group of guys.

Posted in Photography

Starry Night at Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach Stars

Back in May my online photog friend Justin Balog sent out an email to members of his online photography circles.  He asked if people would be interested in a photo outing to the Pacific Northwest in the late summer.  After what seemed like countless emails back and forth, everything was in place and plans were put in motion.

This last weekend Dave Wilson, Jim Nix, Jacob Lucas and myself joined Justin for an epic weekend of photography.  We shot at the Japanese Gardens, the Portland Skyline, the Cannon Beach area, and the Columbia River Gorge.  We even managed to sneak in some great beer and a visit to the house made famous in the movie The Goonies.

As you can imagine, I have TONS of images from the weekend and fodder for the blog for a long time to come, but I am starting things off with an image made late at night on Cannon Beach looking north to Haystack Rock.  We had been out shooting all day and our plans were to be at Haystack Rock just prior to sunset.  While at Cannon Beach we shot the sunset, had a blast with spinning steel wool and did some long exposure night shooting while enjoying the Perseid meteor shower.  This image was from the very end of the night after the sun had long since set.  To the naked eye Haystack Rock was barely visible but with an ISO of 3200, a wide open lens and a 30 second exposure, it shows up nicely.  Throw in a little fog rolling off the land towards the ocean and you end up with the above.  I love the contrasts between the stars at the top left and the bright lights of the beach on the lower right.  The fog makes for a nice element between the two.

As I said, I have a ton of images from the weekend that will be posted here, but even if I hadn’t gotten a single keeper, it was an amazing weekend and I can now say that those online photog friends of mine are now real life, face to face friends.

Posted in Photography