Monthly Archives: July 2013

16th annual Tango By The Fountain

One of the events in downtown Olympia that I have been looking forward to attending since we moved here in April of 2012 is the annual Tango By The Fountain.  We missed it last year when I was over on the Palouse and in northern Idaho visiting friends and family, but we did make it this year, and even though I was told that it was not nearly as well attended this year, I still thought it was a lot of fun to photograph.

Olympia has one of those flat concrete slabs that also happens to be a fountain with flush mounted water jets.  During the summer months it is a very popular place for kids to play in the water to keep cool.  For this one night a year it also becomes a dance floor for local dancers.  Some dancers simply dance around the edges while other venture right into the heart of the fountain.

I had a lot of fun meeting up with a lot of local photographers to shoot this annual event and really look forward to doing it again next year.  I hope you enjoy the images I posted here and as always please click on any of them to see larger versions.


Posted in Photography

Sunset Lightning

I absolutely love capturing lightning strikes with the Arizona sunset.  The bright orange sky really imparts amazing colors into the lightning strike if you have things lined up properly, there is something uniquely Arizona in a sunset lightning strike.  Even though I didn’t get nearly as much lightning imagery from recent storm chasing trip to Arizona, I am absolutely thrilled with the ones that I did get, this is one of those.

Having sat the 2012 season out, I can’t begin to say how excited I was to get back to Arizona and chase this year’s monsoon.  What a lot of people might not know though is that I really am something of a loner when it comes to chasing.  As much as I do enjoy shooting with my fellow weather photographers, I truly cherish the times that I am out by myself.  For a number of years now a real challenge for me has been finding moments of solitude.  Even with I am by myself I typically let the stresses of work and everyday life intrude in that time, but when I am storm chasing I seem to be able to focus entirely on what I am doing, for those hours that I am out, nothing else intrudes and there is something very special about that.

I hope that you enjoy this image.  As always I hope that you will click on it to view a larger version in my weather gallery.  I also want to remind everyone that most of my images are available as fine art prints or for licensing for publication.  I don’t currently have an online shopping cart, that will be coming back down the road, but please feel free to use the contact link above for both print orders or to find out about licensing.

Posted in StormChasing

On the road to the Grand Canyon

I have always been a sucker for storm shots along a lonely highway even of the highway isn’t really all that lonely.  This stretch of highway is actually the route to Grand Canyon National Park from Cameron, AZ, it is a very heavily traveled highway.  When Bryan Snider and myself were storm chasing up at the Grand Canyon we just had to stop along the highway as I really wanted to grab this shot.

The biggest challenge of this show was actually watching out for each other as we stood in the highway and calling out “car” for each other.

Posted in StormChasing

Cloud to ground

As much as I love storm chasing and weather in general, it really is the cloud to ground lightning that keeps me doing it year after year.  To me there is something magical about a bolt of lightning hitting the ground.  I storm chase so that I can experience that and getting images of it is just a really good bonus.

My week long trip to Arizona storm chasing was a lot of fun, but when it comes to the lightning imagery department it was somewhat disappointing.  I only got images of lightning that I am happy with a couple different nights.  This image was actually the first one I captured that I knew would be something that I would want to share.

I made this from the Paseo Vista recreational area in Chandler, AZ, the same place I made my haboob time lapse back on July 5th of 2011.  I lived just a few miles north of Paseo Vista when I lived in Chandler.  For those that don’t know, Paseo Vista is a reclaimed landfill that has been turned into a park.  The great thing about the area is that they have built it up into a small hill which is about the only elevated vantage point in the area.  The lightning that I was shooting from there, including the strike in this image, was actually a lot further away from me than I would normally like, but I was very interested in the cloud structure above it, I have very few lightning images where I can see the top of the storm that produced the strike.

I have a good deal more to share from the Arizona trip but only a few more lightning images, as I said, the trip was a little disappointing when it came to photographing lightning.

Posted in StormChasing

Sunset at the Grand Canyon

During my work / storm chasing trip to Arizona last week I made a trip to the Grand Canyon with my friend Bryan Snider.  I really wanted to capture some lightning over the canyon on that trip, but that wasn’t meant to happen, I had to settle for this little sunset instead. :-)  To tell the truth, I think this was a pretty decent compromise.

Bryan and I had spent the entire day at many of the vantage points along the south rim of the canyon without really getting any of the weather that we had hoped for and decided to stake out a spot and see how the sunset would treat us.  As we were there shooting more and more people started arriving at the canyon for the exact same reason, to enjoy the sunset.  As the sunset started developing the tonal separation and sun breaking through the canyon became breath taking, I had literally never seen anything quite like it before.

I was very tempted to edit it on my laptop and post it last week when I captured it, but I got very busy storm chasing the rest of the trip and decided that I wanted to be able to give it the time needed to give it as much attention as I thought it would deserve.  On a side note, this was pretty much 100% in camera and only had somewhat minor processing done in Adobe Lightroom 5.

Posted in Photography