The joy of photography: Telling a story and evoking emotion

Greetings everyone! Sincere apologies for the lengthy span between blog posts. Between crazy weather conditions that preclude getting out where I want to do some image making (in a safe manner), a brief period of time where I was not feeling great and just allowing life to get in the way, I have not been out very much the last couple of months.

This past week, I was contacted on Instagram by someone who had liked a sunrise image I created last summer while up in Crested Butte. The image was titled “A Crested Butte Sunrise.” I had been on-location since about 1:30am, doing some night sky photography. As astro twilight and nautical twilight passed, civil twilight approached and the light was starting to show a lot of potential for sunrise!

The location is on Trail 403, about 3/4 of a mile from the trailhead at the summit of Washington Gulch Road (CR-811). Elaina & I enjoy this trail and have passed a particular landmark along the trail that was the main focal point of the sunrise shot. A two seat bench…”Bill’s Bench” to be specific.

Bill’s Bench - Front view

Bill’s Bench - Front view

Anyway…(rabbit trail. lol)

Morning twilight came and the light and character-giving clouds were slowly rolling in. There was little doubt in my mind that I was in for a treat; I could feel the energy and the emotion unfold. I took a short break, just relaxing in one of the two seats and waited for sunrise time to arrive.

When it was time, I got busy making sure my composition was set and everything would be ready for just the right moment to capture a gorgeous sunrise image.

A Crested Butte Sunrise

A Crested Butte Sunrise

The light, the clouds, the setting, the emotion that the scene presented, was absolutely spectacular!

After finishing up the sunrise shooting, I packed up my gear and trekked back to my 4Runner, so I could head down to Crested Butte and get some coffee at Camp4Coffee, make some breakfast before heading out to shoot wildflower images.

While in town, I did a quick edit of the image (yeah, I am that much of a nerd. Kept my laptop in the 4Runner, so I could edit the image(s) and post one or two) and posted it up to Instagram

A few months ago, my image was seen by the son of the person the bench is named after, but he had forgotten to DM me then. At any rate, he did DM me this past week and told me that he and his family had put the bench up as a memorial to his Dad, who passed away in 1999. He thanked me for sharing that sunrise picture as the bench was put in that location just for the purposes of taking in those crazy Crested Butte sunrises and the magnificent views that are seen.

That morning, from ~1:30am to a short while past sunrise, was so amazing! Knowing that my photography had evoked just the right emotion from people whom the bench and those views truly did mean everything, was a complete joy for me. As a photographer, our main job is to tell a story. I think this time, though, the story was told to me before I even knew what the story was to be told.

One thing I can be certain of is that my passion for the great outdoors, for photography and for telling a story with my images has been bolstered quite a bit my the events of this contact!

2018-2019 Glendale Glitters

Glendale Arizona puts on quite a show of lights over the holiday season. The 11th & 12th of January are the last two days of the 2018-2019 Glendale Glitters display, with 1.6 million LED lights and much more.

My Mom suggested that we check it out on Friday evening, since Saturday was going to be total chaos there, with everyone in the Phoenix metro wanting to be there for the last night of the display (bands, hot air balloons, vendors and such).

For a Friday evening, we were pleasantly surprised to find that only a handful of people were walking around looking at the light display.

Street photography is not a style that we do very often, but this is one of those times when you have to step outside of your comfort zone. I did infuse a little of my own style for a couple of the images, doing some “Intentional Camera Movement” just to see what it would look like. I also cleaned up a couple up a few of the images to remove waste bins that were a little overbearing within the image, using the new content-aware fill enhancement within Photoshop CC 2019.

Glendale Lights

Glendale Lights

Red Canopy

Red Canopy

Long Exposure ICM

Long Exposure ICM

Long Movement Lights

Long Movement Lights

Red Meet Blue

Red Meet Blue

Red Canopy

Red Canopy

Leaning Palms

Leaning Palms

Detail in the Tree

Detail in the Tree

A Library of Color

A Library of Color

Glitter Promenade

Glitter Promenade

Electric Snowflake

Electric Snowflake