Through the soft roads of Zion

The Team’s in Town!

I’m excited to have at least some of the Stuck in Customs team visiting Queenstown this week! I wish we could get everyone out here. We’re preparing for the workshop this week, which will be absolutely amazing. The weather should be incredible, and we continually get a great group of people that come to these things.

Daily Photo – Through the soft roads of Zion

I love the roads in Zion! I know this is a strange thing to say about them, but whenever I see this exact color and texture of roads, they feel so soft and rubbery. Even the way they grip the car feels different. And, naturally, they look so good hyper-colored in the photos!

Through the soft roads of Zion

Through the soft roads of Zion

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 19, 2013 at 12:28am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1000
  • Aperture4.5
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length12.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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The Goats Who Stare at Men

Has anyone seen “Her”?

What did you think about it?

Daily Photo – The Goats Who Stare at Men

I came to this wonderful, alien hillside one evening to take sunset photos. The lines and the clouds and everything lined up, and I thought it would be a perfect evening.

So after I took the photos, I laid back on this slope to take a little nap and wait for the stars. I took off my glasses and kind of set them behind me. I closed my eyes for a bit, and when I opened them up, there was a GOAT STARING DOWN AT ME. I just about levitated off the ground a few inches in shock while the goat clicked away. I flailed around and my glasses went skidding down the hill, glass side down. It was darker than that goat's eye sockets and I couldn't find them for five minutes. I finally found them, and there are still, to this day, a thousand tiny little scratches on them. It drives me nuts… anyway, I got my camera and got the heck out of there.

The Goats Who Stare at Men

The Goats Who Stare at Men

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 19, 2013 at 2:31am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time0.5
  • Aperture9
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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The Wolf Howling at the Sky

Lighting Decisions

When I process a photo like this, I usually go through a bit of a decision matrix about lighting. Since I’m combining multiple shots, I can choose to have everything equally lit, or go with a full-on silhouette. Such power! Haha… sometimes all the decisions can make you seize up a little bit, which is not a good thing. I try not to get caught up in the decision and just try different things and let it flow. In this case, I went with mostly a silhouette, but I did a bit of lighting in the foreground. I think it adds a nice layer right there in front of you.

Daily Photo – The Wolf Howling at the Sky

The shapes in Monument Valley are right out of all the westerns you watched when you were a kid. So, when I was there for the first time it was a bit surreal. Now, I know many readers here have been there several times and they are experts at this area… but it was all fresh and new to me! As long as there are good clouds, I think it is relatively easy to get a good shot here! Sort of a lay-up, I think! Some photos you have to work really really hard for… and those are fine… but I also like a few of these that make themselves a bit easier.

Monument Valley

The Wolf Howling at the Sky

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 22, 2013 at 12:40pm
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/60
  • Aperture5.6
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length55.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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Utah Summerstorm

Non-Texas Storms

I never get those big scary Texas late summer storms any more. The huge mountains here all around me break up the clouds a bit so they never have a chance to get too crazy. There is all kinds of fast-changing weather here though… cold storms in the morning that open up to 75 degree days in the afternoon. Bright blue sunny mornings that turn into bitter icy evenings… it all happens here!

Daily Photo – Utah Summerstorm

There are many wide-open areas across Utah after you emerge from tight canyons. It changes very quickly, and then it also reminds you how quick the weather can change. Whenever you can see a huge storm in the distance moving this way and that, everything feels a bit surreal. It's not clear if the storm coming your way or not, although, secretly, I think everyone wishes it really is. A big storm is kinda fun, eh? :)

Summerstorm in Utah

Utah Summerstorm

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 19, 2013 at 7:50pm
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1000
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length12.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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Walking Along the Edge of Utah

Renting RVs

I feel like I’ve accidentally become kind of an expert in renting RVs for photo adventures! I never thought I’d be one of those RV-kinda-guys, and I don’t really see myself like that yet. But I guess I’m moving a bit in that direction. I must admit that it is very very nice to have a ton of space to hold all my camera gear and a fridge full of goodies always at the ready!

Daily Photo – Walking Along the Edge of Utah

Bryce Canyon is an unbelievable place. The drive is a bit daunting to get here, and here is a tiny tip that I hope doesn't kill you upon arrival.

Like most National Parks, there are many places to park and then walk up to a railing for some view spots. But if you just walk around the end a bit, you can get even more amazing shots. Note you don't have to go up to the very edge, and I don't recommend that. I never do that. I usually hang back a little or make sure there is actually a gentle slope or something along these lines. Nothing too scary! But, anyway, don't be afraid to do a little bit of scouting. All the fences make it seem like you're surely gonna die if you don't stay beside them, but that's not true if you're smart and have your head screwed on straight!

Walking Along the Edge of Utah

Walking Along the Edge of Utah

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 20, 2013 at 2:15am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4
  • Aperture10
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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