The Rainbow After the Storm

Taking photos of Rainbows

I’ve taken a few of these in my life… mostly out of luck! But, I wondered about your experiences with rainbows. Do you get many photos? What is your favorite lens to use to capture the whole thing? In the one below, I used a Nikon 14-24 on a full frame body (the D3X).

Daily Photo – The Rainbow After the Storm

In the afternoons in Montana, sometimes a summer storm would come rolling through the Rockies. I think everyone loves a good storm, mostly because it changes the mood. An unexpected mood change always adds a bit of spice to the day, don’t you think? And, since these afternoon storms come and go, the sun comes back out again, giving us the opportunity for rainbow shots.

All that’s missing from this one is a unicorn. This is one reason I am excited about genetic engineering. I think that some odd-ball researcher is going to make a real unicorn one day… and everyone (well, MOST everyone) will love it. Hey future-unicorn-genetic-engineer, please contact me after you successfully bring one of these to term so I can take the first photo. That would be very cool.

HDR Photo

  • casusan

    Awesome capture Trey – beautiful – yes, a unicorn would be perfect!

  • Hey Trey, capturing images with rainbows seems to pure luck for me. I was fortunate enough to witness the late afternoon sun and a light rain shower do its thing in the far south east of Western Australia. The place is Esperance. Untouched natural wilderness.
    If you have a moment have a glance at
    Your images are superb and inspirational, Im traveling to the northern hemisphere next year, I may catch up at a workshop
    Cheers Adrian Wayte

  • A leprechaun would also be very cool addition to this shot!

    I’ve never actually deliberately gone out to photograph a rainbow and would probably fail miserably if i did. Have you ever done any star-trail work at night? I think that would be cool integrated with your HDR work. I’ll probably try to do some when there are clear skies over the coming months.

  • Nice one. You just wait for those unicorns and they will come. Thousands of them en masse, I’m sure!

  • I managed to get a nice photo af a Rainbow due to pure luck of being in the right place at the right time, can see it here

    Although i would now like to revisit it and do some further editing now my knowledge has increaed slighty thanks to your helpfull ebooks!

  • Nicely processed, i especially like that vignette you added. You’re right, unicorn would fit perfectly, i can totally see it! 🙂

  • Only had to go to the Northwest Territories to get it!

    But I’ve caught a couple more too!

  • Jeff Hentosz

    If I remember my unicorn lore correctly, you can’t photograph one unless you’re a virgin. Sorry, dude!

  • Seems like you can almost reached the right side of that rainbow. Someday, someone’s going to bend this law and become filthy rich.

  • Sergio García

    Hi Trey, you’re crazy but I love your work even with no unicorns on it, ha ha.

  • Gail in Montana

    LOL, Trey, a unicorn would be nice. There is a member of the deer family in Africa, I think, with just one horn. I’m sorry I can’t remember the name of it. Might even be in the Mideast or Asia. Back to the rainbow. I’m glad you captured this one in my state, at the southern edge. Just beautiful. I’ll have to put this one in facebook!! I love rainbows, and we have taken several pictures, even some double rainbows. We even had one when we were a Hegben Lake near Yellowstone. I could only get one end of it, the rest was in the clouds. I do have that in our Yellowstone Trip album in facebook.
    Back to your photo of the day, one of my favorites, which are growing in number. We will be cruising soon, but will have the laptop, think I told you that already, lol. Glad I will be able to keep up on your daily posts!! Have a great weekend. God bless.

  • To capture a whole rainbow I usually have to take multiple photos and paste them together carefully by hand. Just thinking about it really makes me want to go get a better, wide-angled lens.
    NEK Photography Blog

  • Jim

    Great shot Trey. Seems you almost have to use a wide angle or do a lot of stitching to capture the full width of a rainbow. I used a 12-24 on a D300. Small touch of HDR and a little Lucis to give the clouds some definition. Isn’t God’s promise amazing.

  • Trey, I caught a full-on double rainbow in Laupahoehoe Hawaii. Although I wasn’t high and there were no crying hippies anywhere.

    I am curious to know if you had to do a TON of post processing like I did. The rainbow cast this ugly, yellowy haze underneath it that looked like smog or something. I had to get pretty creative with masking to remove it because it took up the entire under side of the rainbow.

  • I’ve caught a few and they’re mostly luck as well..this one is by far the most impressive one I’ve witnessed with my own eyes (and happened to have a camera):

  • kc

    Absolutely breathtaking!!!! Thank you so much for sharing.

  • Thanks everyone – glad you like this one! 🙂

  • Super awesome shot Trey… I love the depth of the image. The dark clouds in the background adds an amazing amount of drama to the image. Excellent work as always!

  • Harmon Jones

    Hi Trey!

    Great picture… wish i was there…

    love coming back every day to look at you daylies!

  • rattlesnakewillie

    Nice work! The unicorn your looking for is here.,2933,365629,00.html

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