star burst

Mesa Arch

Tomorrow we start our workshop in The Grand Teton National Park, but we arrived a few days early to visit a few other places before the workshop begins.

One of the places we wanted to visit was Mesa Arch in Cayonlands National Park.  It is a very iconic arch and probably the most photographed thing in the park.  It is located in what is called The Island in The Sky district of the park.  It is very easy to get to as it is only about 1/4 mile from the parking area along a well maintained trail, which is probably why we were soon joined by about 100 of our closest friends for the sunrise shoot, most of them iPad shooters, however.

Just to the other side of the arch is a 1200 foot drop into Buck Canyon. This creates a "bowl" and what happens is when the sun rises and reflects off of that "bowl" it lights the underside of Mesa Arch up glowing red...more of those shots to come ;)

This shot was taken after I got some sunrise images from the "iconic" few just to the left of where I am standing now.  Some of the crowd started to disperse and I tried a few quick compositions before wrapping up and leaving.   I am always a sucker for a sun star, so I tried it from a few different angles.  This was one of my favorites, although there were many from this particular morning.

Aperture Priority, F/11, ISO 100, 1/40th second shutter speed, 15mm

This image was shot using a Canon 5D Mk III and Tamron 15-30mm Lens.  This setup was all mounted on my Sirui N-3204X Tripod and K-30 Ballhead.

A Two Mile Sunrise

There is a spot here in Apalachicola that is great to photograph for sunrise and sunset.  It is called Two Mile.  It got it's name because it is 2 miles from the traffic light in town.  Clever, right?  It's hard to give people directions there and tell them it's name without them thinking you are just a wise guy.

Here is a sunrise shot that I took there the other morning.  While there were no clouds to make the sky very interesting, using more of the foreground and a small Aperture, like F/22, gave me a nice starburst on the sun.

ISO 125, 15mm, F/22 @ 1/2 second

I was able to capture this image using the Tamron 15-30mm Lens that I had borrowed from my teaching partner, David Akoubian.  I also had to borrow his Nikon to E mount adapter.  Don't worry though, I had my own camera...the Sony A7Rii.  All mounted a top a fancy new tripod I am trying out, the Sirui W-2204.  It is a waterproof tripod, so it's certainly working out great while out here shooting along the coast!

Snake River Overlook

Here's another quick shot from our time out in Grand Teton National Park.  This is from the Snake River Overlook.  Yes, the same place Ansel Adams took his famous image.  You, of course, aren't able to capture the exact image as Ansel did due to 70 years of tree and vegetation growth.  

We visited this place for sunset.  We were hoping when the sun dropped behind the mountains the reflections would create the god fingers from the bottom of the mountain up.  This didn't pan out for us...there must've been some clouds on the back side of the mountains blocking the reflection.  I did manage to shoot this image with the sun burst before the sun dipped behind the mountains, though.  

This was taken with the Tamron 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Macro Lens.  It really is an incredible travel lens designed for crop sensor cameras.  I found myself using this lens more than I had ever anticipated on this trip!

This was shot at 18mm, F/16, ISO 100 and 1/40th second.