Sunday, March 29, 2009

Moab images

Finally getting around to posting images from the Moab trip that I went on with the Bemidji State OPC. Over all it was a decent trip, kind of hard not to have fun in a place like Moab. Climbing within minutes of town,  the entrance to Arches National Park is in town, world class mountain biking is all over the place, there were cave drawings in our campsite and I got to shoot photos of it.
I did have a couple of rough night though, on the first night camping I got a leak in my sleeping pad but it didn't really get bad till the second night. Which has to be the single worst night I have ever spent in a tent. The pad was flat in about 45 minutes and I don't have any insulation in the bottom of my bag so it got damn cold. But the pictures made it all worth wild!

This is somewhere in Colorado when we stopped for gas.

Cave drawings in the parking lot of our campground. 

Moonrise from camp.
Dave trying to tame the stove to make dinner.

Casey playing guitar in camp.

Another moon shot from camp. This one though I broke out the 10.5mm fisheye to get the shot.

Of course I had to break out the strobes to play around a little bit. I had one camera left zoomed to 105mm and pointed at the bike, then there was a second SB-800 sitting in the mouth of the tent to light me and the inside of the tent.
Rachel and Adam during the day of mountain biking. For this one I used my 12-24 mm Nikon at 12 mm.

This is one of my favorite shots from the trip, its the Morning Glory Arch. I used the fisheye again and took two different exposures, one for the highlight and the other for the shadow and then combined them in photoshop. I am really getting to like this whole HDR thing. I was thinking about HDR (high dynamic range) yesterday, about how this is nothing new. HDR is basically the same thing as Ansel Adams' Zone System only much easier. Don't get me wrong you still have to pre-visualize what you want. But instead of having to precisely meter, then process the film to either tame or punch up the contrast and then spent hours in the darkroom dodging and burning to get the final result, now you just bracket, slap everything together in Photoshop and  your done. There is a little more to it then that but now is not the time to get into it.

More fun with strobes

This shot is a similar set up to the pub image with Mike. I had two SB-800's outside of the building firing in and another SB-800 in the other room firing through the door. The trickiest part was just getting everything to fire properly. I used my last SB-800 as the master instead of the SU-800 since that tends to get a larger spread to hit the strobes since they were all over the place. 

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Going back to Utah

Kendra on G2-07 (V8) in Joe's ValleyKendra on Big Joe (V7) in Joe's Valley Utah.

Today finds me getting ready for a trip coming up in a few days to Moab Utah with a group of college students from BSU for a week of climbing, hiking and mountain biking. Its kind of funny though that at this exact time last year I was getting ready to go on a another trip to Utah. That time was to the world class bouldering destination of Joe's Valley which turned out to be a bit of an adventure.

The trip started off after I had spent the day competing in a dart tournament that my team actually won. By the time that was finished and I was on the road with my friend Patrick and his brother the driving conditions were horrible, for at least six hours we drove through a snowstorm. After that though the rest of the drive was pretty smooth. Once at Joe's Valley we had to find the unmarked, unofficial campground at the Man Sized boulder area in the dark and then set up camp without disturbing everyone else. The biggest issue I dealt with was I brought the wrong sleeping bag with me for the conditions that we ended up with. I had packed for more of a dessert condition, not realizing that we would still be in the mountains on top of which we found out that Utah had gotten the biggest snow pack they had seen in 27 years.
Sunrise, first morning in Joe's

A Myspace friend of mine, Kendra,  showed up at the end of day 2 and things went pretty smooth until we came back to camp one day to find that the wind had mangled one of our tents. Turns out though that was a blessing cause I then moved into the car for the next couple nights and was finally able to get some decent sleep.

The only other problem we dealt with on the trip was the drive home ended up being just as brutal as the drive out. Once we got into Wyoming we got hit with an ice storm that slowed us was down. Now I really didn't get all the images I would have liked to for a magazine story I learned a lot on that trip about what it is going to take to become a pro adventure photographer and I am hoping to put those things to use one the upcoming trip to Moab.