The rain stopped and many of the clouds started to clear off by sunset, so I climbed out of my tent, grabbed my camera and tripod, and rest stepped my way up the hill above camp to photograph the landscape as the sun descended over the ridge the west. I think the panorama with the rock in the foreground was one of my most successful photographs on the trip (first panorama). Although I don’t usually include my own image in my photographs, I also liked the way my shadow falls across the hillside opposite the setting sun (second panorama).
Rock Shadow at Sunset over the Lake, near Jumla, Nepal (16″x44″)
Rising Shadows and Retreating Clouds at Sunset, near Jumla, Nepal (16″x60″)
The setting sun casts long shadows through the tufts of grass and yucca poles in the foothills; the angled light provides a sense of depth to the peaks.
Path to Boyd Sanatorium and Organ Peak, Organ Mountains Natl. Mon., NM (16″x38″)
I took a panorama of the flatiron-like foothills at the base of the Organ Mountains outside Las Cruces, New Mexico. I decided to keep one version of the panorama in color and to convert the other to black and white. I like the color of the sunset, but the black and white has a more subtle, silvery glow.
Flatiron Sunset (color), Organ Mountain National Monument, NM (16″x49″)
Flatiron Sunset (B&W), Organ Mountain National Monument, NM (16″x49″)
I have found that stitching together sunrise/sunset bulb exposures to make a panoramic photograph is quite difficult. Although I maintained the 30-second exposure for each frame in the panorama below, the dusk lighting constantly changed as I composed the separate frames of the image. When I stitched the images together, the tones of the ocean did not match at the edges of the images, likely due to both the changing light as well as the different number of waves captured in each frame. After a black and white conversion, I think this photograph turned out well, but I still need to improve my bulb panoramas at the golden hour. Below the panorama I also included a single-frame color photograph of the waves and the sun at sunset.
Sun, Waves, and Rocks, La Jolla, CA (12″x18″)
I stopped outside Zion National Park to camp in BLM land so I could get up early to hike the Narrows the next morning. Here is the view from our campsite looking back down valley towards Rockville and Zion along the Smithsonian Butte National Back Country Byway.
I drove through Saguaro National Park West and the Tucson Mountain Park for the first time in early January. As a Tucson resident, I am accustomed to seeing desert plants scattered around the city, but the number of cacti in Saguaro NP West is staggering. Giant saguaros grow right up to the bases of the Tucson Mountain Park cliffs, creating a forest of towering green cacti. I stopped around sunset to take two panoramas of the moonrise over the Tucson Mountains, one as the sun cast a golden glow on the cliffs, the other just after sunset.
Jagged, lichen-covered rocks and gnarled junipers line the backbone of Frary Peak on Antelope Island. As the sun sets over the Great Salt Lake, pink light reflects off the mountains and clouds in the distance.
A partly cloudy, warm winter afternoon made for a perfect winter hike to the top of Frary Peak, Antelope Island. The sunset light was fantastic as fog and clouds surrounded Stansbury Island in the distance.
This August I spent an afternoon wine tasting at the Sonoita vineyards as a summer monsoon thunderstorm passed overhead. On my way back to Tucson, I stopped on the side of the highway to photograph the evening light on the mountainous clouds. This is another of my favorite panoramas from 2014.