Dr Marm never without my Nikon!

Posts tagged “storm clouds

American River Stormy Views

I am an avid reader and enjoy reading photography books, blogs, e-books–anything I can gain knowledge from and enjoy the wonderful images others have created.  Many times I have read that the best photos come from your location–knowing when the weather and conditions will get you an amazing view.  Usually, this is written by someone who lives near Yosemite, in Hawaii, and other vacation destinations I’d love to live near.

This week in Northern California we went from 100 degree weather down to the high 70s–that was a delightful shift and much welcomed!  There was also a threat of rain.  I was watching the sky and the clouds and noticed they were getting very inviting for a photo outing.  So, I went to the American River–one of my favorite locations and a 5-minute drive.  Have been dealing with severe back and neck challenges due to an injury, so am very limited in what I can do and for how long.  (This outing was less than 20-minutes and SO worth it.)

My Nikon 18mm is a wide angle prime and very light weight and has become my go-to lens.  Do love the continuing “learning curves” of photography! When I got home, realized I had a very slight vignette in every corner of my images.  (Have now taken the rubber hood off of my lens!)  So, decided to embrace the vignette concept..having never tried it before–had a fun time with it:)

The first teasing drops of rain began as soon as I sat down to take a few snaps, so didn’t stay long, but did enjoy the ever-changing clouds!

A few green spots near the river

Played a bit with white vignettes to match the clouds

A small area near the shore with slower moving water, a haven for ducks

Took advantage of a full frame camera and just cropped these, so the vignette was not apparent.  Know too much of a good thing can become boring, so no vignettes on these views!

View down the river

A patch of blue

Ironically, this is not a time I usually visit the river–in the middle of the day and during summer.  Had to take these shots in between folks going down the river on rafts.  Was reminded of this when I drove through the gate, to find limited parking. Am glad I went, though–certainly does validate the concept of finding great views in your own neighborhood:D

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Mono Lake Revisited…again!

Well, yes–my last post was on Mono Lake–but I visited again and witnessed the most amazing sunset and sunrise moments in my life.

I do know that I need to do more research on what conditions make for a more vivid color show at sunset and sunrise…my hunch is that storm clouds and conditions calling for weather changes do make a huge difference!

Just over a week passed from the photos I took at Mono Lake the previous week, to these views.  It is a common spot to find photographers and many famous artists have captured the glory of this locale. I was joined by about 4 serious photographers on this night. The scene constantly changes with various flashes of color and the changes in the clouds.  There is not a single place in the 360 degree view that is not worthy of remembering. A good example–is watching a professional photographer from the Bay Area running with his tripod from one spot to another.  That is how much you want to be able to capture every moment. Here are a few of the more memorable shots from an amazing sunset session.

Changing Flashes

All glowing

Western View

Finishing off the show was the most fire ball of light on the Western horizon…

Last fire light

Following this show of light, I was on such a “high” in total amazement of what I had witnessed over the course of less than an hour.  Decided if there is such a thing as “Photographers’ High” I had the pleasure of experiencing it. Was wide awake until well after midnight and had my alarm set for sunrise.

Didn’t think I could see anything as wonderful as the night before–however, I was not disappointed by any stretch of the imagination by a spectacular sunrise.

First light

Calm waters

Spectacular reflections

Space Age View

Distant colors

The last part of the extraordinary sunrise is when the first rays of the sun hit the highest peak. The color is in fact red and glows for a few minutes. For the true meaning of the art of photography that is “all about the light” this is one of the few times it is so visible. After a few minutes, the color of the sierra peak returns to the normal wonderful color–but still you can remember what it looked like!

Golden Hour Moment

So thankful this wonderful treasure is no longer on the closure list for California State Parks. To be a supporter, you can join the Mono Lake Committee–it is over 16,000 members strong. I was able to visit the information center and bookstore, located in Lee Vining and will now proudly be sporting a “Long Live…Mono Lake” on my license.  www.monolake.org

My heartfelt thanks to all of the individuals that have dedicated their time and resources to keep this fabulous place for many generations to come!