Near & Far

Today let’s begin with two great images from two superb photographers.

I admit that I have never seen an image quite like this, in so far as color and tone, from Death Valley. Not only is the photo beautiful for its color, tone and texture, but the nuances of light that “dance through” the scene are powerful

Landscape photographer Michael Frye is the artist.

Luminous ravine, Death Valley NP, CA, USA

While I love nature photography, and that is the purpose of the Earth Images blog, there are uncountable numbers of subjects that provide powerful visuals.

Those that move fast, are dangerous, and feed our imagination are among my favorites.

John Hallett captured this stirring picture of the one and only Air force Thunderbirds, as they fly in a formation that defies what is possible.

Now from some hot new images, let us look at some semi cool old ones.

There is no way a photographer can spend a day viewing and photographing wildlife, and not be enchanted and fulfilled at the end of that day.

I captured this female Greater Scaup as she captured a Mussel or some other sort of mollusk. My day was spent near home, watching, enjoying and photographing an assortment of waterfowl.

The American Avocet is one of the most interesting and glorious birds in the Americas. This duo I believe, had their picture snapped by me in New Mexico’s Bosque del Apache NWR.

Birds near home, birds 1,200 miles fro home.

When you make an image like this, there are always compositional choices to make. I chose to allow a little more room in front of the subjects, than behind. That gives them somewhere to go to.

Tight portraits are always nice. They make us feel like we have a personal relationship with our subject.

This portrait of a Clark’s Nutcracker was made in Colorado. I enjoyed the subtle but contrasty balance of light and dark on the bird, almost as I did the bird itself.

This group of female (Colorado again) Pronghorn Antelope was as interested in me as I was in them. They more or less composed my image for me as these two crossed each other and the closest one stared straight into my eyes. Now she lives forever in a photo..

There obviously are no Pronghorn, and for that matter Nutcrackers or Avocets in my part of the country, which is Wisconsin. While travel is necessary for many species of critters, we all have something near home (like the Scaup) that is as fascinating as what we find at other locales. The point is, travel when you can, but if you cannot, there are countless subjects near everybody’s home.

The sun rises and sets, and creates amazing colors, reflections and more for all of us.

With this first image, the sun’s rays made for some powerfully bright clouds as well as reflections of those clouds. The light was naturally of high contrast, and I know many photographers who remove contrast in the digital darkroom. Not me, I most often take what I am given, and if it seems beyond belief, but it is true, I cannot wait to share it.

This next image, made near home, was naturally colorful enough, that I actually did de-saturate the entire photo a little bit in the editing process, I order to keep it believable.

I am so glad that I spent my photographic life getting up early.

I have forgotten where I made this photo. Most likely in Wyoming or Colorado. The high contrast is natural given the shadowed valley and the brightly (sunrise again) lit snow capped peak. With that said, I found the small amounts of unrecognizable detail in the foreground bothersome, and did make the decision to render it black in this photo. I of course have the original file and can share the true scene if I want to. Those are the decisions we make.

Finally, let us finish with something local to me, and shown exactly as I made the image. Who needs to alter this?

Our prairies and meadows here are often jammed with these Shooting Stars in spring. They are a personal favorite if mine, both to enjoy and to photograph.

I hope each of you has a great day whether you are near home or far from it.

May God Bless,

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