Winning

Longs Peak and Otis Peak greet a new morning at Rocky Mountain National Park. This was my third attempt this winter to capture this scene. I had envisioned shooting a scene like this but my previous two attempts resulted in less the ideal atmospheric conditions. Canon 5D II, 24-105mm

‘Winning’. The word is simple in meaning, but often more complex to define what actually constitutes a win. It has become a popular catch phrase of late because of its frequent use by a popular celebrity. While I wont use this blog to explain the many beneficial uses of acquiring ‘tigers blood’, winning as it pertains to photography is not so easily defined.

From my point of view, I register a win each time I am lucky enough to get out into the field with my cameras and photograph. Many times, I may head out into the field and encounter circumstances such as poor weather, or poor lighting that may prevent me from actually capturing any images at all. Though I am grateful to be spending time out in the field regardless of the underlying circumstances, there are times when I may return from a shoot feeling at a loss or unsatisfied with my results. Even when all the stars align, human error may prevent a photographer from successfully capturing an image. For a photographer, using your vision to execute successful photographs can be challenging and difficult but also very rewarding when it all comes together for you in the field.

Snow and fog drift along the base of Boulder's Flatirons formation. I often photograph this area under simmilar conditons. From experience, I hiked up Flagstaff mountain. This experience, allowed me to sucessfully execute this image. Canon 5D II, 70-200mm F4 IS

Many of the photographers I greatly admire often state that capturing only a handful of images each year that portrays their vision constitutes a success. While I tend to agree with this line of thinking, I find there are some landscape photographers who are able to spend a short amount of time in the field and return with more than just a handful of portfolio worthy images. Those photographers may of course feel their efforts and results were all in vain.

Snow and Fog begin to lift away from the flanks of the Flatiron's formation. It was snowing when I first arrived at the base of Flagstaff mountain. As I hiked towards the summit, the weather began to change and I had to drop my pack quick and setup my tripod to catch this scene. I was about 2.5 miles up the mountain when this occured. It was purely by chance that I happend to be in this location when this scene unfolded. Sometimes you just get lucky. Canon 5D II, 70-200mm F4 IS

When attempting to ‘win’ at landscape photography, perspective may be the most important trait. Each time I venture off into the field, it important to value that time to hone my skills, improve my craft and hopefully capture some compelling imagery. As the old saying goes, ‘a bad day in the mountains is better than a good day at the office’.

It’s Go Time!

Boulder Flatirons New Year's Day
Sunrise over the Boulder Flatirons on New Year's Day

Borrowing a line from one of my favorite sitcoms of all time, Seinfeld, off we go into the blogging world. As much as I enjoy photography, I also enjoy writing and sharing my photography. I plan on using this blog to detail my travels and adventures as well as my often disjointed thoughts on various subjects and topics. One of my New Year’s resolutions for 2011 was to actively start blogging as well as to post imagery more often. As often as possible I will update my blog with new images and photographs. How frequently do I plan on updating the blog?. At this point I have made it a goal of mine to update the blog at least once a week, hopefully more. Come hell or high water I plan on sticking to that plan.

Obviously it took me a little longer than I wanted to get the blog up and rolling. Because it was a New Year’s Resolution of I’ve mine to start blogging in 2011, I figured what better way to introduce the blog than to include the first image I shot in 2011. I was suprisingly lucid on New Year’s morning and needed to get my ‘active’ dog, Jackson out of the house for some morning excercise. One of Jackson’s favorite spots is the area around Boulder’s Chautauqua Park. Conveniently, this also happens to be one of my favorite hiking spots. New Years Day started on the chilly side, around 8 degrees if I remember correctly. As we arrived at the trailhead, sunrise looked promising. Clouds billowed over the Flatirons and there was a nice clearing along the eastern horizon. Off we went into the meadow and a few mintues after setting up my camera, 2011 greeted me with this image. Not a bad way to start 2011.