We got up early to see the moon set over the Sierras and Alabama Hills as they were being highlighted by the early morning sun. It was a great morning. We feasted on pancakes in Lone Pine afterwards!!! The morning even got better!
This image is looking due west from the eastern side of the Alabama Hills. The Sierras still have a little snow. Notice the difference in the erosion patterns on the Alabama Hills boulders and the the sharp eastern Sierras. Both ranges were formed near the same time. Nature does funny things.
I am getting ready for a photography workshop with John Barclay and Mitch Dobrowner at Capitol Reef in southern Utah. Part of the preparation is to select images of past work to show to the workshop group. I’ve spent the last two days reviewing my images over the past year. My focus for this workshop will be black and white photography. Overall, I am disappointed in my progress in 2018. I could not identify many individual stellar single images that stand completely by themselves. However, I did notice that I have several good images when taken together tell a story of the feeling I had experiencing a particular site. A collection of my images is stronger than any single image. For the next few days I will post a series of images from the Alabama Hills last April.
The Alabama Hills is a series of rounded rock hills and rock formations on the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range near Lone Pine, California. Mt. Whitney towers above the range. Since the 1920’s the rugged area has been used as a location for over 150 movies and TV show’s.
This image was taken looking northwest over some large boulders of the Alabama Hills toward the eastern Sierras.
The sharp peak is “Beartooth.” It does look like a sharp tooth. I can imagine the size of the bear that would have this peak as a tooth!
As I observe the wonder of nature that surrounds me, I like to let my imagination run loose. Here, I tried to place myself in the footsteps of our Native Americans and the lore that they created to attempt to explain the life around them. I could spend hours just sitting, seeing, and letting my mind explore. When I do so, I tend to drive the people around me a little crazy. Most of my creative work is done when I am by myself.
I am focusing on trying to create various moods with my black and white images. This image of Pilot Peak was shot in midday light. I added contrast along with dodging and burning to get this “late evening” mood.
The image below is processed with a B&W conversion with just a little contrast and brightness adjustment. It captures more of the detail, but lacks feeling (my perspective).
What is your preference?
Nature is magical! It renews itself. Out of a devastated landscape, life emerges. I wish I had taken photographs when Karen and I visited the devastated mountain twenty plus yeas ago. Everything was grey and brown, mud and ash. It reminded me of what I thought the moon’s landscape was like.
Now, life is emerging everywhere. The reds, oranges, yellows, and purples of the wildflowers scattered about breathe life into the landscape. The greens below are young trees that have sprouted from seeds that have been brought to the surface by the small ground animals that survived the blast underground and from returning birds dropping seeds from above. Life is a miracle! My spirits lifted as I looked down over the valley below. My imagination looked forward to picture a natural forest that will return in the centuries to come.