Monthly Archives: August 2013

Turn Around

130818_SmithRocks_Clouds by Karl G. Graf.

Just turn around and see a whole different world.  The last 3 posts looking West showed peaceful images without a cloud in the sky.  Looking East was a totally different story.  These clouds were just flying across the sky along the eastern horizon.  I was intrigued by the wispiness of the clouds.  There must have been quite a high jet stream up there.  B&W provided the sharp contrast between the clouds and the bright blue sky.



130818_SmithRocks_B&W by Karl G. Graf.

These steep vertical spires of Smith Rocks separated the view between the images on my previous two posts.  Looking at these massive rocks jutting out of the landscape makes me realize just how amazing Nature is.  I attempted to use black and white to emphasize the drama of these spires.  An early morning sunrise will make this image spectacular.  I can’t wait to go back!


130816_SmithRocks_BrokenTop by Karl G. Graf.

We visited Smith Rocks (near Bend, OR) with a couple of great friends in early July at mid-day.  Not the best time for great breath-taking images.  So I focused on finding good compositions that I can come back to during another trip, at sunrise.  This image frames Broken Top between two spires of Smith Rocks.  The round boulder in the middle provides a little interest.  I removed houses that were located along the tree-lined ridge in Photoshop.  If you look close you can still see a few remnants.

When You See Red

130815_RedFlowers_Entryway by Karl Graf.

From John Barclay,  “When you see RED … Shoot!”  Yesterday evening I walked out our front door and saw this Salvia “on fire” from the early evening sun.  I ran inside to get my camera and try to capture the brilliance of the light.  I walked around the Salvia to find a suitable background to set the red against.  I stood on my tip toes to see if I could get it against some dark green foliage.  I got down on my back to see if I could set off the red against a cloudless blue sky.  I finally rolled on by belly and look up against the house and this is what I came up with.  I spent about 20 minutes trying to beat the setting sun to find this one image.


Lessons employed/learned:


1.  When you see red > shoot


2.  Find a good background, then put something in front of it.


3.  Explore all angles.


4.  Wait for the image to come to me, sometimes it doesn’t.



130802_Windmill by Karl G. Graf. Lonesome??? … Not really, just beyond the ridge there were hundreds more.  I selected to isolate this single wind turbine to portray the landscape the way I remember it back 13 years ago when I moved from the Northwest to the East Coast.  Wind turbines now are abundant on the desolate Washington hills above the Columbia River gorge.  I roamed on these lonesome hills as a young boy scout so many years ago. It gives me a sad feeling to see the once beautiful open hill country covered with industrial mechanical giants.

This image was taken along the roadside coming down from the Oregon plateau to the Columbia River near Biggs Junction, OR.

Tumalo Falls

130801_Tumalo Falls by Karl G. Graf. During a recent trip to Bend, my wife and I did a little exploring around the area.  We took a drive to Tumalo Falls during the middle of the day.  The mid-day sun did not do this beautiful waterfall justice.  To capture the bright greens without washing the bright water out, I blended two exposures together; one taken for the water and the other for the green trees.