Fall is Officially Here

It’s most definitely Fall again. The year has gone flying by and the mountain tops are already getting coated with snow. The Cottonwoods and Aspens are starting to turn that wonderful range of greens, yellows, oranges, and reds. It’s a great time to be in the Rockies where there are endless opportunities around the bend to photograph. The Gallatin River is surrounded with Cottonwood trees and this time of the year it’s great to be on that river for two reasons, big fish moving through and all the colorful trees.

Image Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Aluminum Looks Best Bright and Shiny

There are many ways to make the aluminum on aircraft to pop in a photograph. Pretty much anytime light hits bare metal it makes the metal turn a different color. The shadows and highlights can define every edge of a plane. With bare metal one of the amazing ways to show off the surface is too use a strong highlight in the background. It’s one of the times that a bright white background actually works well.

Image Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Beauty in the Crop Sprayers

Crop sprayers have their own beauty to them but they often get overlooked. Granted some beautiful light and great clouds never hurt to have but the lines of the planes are just as good either way. Each aircraft has its own story and the lines on each plane help to tell that story. With all photographs the background and foreground are important. With a crop sprayer having the plane parked on the grass makes for a stronger composition then if it was parked on the concrete.

Images captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Fall Storms Bring Lots of Opportunities

Fall is definitely here! The temps are dropping into the 40’s at night on a regular basis, rainstorms and snow in certain areas, and the days already feel shorter as the skies stay darker. With these days comes great opportunities. From wide-angle to close up the cloud formations allow for a lot of different options. This one stormy evening last year proved very fruitful as the small window of god beams came through the clouds lighting up the Bridger Mountains.

Images Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Fast and Furious

The Hawker Sea Fury was developed too late to see combat in WWII but it saw plenty of action in the decades afterward. Powered by the Bristol Centaurus 18 Cylinder Radial Engine, the Sea Fury was an impressive fighter. With a maximum speed of 460 mph it could easily keep up with the other fighters of its day. Today you can see it flying around the pylons at the Reno Air Races.

Paradise Valley Lives Up To It’s Name

Paradise Valley has always been a favorite place of mine to spend time in. The photography options are quite bountiful from critters to landscapes, even airplanes. For the first time this past weekend I got to spend some time on the Yellowstone River and the landscapes were just as amazing. My friend Al was helping by being the subject as we were fishing down the river. The high banks and the low casts made for some great photos in the early morning light.

Images Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Seemingly Natural Tunnels

There must be a million and one of these kinds of photos. A trail going through a forest makes for a simple yet perfect composition. Is it a cliche in the photo world? Yea, but if you don’t have the image in your files why not take it? There are those photos that we’ve all seen in magazines and social media and those are the ones we enjoy seeing.

Summer Storms Coming to an End

The year has gone by fast yet again and already the fall storms seem to be rolling through the valley. Nights in the forties are already starting to become normal which for August is pretty abnormal. Last night we had one heck of a storm blow through, very much like the ones we would have in the spring. Unfortunately, I was nowhere near a good spot to stop for it but it reminded me of this encounter in a previous year.

Image Captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

It Pays to Get Up Early

This has been one weird weather year! Every time someone thinks they have it figured out something changes. We went from a cold winter to a cold and wet spring, to a blast of heat followed by a wet summer and now in August, the temps at night have been barely above 50. Only in Montana does it seem to change this much. I know everyone says that about where they live but it sure feels that way this year in the Rockies. The one major benefit of this unique summer is how it has affected the atmosphere. Thunderstorms during sunset and ground fog in the mornings. Over the last few years, I have been going to the Three Forks Flyin and this was the first year where there was ground fog at the beginning of August at sunrise. It was pretty darn cool!

Images captured with Nikon D5, 24-70 AF-S, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film 

The View From Above is Sure Pretty

I haven’t done much aerial photography in my life but the view from above can sure be pretty at times. From the ground, everything always seems so big and open but from above everything seems so perfectly placed. Either way, working with landscapes is the same. The way the light carries you through an image then back out is extremely important in your composition. The way the earth moves needs to correlate with the light. Flying in a Travel Air 5000 with the Nikon D5 and 24-70 AF-S, it wasn’t hard to sit back and enjoy the scenery.

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