2018 included our first actual Wisconsin winter. As usual, we spent a couple of months at our beach house at Hamilton Beach in Wareham, Massachusetts. I also made several trips back to California to visit my mother, brother and sister, and friends—and was usually able to do a bit of photography. In October, my brother Ward and I made a two day trip over to the Sonoma coast, where I was able to do quite a bit of photography. More shots from this trip are at The Wild Sonoma Coast.
2017 was a year of major change as Susan and I moved from Walnut Creek, California to our new home in Madison, Wisconsin in the Spring. As usual, we spent a couple of summer months at the beach house at Hamilton Beach, Wareham, Massachusetts. In the fall we drove from Wisconsin to a wedding in Albuquerque and the International Balloon Fiesta. Then, on to California, wending our back through the Wyoming outback, up through the Black Hills of South Dakota and back to Madison on Interstate 90. A highlight was a November trip to the national parks in southwest Utah.
During 2016 I was able to make photographs in a wide variety of places: from Redwood National Park in far northern California to Nubble Lighthouse on the coast of Maine—and a lot of places in between, including Pacific Grove, California, Grand Canyon, Santa Fe, and the usual haunts around Walnut Creek and on the South Coast of Massachusetts.
This collection is the result of travels around the United States (and one night in Canada) during 2015. It’s organized roughtly by region: Northern California, then elsewhere in the western US, including a week around Moab, Utah, then the Midwest, and then summer in Massachusetts. This is also the year I took a deeper excursion into astrophotography.
The majority of the images in this book were made with a Nikon D3 digital camera, fitted with a Nikkor 28-300mm zoom lens or with a Nikon D800 digital camera, using a Rokinon 14mm f2.8 wide-angle lens. The photos of New Orleans were made with my Apple 5 iPhone. The image of San Francisco Bay on page 19 and the rainbow on page 63 were made with my Apple 6s iPhone.
With the exception of astrophotography, and those made with the iPhone, most images in this book are high dynamic range (HDR), made by shooting each scene with five “bracketed” exposures in rapid succession and then combining them into a single image using Photomatix Pro software during post-processing. All photos in this book have been organized and processed using Adobe Lightroom CC (2015). The book was laid out using Lightroom’s “Book” module.
In May 2015, four hearty souls (my son Geoff, brother-in-law Greg, nephews Alex and Mike) and I (a less hearty soul) set out for Moab Utah, often called “standing up country,” for a week of exploring and photographing many of the remarkable rock formations in Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, as well as the surrounding land and even a starry, starry night.
I’ve put together many of these images in a new self-published book called “Red Rock Country.”
“Superior Winter” is my new self-published book that includes more than 60 images from my February 2014 photographic adventure in Northern Minnesota.
You can download a free eBook version to view on an iPad using the iBooks app. There’s also a pdf version, but at 127 MBytes, it’s pretty large. If you would like the pdf version, just send me an email requesting it. I’ll reply with a link to my Dropbox folder, where you can download it easily.
As I just mentioned, it’s free for your iPad (not iPhone, sorry.) Just click here and a new window will open at blurb.com where you’ll see how to download it. You’ll notice you can also order the hardback coffee table version of the book, but it’s a somewhat larger investment. (Blurb gets the money, not me.)
The idea of the free eBook is to induce you into ordering prints for your walls. Just email me the page number(s) of any print(s) you’d like to order. You’re free to order anything else you like, as well–ether form this blog or at the main website at craigshots.com
In the meantime, enjoy the preview of the hardcover version, which show you the first 17 pages. If you click on any of the links below you’ll end up at the Blurb page inducing you to buy the hardcover book. You can also view many (but not all) of the book’s images elsewhere in this blog.
There are my favorite images of 2013 and include jelly fish at the Monterey Aquarium, the Grand Canyon, Rancho de Chimayo, New Mexico and early morning (before the tourists arrive) in Galena, Illinois.
The beach shots were made down the street from our summer home in Wareham, Massachusetts.
Other California locales are the Stanislaus River near Pinecrest in the Sierra Nevada mountains, as well as several from Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek, just a few hundred yards from our home.
The majority of these shots are my first experiments with High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography. Cameras have a much more limited dynamic range (the visible range from dark to light) than our eyes. By making multiple exposures of a single image ranging from under-exposed to over-exposed and then combining them via special-purpose software, we obtain an image that more closely resembles what we see with our eyes.
However, like all computer-based tools, HDR photos can be manipulated to look grungy and artificial. My personal aim is to try to replicate what I saw in nature.
My 2012 images include the San Francisco Bay Area, New Mexico and Massachusetts. Plus some places in between…
The first five shots in the gallery were taken from my backyard in Walnut Creek, California, which has an excellent view of Mount Diablo and its foothills.
We encountered the sheep at an obscure offramp of Interstate 80 in Wyoming. The deep purple shot was in the midst of a ferocious nighttime thunderstorm in the aptly-named Weatherford, Oklahoma.
The church, Sanctuario de Chimayo, is renowned for its healing powers and is located 25 miles north of Santa Fe, NM. The ladders and holes in the cliff are ancient Native American dwellings at Bandelier National Monument, some 10 miles outside Los Alamos, NM.
More sunrise shots of Mount Diablo follow, including a contrail illuminated by dawn’s early light. The water reflection shots were made one bright fall day and clear evening along the Sacramento River. The last two shots of San Francisco were taken in November 2012 from the Transamerica Tower.