Weekly Photo Challenge: Solitude

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Stairs Mountain.

It’s been several years since I spent my first night alone in the wilderness. This is where I slept, high atop the cliff face of Stairs Mountain, deep in New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest. Peace, quite, solitude, with awe inspiring views in almost any direction.

The last thing I saw before before closing the flap on my tent in the night and the first thing I saw when I emerged in the morning, the beauty of the mountains.

That’s enough.

Should you get the chance, I highly recommend at least one solo wilderness camping trip.

Waterfall Wednesday

Crystal Cascade, Pinkham Notch, NH

Majestic Fall, Crystal Cascade, Pinkham Notch, NH

Dropping down thru a deep gorge, Crystal Cascade creates a dramatic waterfall scene in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

I’ve hiked by this waterfall many times, usually in the dark or too tired at the end of a long hike to give it much thought.

A couple of weeks ago I decided it was time to pay it a proper visit. So with workshop client in tow we made the short and easy hike to this spectacular White Mountain waterfall. One of 13 waterfalls we visited and photographed over a two day period.

I’m glad I finally took the time to stop.

 

Waterfall Wednesday

Time With Garwin Falls

It Depends. 

One of the questions I’m most often asked when it comes to photographing waterfalls is what camera settings I use, particularly what shutter speed.

And my answer is always the same, “It depends.”

It depends ~ On the look I’m going for. If I’m trying to capture the shapes and swirls created by bubble caught in an eddy, I know I’ll need a longer exposure time. The image above required 8 seconds to achieve the look I was after.

It depends ~ On how fast the water is flowing. The stronger the flow the shorter the shutter speed required to capture the silky smooth look on the water.

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A few weeks ago Mossy Glen was flowing very quickly due to recent spring rains, therefor I only needed a half second exposure time when making the above photo.

It depends ~  On the amount of ambient light you’re working with. This next photo, of Middle Ammonoosuc Falls in New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest, was made well after the sun had gone down. It was getting quite dark in the deep gorge the falls flows through so I knew I was going to need a very long exposure. The exposure time on this photo is 180 seconds.

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So as you can see there is no one set rule I follow when deciding on what shutter speed. Generally speaking I do try for at least half a second, but if the light is right or I really want to capture bubbles or leaves swirling on the currents I’ll experiment until I’ve captured the look I want.

NH Waterfall Workshop June 17-19

Cairn At Beaver Brook Falls

Join me for 2+ days of wet and wild waterfall fun as we photograph some of the amazing waterfalls in and around the White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire.

Curves Of Time

On this 2+ day workshop we’ll visit some of the most beautiful waterfalls anywhere, some will be well known and popular, with a few secret treasures thrown in for good measure.

Hobblebush Flower

Let The Fun Begin!

The workshops start on Friday afternoon with a short meet and greet where we will go over the weekends itinerary with the possibility of getting in a few waterfalls that evening.

Then each morning we will rise bright and early in order to photograph under the best light. With any luck it will be overcast and drizzly, ideal conditions for waterfall photography.

After each mornings shooting we’ll take a mid-day break to get some rest, go over the mornings images, as well as work on some post processing techniques using Adobe Lightroom*, Photoshop*, and the Nik Collection by Google* suit of creative plugins.

*If you don’t have any of these I strongly recommend downloading the free trial of each just prior to the workshop. (I have no affiliation with any of these products, they are however what I use to creatively enhance my images).

Then, after we’ve had a much needed rest, had a bite to eat, gone over some of your images and created a few masterpieces, in the afternoon we head out to do it all over again!

The only downside to the waterfall extravaganza is that there are so many spectacular waterfalls located in the area there is no way we could possibly visit them all.

Workshops are based out the very clean and extremely friendly White Mountain Hostel in Conway, NH. While it is not required to stay at the hostel( I know the hostel experience is not for everyone) I strongly recommend it to get the most out of your workshop experience. A limited number of private rooms are available.

Join me June 17-19, 2016.

Space is limited in order to be able to provide the maximum amount of personalized attention per client.

Your investment in this photographic adventure is $725*. Please use the contact form if you have any questions or to reserve your spot today.

*Meals and lodging are not included. Transportation during the workshop is provided be me.

My Happy Place

Beautiful autumn color and a mirror reflection on Wildlife Pond.The White Mountain National Forest.

Over the past two weekends I’ve had the pleasure of leading a handful of workshop clients, (one all the way from Jordan!) throughout the White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire.

From waterfalls to high mountain peaks to beautiful autumn foliage, the WMNF is my Happy Place!

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Through Mist And Fog.

 

On a mountain path through mist and fog.

Only footfalls on granite break the morning silence.

A stone sentinel the only witness to my passing.

~

Misty Morning On Davis Path

 

Heaven Is The Third Peak To Your Left.

Feeding my soul at 5,000 feet.

Blue Lincoln

The mountains are my church, and the windswept summits are the altar upon which I find solace.

In The Church Of Ice And Snow.

Many worship behind stained glass, or under minarets.

My place of worship is in solitude, high on a mountain ridge as I watch the sun dip below the western horizon. As the warmth of daylight is replaced by the cool blue of twilight, this is where I find peace and salvation.

For me, this is Heaven.