Fiery Rio Rancho Rural Land Real Estate Photography Sunsets

Fiery Rio Rancho Rural Land Real Estate Photography Sunsets

Fire in the Rio Rancho Sky

I am often out in remote Rio Rancho on weekday evenings in the midst of a 55+ property rural land real estate photography assignment for Hemingway Land Company. On a recent shoot clouds were heavy on the horizon and I was counting on the sun dropping below them, just above the horizon, and allowing me to get some of my signature HDR sunset photos. The sun did in fact reveal itself, but with a fiery wrath!

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Rio Rancho Rural Land Photography August 2018

Rio Rancho Rural Land Photography August 2018

Neither rain, nor lightning . . . nor hail!

Back on a rural land photography assignment for Hemingway Land Company in remote northwest Rio Rancho, New Mexico, I had to wait out a deluge, hail, and lightning to get these photos!  A lot can happen in 30 miles in the evening during the monsoon season in New Mexico, and that was certainly the case as I left Albuquerque in mostly sunny skies only to end up surrounded by dark clouds in all directions in Rio Rancho.  I got a few quick photos, then the rain came and I took cover inside my Jeep Renegade Trailhawk.  In the middle of the rain I saw in my rearview mirror a lone rider on horseback.  I could not tell who liked it least being caught in the rain, man or horse!

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Monument Valley Utah Sunrise Professional Photographs

Monument Valley Utah Sunrise Professional Photographs

6am in Monument Valley Utah

I have been to many places around the world, some considered wonders of the world, like Angkor Wat in Cambodia, some hard to reach, like the jungles in Borneo, as well as famous wonders in the U.S. like the Grand Canyon and Yosemite.  Monument Valley in Utah ranks up there with the most wondrous places I have seen.  I bookended my time at Monument Valley first with a sunset visit, then the next morning at 6am with a sunrise explore.  The photos you see here are all from that very early even-pre-sunset time in Monument Valley.  So early, no one was at the gate to even pay to enter!  No one else had yet driven into the valley that morning.  I had the view of the two Mittens and Merrick Butte all to myself for awhile.  

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1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson Nikon D3100 with Amy in Lettuce Lake Park Tampa Florida

Amy users her Nikon D3100 during our 1-on-1 photography lesson in Lettuce Lake Park Tampa FloridaIt was decidedly drier for our 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson this morning in Lettuce Lake Park.  When I met Amy three weeks ago there was a deluge the entire time that kept us in the visitor's center.  The sun was out in full force and so were we with 50mm lenses during this third of four photography lessons.  We walked out onto the boardwalk intending to create shots with shallow DoF using the large aperture ability of a 50mm f/1.8 lens.  I instructed Amy that we would not be shooting using the set the focus the recompose technique we had been with wide angle lenses.  Since teh DoF is so shallow with a 50mm lens at even f/2.8, we must first frame the shot how we want then move the single focus point over onto the intended subject.  

While out on the boarkwalk we were greeted by a number of turtles and even a snake . . . exciting!

We finished the lesson changing lenses and shooting at 200mm in low light practicing how to get the exposure right in such conditions.  For our fourth lesson we may go indoors and work on editing and workflow and thus have no worries about weather.

St. Petersburg Florida Skyline at Twilight Fine Art Photography

St. Petersburg Florida waterfront skyline in vivid twilight - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/11 ISO 200 5 sec tripod mounted with cable release

Each time I go out to the top of The Pier to make waterfront skyline images like this of downtown St. Petersburg Florida, I think it may be my last since The Pier is scheduled to close in May 2013.  As you can see, its closing will be a great loss for photographers and anyone who enjoys a great vantage point for looking at the sunset over a cityscape.

Finding the last light left over St. Petersburg Florida fine art photography - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/11 ISO 200 5 sec tripod mounted with cable releaseThe Pier is five stories tall with an open roof allowing for the making of clean shots (i.e. not shooting through window glass).  It is often a quiet spot, especially on a weeknight, providing an opportunity to watch the sunset in peace as twilight then night takes over.

Colorful pelican profile views St. Petersburg Florida fine art photography

Brown Pelican looking very colorful in profile St. Petersburg Florida fine art photography - Nikon D300 Nikkor 105mm VR micro @ f/4 ISO 200 1/4000thSome more examples of one of my favorite subjects to photograph in St. Petersburg, Florida -- brown pelicans.  The males, like the one featured here, are actually rather colorful in their plummage.  I thought the line of buoys in the background matched the colors around the bird's beak and eyes.  

Brown Pelican looking eye-to-eye in St. Petersburg Florida - Nikon D300 Nikkor 105mm VR micro @ f/4 ISO 200 1/4000thPhotographing a pelican straight on always produces a weird looking shot.  It kind of makes me uncomfortable even now looking at the pelican in the eye!

St. Petersburg Florida Silhouette Dusk Twilight Fine Art Landscape Cityscape Waterfront

The downtown St. Petersburg Florida waterfront in Silhouette at vivd dusk - Nikon D300 Nikkor 50mm @ f/4 ISO 200 1/200th handheld

This was an image I made quickly while taking Kiki for an extended walk around the downtown St. Petersburg waterfront on a recent Saturday evening.  I was traveling light, just my Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D lens on my Nikon D300, but even with that lens on was still looking for a possible landscape shot.  With Kiki always in constant motion and having no tripod, I knew my best bet of getting a usable shot was to go for a silhouette of the skyline, which is done by using a fast shutter speed I could easily handhold, even with Kiki always trying to sniff something just out of reach.  The fast shutter speed exposed the bright sky well, but put the foreground buildings and boat into silhouette.