The monsoon season has been a good one this year, but for the most part, appears to be over. Sunny and hot dominates the upcoming forecast once again. We had almost a month straight with cloud cover, many small rains, and some downpours. Sadly, from a photographer’s standpoint, most of the big rains happened at night. There are a couple spots with normally dry waterfalls that have safe access no matter what the weather, and I’ve been wanting to capture those in full force. Two weeks ago, we had a daytime thunderstorm in the right part of town, and I headed out to see some waterfalls. As I got closer, I realized the rain had missed the area I hoped to see, so I kept driving. When I came upon this canyon, I could see a waterfall going. I knew I wouldn’t be able to get closer before the flow ceased, so I had a moderate telephoto lens along for that reason. Errant raindrops were still coming down as well as thunder rumbling from somewhere overhead, without seeing any lightning. Despite that, I could see blue skies about to take over. I took a photo from this same spot five minutes earlier that shows all the waterfalls because of the soft light. When I saw the sunlight coming through, I knew this was going to be a b&w. All those cliffs were still very wet, and in this shot you can still see one waterfall clearly. If you’re seeing this on a larger screen, you might see a couple of the other ones.
I’ll admit I haven’t been very motivated to take photos lately. I’ve been out hiking and had my camera along, but there haven’t been a lot of WOW moments. The thing that has captured my attention is new (to me) software. I demo’d a previous version of Topaz Labs software a couple years ago, but didn’t think enough of it to purchase. Advancements in their product made the decision different this time.
I have hundreds of photographs that I never considered printing because of slight flaws. I have now spent weeks testing the potential for many of these shots. The image above is one of several no longer going by way of the delete button. It was taken when I was still recovering from an injury, so I only had my camera with a smaller sensor and smaller megapixel size. Cropping of the original frame was further reducing its printing potential. Some images, mostly old film shots, are beyond recovering to the point I would like, but there are more than enough that have come through extremely well.
The top photo may not come across on screen like it does in a larger print. At first glance the rocks in the creek bed are the most obvious. Moving closer to the print, all those tiny branches capture the viewers attention, some clearly reflected off the water, some seemingly bonded to the stone. This is what I first saw when I pressed the shutter and am glad I was finally able to bring it out of the digital capture.