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March 2016

Monochrome Madness: MM2-51

The Superstition Mountains are on the eastern edge of Phoenix, Arizona.  This rugged range is one of the first places I began exploring and developing my photography skills.  Back then, I used to wonder why this region didn’t have National Park status, but have since come to realize that was a blessing in disguise.  Proximity to the metropolitan Phoenix area can make it crowded, especially on holiday weekends, but not like it would be as a park.  The rugged canyons can make for great wilderness hikes, but it was always the unique rock formations riddled throughout the range that I came back to photograph.  The above photograph is from my most recent trip into the mountains, and is my contribution to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness this week.

WPC: Half-Light

The Daily Post Challenge of Half-Light seemed like an easy one to find an image for.  The time between sunset and darkness (and darkness to sunrise) offers some of the best opportunity for great photographs.  But a poem, verse, song lyric to go along with that photograph?

Fortunately I had the album “Machine Head” by the group Deep Purple as one of my favorite albums growing up.  The band’s most well-known song is on that album, but one song which always stuck with me probably never got any airplay.  I’m sure I had the cassette tape/CD playing on some trips to mountainous regions, and it still makes me think of places like this. ^

The song is called “Pictures of Home” and the lyrics go like this:

lyrics.jpg

WPC: Dance

For this week’s challenge of Dance, I almost took the easy route with photos of people dancing, but then remembered the operative word is challenge.  You’ll probably enjoy these a bit more, anyway.  I know I do.

For anyone who has ever witnessed a slow lava flow, you know there is a pulse that surges, as the cool air solidifies the flow, while the warm undercurrent wants to keep moving.  The final cooled result (above) reflects that pulse, and was taken in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Flowing, tumbling water can also have a rhythmic feel to it.  The sunlight was being filtered through the forest, and accentuated most of the current in this shot of Oak Creek, near Sedona, Arizona.

Flowing Water, Oak Creek, Sedona, Arizona, Steve Bruno

Clouds can portray a feeling of choreography, even in a still capture.  My favorite example is this thunderstorm at sunset near Cloudcroft, New Mexico.

Thunderstorm Clouds, Sunset, New Mexico, Steve Bruno

Finally, rock art symbols almost always have a sense of dance and celebration, indicating how important this was in ancient culture.  This panel of rock art is in the Grand Canyon.

Rock Art, Grand Canyon, Arizona, Steve Bruno

Monochrome Madness: MM2-50

In California’s Death Valley National Park, the most accessed and photographed sections are in the southern end of the park.  This is where you will find Zabriskie Point, and Golden Canyon, among other features.  As Golden Canyon’s name suggests, color photography can have quite a saturated pop here, but I find that the area has a lot of detail and depth that shows off even more in black & white.  This shot is included in Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness this week, where you can see other b&w images from contributing photographers.

Monochrome Madness: MM2-49

On the big island of Hawaii, there are several black sand beaches.  This one, at the end of the road on the north side, has some pretty spectacular cliffs.  For this moment, however, it was the beach beneath my feet that had captured my interest.  The tide was just high enough to touch the rocks in the foreground.  As the water receded, the depressions in the sand were revealed, and the reflections of the distant clouds lit up the beach a little further away.  This is my contribution to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness this week, other bloggers black & white work can be seen there.

Monochrome Madness: MM2-48

As the sun was going down on the desert in western Arizona, only filtered light was making it through the clouds on the horizon behind me.  The light on the wall of clouds remained strong, yet softened because of the angle of the sun, allowing the textures to come through.  This is my contribution to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness this week, other photos can be seen on her site.

WPC: Harmony

This week’s challenge made me instantly think of music, but not just any group.  These three are perhaps the best harmonizers in the history of rock and roll.  From left to right are:  Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, and David Crosby.  Better known as Crosby, Stills & Nash.

There is always harmony in nature, but finding an image to convey that feeling took a little time.  I came across some reflections which came close, but then remembered this shot.  The balance from left to right, then reflected, seemed to be the right one.  The location is Mount Hood, Oregon at the appropriately named Mirror Lake.Mount Hood - Mirror Lake - Oregon - Steve Bruno - gottatakemorepix

Mid-week Mixings: One Year And Counting

WordPress recently informed me that I have been on their site for a year now.  To those of you who have followed, liked, commented or enjoyed my posts – Thank You!

It was a little over a year ago when I was spending way too much time on a computer because a leg injury was keeping me inactive.  Those who know me know I don’t do well at sitting.  I came across a page that explained why photographers should start a blog and listed some sites.  I really had no idea what I was getting into, but I have a lot of photographs that never made publication, and many that have a story behind them.  I was always disappointed when I came across other photographer’s websites and saw interesting images that had no words to convey the thoughts, motivation or process behind the image.

I suppose I should start with my title.  Quite a few years ago, I had the chance to meet with Josef Muench.  Josef was one of the pioneers of modern day landscape photography, and around that time an editor told me that Josef was still submitting photos to the magazine, some of which couldn’t be used because the emulsion had started to degrade.  As I was talking with Josef, I asked him, “Out of all your photographs, which is your favorite?”  He responded quickly with “The one I haven’t taken yet!”  He was an inspiration with his images, but even more so with his philosophy.  I want to reach that age and continue taking photographs that I still care about.  That’s where the name Gottatakemorepix got its initiation.

I had a couple stories that I wanted to write when I first started, but I wasn’t sure how long I would keep this going.  Then I started noticing blog posts that all had the words “Weekly Photo Challenge” in the title, and soon began posting those.  I’ve participated in other blogger’s challenges, and as much as I enjoy seeing what other people respond with, I never knew how time consuming this could become.  I also noticed a lot of people posting “Wordless Wednesday”.  After doing a couple of these myself, I thought I can’t do this…I need words.  So my alternative is Mid-week Mixings.  This allows me to get away with Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, too!  To those of you that post every day, my hat’s off to you – I don’t know how you do it.

If you don’t see a post from me for a while, it’s a good bet that I’m travelling or just plain busy.  My priorities are still real life, family, and friends before cyberspace.  My end of December and beginning of January were way too busy to do a 2015 recap, so I’m going to do it here.

Starting with your favorite post, we have this from Weekly Photo Challenge: Doors

Eddie's Place - Steve Bruno
Door to Eddie’s Place in the Kanab Creek Wilderness, western Grand Canyon by Steve Bruno

Not far behind in your favorites was this one, another Weekly Challenge of Grid

Old West Fence - Steve Bruno
Old fence on a ranch in the desert, photo by Steve Bruno

While the most liked/commented images were in the Daily Post’s Challenges, many of you enjoyed these images from one of Cee’s Challenges

This grasshopper shot was another challenge that the blogging community seemed to enjoy

grasshopper - Steve Bruno
grasshopper clings to agave plant, photo by Steve Bruno

The Daily Post’s Symbol challenge gave me a reason to go out and photograph something that everybody and their brother has a shot of, and when I got there, I discovered more subjects fitting the challenge

Las Vegas Blvd - Elvis - Steve Bruno
Elvis impersonator performs under the Las Vegas sign. Photo by Steve Bruno

Although not a challenge, but close to home, I enjoyed capturing fireworks last summer

Fireworks Las Vegas 2015 - Steve Bruno - gottatakemorepix
Las Vegas Fireworks July 2015. Photo by Steve Bruno.

 

Away from the challenges, this one was a little departure for me, but has become one of my favorites, as well as yours

Atlantic Ocean - Morning 01 - Steve Bruno
The Atlantic Ocean in early morning. Photo by Steve Bruno.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before that I really don’t enjoy shooting with clear blue skies, but I found a situation where it worked well

Weather is a little more to my liking for taking photos, and I showed this in one of my first posts of the year. I don’t know what grinder WordPress uses to compress images, but the first time I posted it did not look as good as it does on my screen. I like unique captures, and this is a favorite so far this year, and hopefully it looks better this time

Red Rock Canyon Nevada - Winter Snow - Steve Bruno - gottatakemorepix
A window of sunlight shines through clouds in Red Rock Canyon, Nevada. Photo by Steve Bruno

 

Weather also makes for great sunsets, and before I shot the video that I posted on Thanksgiving, here was the still view

Red Rock Canyon Nevada - Sunset - Steve Bruno - gottatakemoremix
Sunset over Red Rock Canyon, Nevada. Photo by Steve Bruno.

 

You know by now that I can’t resist the view out of airplane windows, and I have plenty of those from last year. Here’s one more that you haven’t seen yet. Over Montana, I believe

Window Seat over Montana - Rocky Mountains - Steve Bruno - gottatakemorepix
Aerial view over the Rocky Mountains. Photo by Steve Bruno.

 

I can’t go a year without returning to my Muse, and here’s one from last year at Valley of Fire State Park

Valley of Fire - Arch - Steve Bruno - gottatakemorepix
Sandstone cave in Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada. Photo by Steve Bruno.

 

And lastly, I know phone cameras have improved, but I still consider my DSLR my real camera.  My shots in the rain in Seattle last November started making me appreciate the phone a little more

Seattle Rainy Night 02 - Steve Bruno
Pedestrian in the nighttime rain in Seattle. Photo by Steve Bruno.

Monochrome Madness: Straight

This shot of a ponderosa pine forest typifies much of the higher elevations of Arizona and New Mexico, and I have even glimpsed similar scenes on the eastern side of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains.  This is my entry for Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness.  The theme for this week is straight, and you can see what others came up with here.

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