Canyonlands

Here are a few images from my recent trip to Canyonlands National Park. Canyonlands is divided in three sections by the conjunction of the Green and Colorado Rivers. The central section, nearest to Moab and easiest to get to, is sometimes called Island in the Sky. The southeastern section is the Needles, and the southwestern section contains the Maze.

On this trip, we were based in Moab, Utah and able to visit the Island in the Sky (central) and Needles (southeast) sections of the park. On a previous trip, years ago, I spent time exploring the Maze (southwest) section, which is little harder to get into than the other two areas.

I certainly hope to get back and spend some more time in the Canyonlands backcountry; all three sections of this wonderful and remote park are absolutely brilliant.

Related images: View through Tower Arch; View from Deadhorse Point.

Tree with a View © Harold Davis

Tree with a View © Harold Davis (Needles section, Canyonlands)

Snow on the Plateau © Harold Davis

Snow on the Plateau © Harold Davis (Island in the Sky)

Beneath the Rim © Harold Davis

Beneath the Rim © Harold Davis (Deadhorse Point)

Winter on the Mesa © Harold Davis

Winter on the Mesa © Harold Davis (Island in the Sky)

Posted in Landscape, Photography

Death Valley Landscapes

There are few more beautiful landscapes on this good earth than Death Valley. Here are a few images from my recent visit, with the photographs emphasizing patterns and folds in the vastness of this very special place.

Folds in the Earth © Harold Davis

Folds in the Earth © Harold Davis

How deep is my valley © Harold Davis

How deep is my valley © Harold Davis

Big Old Rock at Sunrise © Harold Davis

Big Old Rock at Sunrise © Harold Davis

Posted in Landscape, Patterns, Photography

Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference Discount Code

I’ve recently returned from a photography conference in Yosemite Valley organized by the Out of Chicago gang. This was an incredible life experience! These guys (and gals) know how to organize things, and present a smorgasbord of photographic offerings at their conferences that is rich beyond belief.

Whatever level of photographer you are, if you like flowers and gardens as much as I do, there is something for you at their Botanic conference. So it makes me very happy that there is a discount code I can offer you (see below), but you must take advantage of the discount soon (by March 10). I look forward to photographing with you at the Chicago Botanic Garden in August!

Into the Vortex of the Universe © Harold Davis

Into the Vortex of the Universe © Harold Davis

I am pleased to announce that I will be teaching at the Out of Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference in Deerfield, Ilinois near Chicago, August 23–27th, 2020. Field sessions will be at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Use the special discount code DAVIS at checkout for a $250 discount for registration until March 10, 2020.

If you care about flower photography as much as I do, this one will be great!

Out of Chicago Botanic Garden will bring together passionate flower and garden photography enthusiasts with world-class photographers all in a great location, where you can learn and shoot side-by-side with working professional photographers who appreciate flower and garden photography.

Highlights include:
• Stay in Deerfield, Illinois and photograph the Chicago Botanic Garden for 5-days.
• Daily, in-the-field, hands-on, small group teaching excursions.
• There will be classes, group critiques and post-processing help.

Don’t miss this one! Reserve by Tuesday, March 10, 2020 and save $250 by using my special discount code at checkout, DAVIS.

Visit www.outofchicago.com/chicagobotanic for registration and more information about the Out of Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference.

Posted in Workshops

Upcoming free “Photography as Poetry” presentation

I will be presenting Photography as Poetry at the Alamo Danville Artists’ Society [ADAS] on Tuesday, March 10 2020 at 7:30 PM. My presentation is free, and open to the public. More information below, or click here for details.

What: Artist, Photographer, and Writer Harold Davis presents Photography as Poetry

Where:  Alamo Danville Artists’ Society [ADAS]
1401 Danville Blvd.
Alamo, CA 94507
 
Open to the public and free.
 

When: Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at 7:30pm

Description: Davis’s extraordinary imagery builds on the masterworks of the past while embracing revolutionary innovations in photography. He puts it this way: “I believe that advances in the technology and craft of digital photography have created an entirely new medium. My years of contemplation opened my eyes and my heart, and taught me to see more deeply. I use this alchemy of wonder to combine the traditions of painting and photography with new technology.”

The topic of his presentation is “Photography As Poetry”:

“Photography is narrative, and some photographs are prose while others are poetry. In this presentation, artist and photographer Harold Davis examines how we create imagery that conveys powerful emotion and meditative healing in the context of the rush of modern life, and along the way how his life as a photographer has connected with art and poetics.”

More info: adas4art.org/monthly-meeting

Posted in Photography

Exciting Ride to Tower Arch

So there were four of us, or six if you count me, myself, and I: also my old friend Eric, my German friend and colleague in x-ray photographics Julian, and Loki the Australian sheep dog. We happy few drove in Eric’s Blue Ganesh, an off-road modified high-clearance Toyota 4-Runner with under-armor plates, video front and aft, a pop-top sleeper, a snorkel like an elephant trunk, and a hobbit-like stove pipe bringing up the rear. You’d have to see this vehicle to believe it.

Eric, who had just completed a certificate course in off-road driving, was of course at the wheel. A fact I was glad about as the off-road trail I had picked turned radically into a stone and mud obstacle course, and Eric proved the usefulness of having a split differential. Who knew that each wheel functioning on its own could make such a difference when climbing a wall of rocks?

At the end of the bone-jolting ride a short walk led up and over and through the kind of stone maze that I love to traverse, and at the end of the walk there was Tower Arch, photographed here looking back through the opening west at near sunset using a horizontal fisheye.

View through Tower Arch © Harold Davis

View through Tower Arch © Harold Davis

Exposure data: Nikon D850, Nikkor 8-15mm fisheye at 15mm, eight exposures from 1/60 of a second to 2.5 seconds, each exposure at f/29 and ISO 62; tripod mounted. Exposures combined and processed using Nik HDR Efex Pro and Photoshop.

Posted in Photography

Whirlwind of Photography

View from Deadhorse Point © Harold Davis

View from Deadhorse Point © Harold Davis

Starting in Yosemite at the Out of Yosemite photo conference, we headed for Death Valley. We were in Death Valley for a few days. While there, we photographed Zabriskie Point at sunset and sunrise, and many other places in Death Valley National Park.

Then we headed east, where the whirlwind photography highlights included Sunset Point in Bryce Canyon at sunset, slot canyons along the Grand Staircase in Escalante, Deadhorse Point in Canyonlands National Park, and Island in the Sky at golden hour.

Yesterday saw some action in the Needles section of Canyonlands and in the back country of Arches National Park.

We’re headed back west and home now, with a few stops along the way.

This has been a veritable whirlwind of photographic fun, and I am looking forward to having the time to process many of the images I have made. When does one ever really have the time to do this in the rush of photography commissions, book writing, life, and family? (Also known as the “digital photographer’s lament”!).

On a completely different note, I’m looking forward very much to being home, and to spending some time with my family!

Zabriskie Sunrise © Harold Davis

Zabriskie Sunrise © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Near Tehachapi

Near Tehachapi, on the main road up from Bakersfield to Mojave, I saw the light was getting good as golden hour, still early with winter long nights, quickly approached. I swung into active-photographer mode, managed to execute a u-turn across the four-lane, semi-truck heavy traffic, and found an interesting little side road. This tree in the beautiful, glowing light was my (possibly just) reward.

Near Tehachapi © Harold Davis

Near Tehachapi © Harold Davis

Photographed with my Nikon D850,  Zeiss 21mm Distagon, seven exposures from 1/100 of a second to one second, each exposure at f/22 and ISO 64, all exposures tripod mounted; exposures processed on the fly in my motel room in Mojave using Nik HDR Efex Pro, Photoshop, Nik Color Efex Pro, and Topaz Simplify.

Posted in Photography

Trains on a Siding near Trona

The wind was kicking up dust devils as we neared the old mining town of Trona, east of the Sierra in California, and en route to Death Valley. These train cars, sitting empty and forlorn on a siding seemed melancholy to me, the story of someone or something whom life has passed by.

Trains on a Siding near Trona © Harold Davis

Trains on a Siding near Trona © Harold Davis

Related image: Poem of the Road.

Posted in Photography

Photography Conference in Yosemite Valley

El Capitan from Valley View © Harold Davis

El Capitan from Valley View © Harold Davis

I am en route from the Out of Yosemite photography conference to Death Valley for a few days of photography. The conference was hectic busy but great fun to be back to Yosemite, one of this world’s most special places, and a true honor to be included as an instructor in the company of legendary photographers including Michael Frye, William Neill, Alan Ross, and John Sexton. Thanks to my fellow instructors, all the attendees, and Chris and his team for organizing this incredible event.

Skim Ice on the Merced © Harold Davis

Skim Ice on the Merced © Harold Davis

Merced River Reflections © Harold Davis

Merced River Reflections © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography, Workshops, Yosemite

Tulips like Stained Glass

Tulip like Stained Glass © Harold Davis

Tulip like Stained Glass © Harold Davis

I got these tulips when they were nearly unopened, sourced from a local organic farm (the same place my anemone models came from a while back). After a while, the blossoms opened, the pale pink turned reddish, and in the insides came alive when placed on a light box like stained glass.

Tulip Fandango © Harold Davis

Tulip Fandango © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers

Dance of Spring Poster

Dance of Spring Poster by Harold Davis

The Dance of Spring is the Dance of Life poster was published by Wilderness Studio, a company I founded, in the 1980s. The Dance of Spring did very well indeed for us, and could be found in dorm rooms, graphic galleries, and living rooms. We still have a few left in the flat files that we use to store prints, and I must say I remember the days when fine art graphic posters were a big deal, and Pinterest wasn’t even a mote in a venture capitalist’s eye, with a certain amount of nostalgia. This was a simpler world, and far less glued to tiny screens.

Posted in Photography

Hydrangea Blossoms and Rock Spiral

I made this light box composition with two spirals: one of small, wet rocks and the other with blossoms cut from a blue hydrangea bloom. I thought to create an homage and distant echo to Robert Smithson’s famous earth sculpture of a spiral jetty.

Hydrangea Blossoms and Rock Spiral © Harold Davis

Hydrangea Blossoms and Rock Spiral © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Out of Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference August 23– 27th, 2020

I am pleased to announce that I will be teaching at the Out of Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference in Deerfield, Ilinois near Chicago, August 23–27th, 2020. If you care about flower photography as much as I do, this one will be great!

Out of Chicago Botanic Garden will bring together passionate flower and garden photography enthusiasts with world-class photographers all in a great location, where you can learn and shoot side-by-side with working professional photographers who appreciate flower and garden photography.

Highlights include:
• Stay in Deerfield, Illinois and photograph the Chicago Botanic Garden for 5-days.
• Daily, in-the-field, hands-on, small group teaching excursions.
• There will be classes, group critiques and post-processing help.

Don’t miss this one! Reserve by Friday, February 28th, 2020 and save $250 by using my special discount code at checkout, DAVIS.

Visit www.outofchicago.com/chicagobotanic for registration and more information about the Out of Chicago Botanic Garden Photography Conference.

Posted in Workshops

New in Workshops. New In Books. New in Art.

New in Workshops

  • The early-bird registration for Photograph Tokyo (Oct 24 – Nov 1, 2020) ends soon (Jan 31). Please consider joining us for a fabulous destination photography workshop. Click here for workshop information, and here for the Reservation Form.  Please let us know right away if you’d like to come!
  • There’s still space in this year’s Photographing Flowers for Transparency workshop (June 20-21, 2020). Click here for information and registration (or contact us for manual registration).
  • Photographing the Great Gardens of Maine (August 16-21, 2020) will be great this year, with Oldie-but-Goldie gardens and new horizons as well. Now open for registration. Click here for information and registration.
  • Please consider joining us in Paris (Spring 2021) for a boutique photography workshop with a great small group of folks. Click here for information, and here for the Reservation Form. I’ll look forward to photographing Paris with you!
Flowers with Dances and Delights © Harold Davis

Flowers with Dances and Delights © Harold Davis

New in Books

My new book Creative Garden Photography is due out from Rocky Nook towards the end of the summer 2020 and is now available for pre-order. The book features garden photography from around the world, some of my best flower images and how they were made, and techniques for use in the field (the garden), close-up, and botanicals in the studio (light box, on black, etc). Phyllis and I are working hard on writing and designing this book, and we think it will be very beautiful (as well as practical and useful).

Creative Garden Photography will be available from the publisher, Rocky Nook, on Amazon, and “wherever fine books are sold.”

New in Art

We are offering for a limited time your choice of one these four photographs by Harold Davis of Claude Monet’s legendary Garden at Giverny, France at a very special price. They are Giverny Afternoon, Flowers at Giverny, Giverny (Bridge), and Red Tulip, Giverny. The images are shown below.

Each print is on 13″ X 17″ paper (the image size is a slightly less than the paper size), hand printed in my studio on wonderful Moab Juniper Baryta extra premium photographic paper, and personally signed by me.

Your print of choice is $295, approximately a 75% discount from our normal retail price for a print of this size of $1,200. $30 shipping within the US (please inquire for international shipping). Sales tax also applies.

Click here to read more!

Flowers at Giverny © Harold Davis

Flowers at Giverny © Harold Davis

Posted in Business of Art, Photography, Workshops

Guest Blog: Beliefs and Answers, Holger Mischke

Holger Mischke is a photographer/writer/musician who works mainly in black and white and combines his images with stories, describing the world around us filtered through the world inside him. You can see more of his work on his website holgermischke.com and follow his writing on his blog holgermischke.blog.


Photo Credit: Jörg Wüstkamp

To live a life I think you need to believe in something, need to find some answers. Without those beliefs and answers, there is no sense of direction, which will make it hard to find it in yourself to make an effort, since you don’t even know whether the next step is getting you closer to where you want to be or further away.

The answers can be found everywhere. Sometimes you already heard them and didn’t recognize them. Sometimes you knew them all along. It’s just that the right questions were never asked.

When I read Ansel Adams’ 1965 article about Edward Weston, one sentence struck home with me: “You might discover through Edward Weston’s work how basically good you are or might become.” The questions I asked myself after reading this and pondering it for a while made me realize something I knew all along. About who I was. And about my work as a photographer.

When They Come © Holger Mischke

It is no coincidence that most people will tell you when asked where they go to wind down, relax, find peace, recharge, that they’ll find all that in nature. I believe that we all feel that way in nature is because we are basically going home. It’s where we belong, it’s where we came from and will go back to. And it’s what we feel disconnected from when we’re back in the everyday “real” world.

X Marks The Spot © Holger Mischke

I am often asked why there are rarely any people in my photographs. I think they are always there. When I take pictures of forests, mountains, the sky, the sea, a sunset, then you can find yourself in there. You, and all the rest of us. I believe that everything in nature is connected and even in this day and age when he have managed to be so out of touch with nature if we are willing to be open, we can find ourselves there again.

Big Sky © Holger Mischke

So when I show you Marram grass in the wind under a stormy sky along the coast, it is you. When I show you fir trees aching under the weight of the snow, it is me. And when I show you the moon reflecting in the ocean stretching out to the horizon, it is all of us and all you will ever need to know. Because at this point the questions will start forming inside you and point you to what we knew all along. And what will help you discover how good you are or might become.

A Wind Is Rising © Holger Mischke

“I know now wherever I go, the path will show itself with every step I take. I’ll never be lost.” This is my idea for The Path (France, 2018).

The Path © Holger Mischke

Posted in Guest Blog