Chicago trip

For a visit to the windy city, I enjoyed shooting the remarkable architecture in the city. Some of the shots were from a guided riverboat tour, and some of them make use of HDR (high dynamic range) photography. For some of these shots, I tried to showcase the contrasts between the colours and textures of the buildings.

Southwest USA Tour

As a group of four, we flew in Las Vegas, took in Hoover Dam, had a couple of nights in Yosemite National Park, and spent time in Bryce Canyon, Big Sur, and Death Valley. Quite a worldwind tour, there was a lot of driving, but the destinations were well worth the travels.

Perhaps the most surprising thing was the very first photo, where mere steps from deboarding the plane, you’re confronted with slot machines. Welcome to Sin City.

Arizona Trip

Being from Ontario, a visit to the US southwest is a photographer’s candy store. Everywhere you look, the colours, the textures, and the vistas of what at times seems like an alien landscape abound.

Highlights included Sunset Crater National Monument, where the twisted trees are remnants of a 900-year-old volcanic eruption. At Antelope Canyon, a special photographer’s tour in the morning allowed tripods and even some advice from the tour guide on best angles and exposure settings. I was the only one who showed up with a tripod, and the guide asked everyone else to step aside so I could take the ultimate photo.

For our brief visit to the Grand Canyon, I timed our descent down the canyon to coincide with the setting sun as we returned back up. A note about the Grand Canyon – the best way to experience it is to descend from the top edge. It’s safe and easy to get to “Ooh Ahh Point” (hilariously named by the National Parks Service) and well worth the time. I can only imagine how it feels to reach the Colorado River, a few thousand feet below.

A drive north to Monument Valley is a sight to behold. This area is synonymous with the American West, and western movies in particular. I managed to stay there past sunset and capture a star trails photo too.