Archive for ‘Photoblog’

June 15, 2014

Kennecott Copper Mine

This shot is from my archives, from back in 2008, a massive view of the Kennecott Copper mine from near salt lake city, utah.

Following a massive April 2013, landslide that resulted in about 165 million tons of rock plummeting to the bottom of the Mine, this no longer looks the same.  Here is how it looks after the land slides – Detailed Google Maps current view. Photos from when the slide actually happened – courtesy of KSL News.

Luckily no one was injured, accounting to the continuous monitoring that has been set in place for this 107 year old mine.  The mine is estimated to produces 25 percent of the copper used in the United States – and they recognized signs of increasing instability in the months before the slide, closing and removing a visitor center on the south edge of the 2.8-mile-wide, 3,182-foot-deep open pit. It is amazing to see how technology and continuous monitoring helped avoid a major mishap, but also resulted is so much of data that helped study the landslides later.

This is probably one of the world’s largest man-made excavation.

Bingham Copper Mine
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
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September 29, 2013

Colors of Autumn

autumn colors, bushes on fire
a light drizzle, the fog rolling in
and the photographer goes – click !

Canon 7D : Tamron  18-270 mm : ISO 100 : 18 mm : f22 : 8 sec

Buy Print West Cascades Scenic Byway
Estacada, OR, USA
October 1, 2012

Harvest Moon at Crater Lake

Camping out in the wilderness – it was such a cozy feeling, as I was lazing in the comfort of the sleeping bag with the pre dawn temperatures of 2oC. I was in no mood of getting out. Oh my, I was real glad I did push myself out eventually. Already short of time, I was driving a bit crazy to locate a spot for the sun rise along the rim of Crater Lake. To my left, glanced the reddish glow between the trees. My initial thoughts was -forest fire – as there was an high alert warning for the same. I stopped the car right on the middle of the road and set the tripod to get this shot. Luckily there was no car traffic to bother me, at the time of the hour :)

The Harvest Moon is usually the first full moon after the first frost or it is the full moon closest to Mabon. As MSN quoted, the harvest moon was extremely photogenic. Actually I was not even aware of the Harvest Moon until I read this article today. Now I know why the moon was so bold and red ! The Harvest moon appears larger and brighter due to its low position in the horizon, during the rise and set. The colors of this special moon – that yellow, gold and red is more an impact of the earth on the moon, than actually being a change in the moon. Autumn (Harvest) is the season when the focus is on the harvest of what has been worked on all year. Appreciation for what one had & has. As I enjoyed this scene, it definitely was a moment of contemplation …

I present to you The harvest Moon setting over the horizon, at the Crater Lake National Park Area. This shot is directly from the camera (RAW to JPEG converted for web display) with no post processing. I would have liked a closer crop, but did not do any processing, to highlight the colors as it existed. Where were u over the weekend, did u get a chance to enjoy the Harvest moon in person !!!

Camera : Canon 7D
Lens : Tamron 18-270mm
Filter : None
ISO 320 : 155 mm : f5.6 : 0.7 sec
Shot on : 09.30.2012 ; 6:39 AM


Buy Print   Harvest Moon
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon, USA
May 24, 2012

She is coming

I grab a pen
I drop a cap
I opened a book
and closed it shut.

I kick the sand
and raise some dust.

I run a circle
I do a jiggle
I go up in smoke
I stumbled
I crumbled
I laughed
I cried

someone,
someone …
just told me –
that you are coming :)

May 17, 2012

Grandiose Gopura of Meenashi Amman Temple, Madurai

Madurai, apart from being my home town, is really famous for many things from soft idles to jasmine flowers to being the birth place of ancient Tamil. Madurai is also synonymous with Meenakshi Amman Temple. Covering an area of 17 acres , the enter city was built around the temple. As you get near the temple the city streets meander and before you realize become lanes within the temple.

Known for its amazing architecture , this temple is one of the most ancient and famous ones in south India. As a kid I have always taken for granted, my visits to this place. When I went to my hometown in the last year, I made it visit this place. I did not have as much as time as I had intended, but still enjoyed it. I really wanted to capture the grandeur of the Gopura, its ornate work, the intricate sculptures from the pillars, the lovely etc colorful paintings on the ceilings etc. I think I succeeded, at least partially. This week shot is one of the 14 Gopuras that adorn the beautiful temple.

Buy Print Meenakshi Amman Temple
Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India
May 8, 2012

Covert Gem of Oregon – Abiqua Falls

A visit to Abiqua falls is quiet an encompassing experience. It starts with the leisurely silver falls scenic drive from Silverton. Before you could realize, you are navigating over and down the hilly terrain. Yes an ATV would be awesome, but don’t worry you can manage with any decent passenger car, provided you drive slowly. From the parking lot, the walking quickly changes to hike, then a bit of trek, some scramble across the rocks and logs, throw in a bit of sliding, scrambling, dodging the water as you navigate your way based on the falls that you hear at the distance. Falling just at over 100 feet – it is not the biggest of the Oregon falls, but getting the glimpse of this falls after the adventures trek gives a kind of peaceful and serene contentment. It is as if you just entered a different magical world. This weeks I share with you a slice of moment from my visit. The late afternoon sun just lit up the lichen creating the glowing contrast with the falls.

Buy Print Abiqua Falls @ Santiam State Forest
Marion, Oregon, USA
April 28, 2012

Sunset at Tulip Fields

Cool breeze, Rows and rows of colorful tulips, Lovely clouds, The setting sun dotting the horizon – what else could I ask for (just make sure not to delete the shots by mistake later – like I did. Luckily I was able to retrieve them). It was a lovely evening at Woodenshoe Tulip Farm. With rock climbing / small bungee jumping activities for the kids, pony rides, steam tractors, gift center etc. it is a fun place to spend with family during the bloom season. And while you are there definitely plan to stick around around for sunrise/sunset or better both ;-)


   

WoodenShoe Tulip Farm
Woodburn, Oregon, USA

April 13, 2012

Mt Hood at Twilight

That is how Customer Support is supposed to be : I host my photos with Smugmug and should say they probably have the best customer service. Generally they respond back to mails within less than an hour and have the overall issue addressed within few hours or maximum a day. This is irrespective of being a weekend or holiday as the support team is spread across the globe.

Recently noticed they had added a real time chat option – for support. I was skeptical, but went ahead and queried to get something taken care of. End of the chat realized the feature (setting my own License Agreement for selling digital downloads, hope they plan for it soon !) was not yet implemented. But the experience was exhilarating. It was kind of magical, the responses were so swift that it felt as if the other person was able read my mind. It was as if the person on other side was able to see and understand what I wanted, before I even sent the message. And just at that moment I realized that is exactly what was happening.  Many times when we try to frame a query we go back and fourth, refining the query – reading it from other end – in real time gives such a advantage in responding appropriately and quickly. Such a small technical workaround to give that speedy experience.

Thanks Ty (Smugmug hero), you made my day. And Smugmug you just rock !!! Thanks again for all the work you folks do …

Weekly Photo – Mt Hood at Twilight

We stopped over at Jonsrud Viewpoint when returning from Mt Hood in the past. It was late in the evening and the sun was pretty much set for the past hour. Being winter with the biting cold and not much light, I was not able to enjoy or appreciate the view. I did make a mental note to return here someday. I was really inspired by Gary Randall’s Mt Hood Shots. It kindled my interests and gave me the last mile push, Thanks Gary ! If u enjoy Mt hood (or landscapes in general) u definitely should check this out. It was nice meeting him in person last week at the Gallery display. Prior to this I did not know that there were gallery displays across town during First Thursdays.

Anyway, for the weekend the forecast was sunny and we were supposed to have some pretty warm weather and we did. I was glad I pushed myself out early. It was magical to watch the river flow from one side, the fog blanket the valley from the other, as the sun was about to peek from behind the peak. The twilight colors lasted a few moments, but was well worth the drive. I present to you Mt Hood at twilight. Wish you a pleasant morning  and a happy weekend ahead !

Jonsrud Viewpoint
Mt. Hood Scenic Byway, Oregon, USA

April 9, 2012

Night lit Skyline of Salt Lake City

The last few weeks blog posts were related to waterscapes. It was not intentional and I was really surprised that all were from Oregon, very different perspectives of waterfalls and all were having variations of green. Yet each one was so unique. Even the greens within the same shots were so varied. Ah! the beauty of pacific northwest !!! I can go on and on about the northwest landscape, let me just stop there :)

In an attempt to diversify a bit, this week shot is from other extreme – an urban landscape – Night lit skyline of Salt Lake City. Incidentally it also kind of reflects my mood – scattered, hyper, juggling too many thing – hopeful of finding the calm within the chaos.

The dome without mistake is the state capitol building, which by itself has a wonderful architecture and elevation. If you look keen enough, you can notice the adjoining lawns that have nice evening picnic spots and views. On the right is the famed LDS Temple. The elevation of this temple is beautiful too. Click here to check out the close up shot of the Temple Square. This panoramic view is from somewhere around the Ensign Peak Nature Park. Read somewhere that the pioneer leaders envisioned  Salt Lake City layout plans from this point. Now I know how SLC ended up with the boring co-ordinate road system :)

    View from Ensign Peak Nature Park
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
March 28, 2012

The Wall of Falls

One of the best ways to enjoy the Columbia George, at least to begin with, is by car. It gives a feel of the scenic vistas, hikes and the various point of interests spread along the way. This route is historic but definitely never gets old. Depending on the time of the year, the experience is varied. If you are lucky to be around there, just after continuous rain and the start of the spring, when the snow melt adds to it – u can see unnamed falls in literally every corner. This particular afternoon I was presented with the epic scene of multiple falls from across the river. Fortunately I was on the Columbia George scenic route and not the parallel I-84 highway. I was able to pull over, hike up a bit thru the trees to get a better view. Though afternoon, it was still foggy. It appeared heavenly, as the mist was kind of culminating down to the falls.

Sometimes all you have to do is look, right :)

    Unnamed Falls
Columbia George Scenic Highway, Oregon, USA
March 23, 2012

Latourell Falls – first and among best of Columbia George

Latourell Falls at the Columbia George is stunningly beautiful, it is also one special place for me. The profile photo that I use online was shot here, by my wife. It was not a planned shot at all, shot just at that moment … some sweet memories.

Recently, the seasons definitely are mixed up. We started off spring with snow shower out here in the pacific northwest. And after couple of days of rain & snow, it was supposed to be a clear for the weekend. It was kind of overcast, but the sun did peep out at times with a crack of blue sky. Given the snow melt and the rain, the falls were roaring, literally spraying water within ~50+ feet off its base. Generally I have shot this falls from the base – but today I was neither prepared, nor was I in any mood to get drenched. But I was glad I decided to shoot from the highway. The mix of the weather and the afternoon sun enhanced the yellow colored lichen cliff walls and the foliage. Including the bit blue sky helped capture the mood of the day – as I experienced – for you to enjoy ! Have a nice weekend.

    Latourell Falls
Columbia George Scenic Highway, Oregon, USA
March 14, 2012

Cascades across the road

North Umpqua River basin is probably a photographers heaven with so much of varied terrain. Returning from Crater Lake, we drove via US-138 Umpqua Hwy based on a friend’s suggestion. Glad we did. This routes is home to handful of waterfalls and Watson falls is probably the best. If you had been there or seen Watson falls you will immediately realize that this shot is not that of Watson falls. Apart from the main waterfalls falling at ~290 feet, a small cascade just below the footbridge below the falls provides some great macro possibilities. I could probably spend a whole day out here. The falls can be accessed with the short hike (~0.6 miles round trip). Once you park the car, you need to cross the road to get to the trail start. As you return back branch out halfway thru at the junction so as to form a loop. Just before you join the main road, look out for this place – where the run out water forms a small beautiful cascade. It is easy to miss after having all the fun at the falls itself, but it is well worth the stop. This is why I love Oregon, there are surprises and secrets in every nook and corner :)

The varied light did pose a challenge, but after couple of tries was able to capture it to my satisfaction. It was such a serene place. If ur lucky you might end up having the place all for yourself, with no one around. I really liked the play of light thru the trees, what do you think ?!

Cascade @ Watson Falls Runoff
North Umpqua River basin, Oregon, USA
March 7, 2012

Falling Down

Silver Falls state park that houses the famous Trail of Ten Falls is the largest of the Oregon State Parks. If it is the home of handful of gorgeous waterfalls, it has to be large, right. This forest area, by virtue of almost 80 inches annual rainfall is part of the rarely occurring temperate rainforests of the coastal pacific northwest.

Though it was almost afternoon, the overcast sky and the still passing fog helped capture the amazing light and the milky waterfall. Circular polarizer along with ND4 (Neutral Density) aided in capturing the multitudes of greens. Though the scene itself looks remote, dense and deep in the jungles (if I may call so) this North falls can be enjoyed right from the car as you drive to the South Falls where the Trail of Ten Falls actually begins.

 

    North Falls, Silver Falls
Sublimity, Oregon, USA
February 29, 2012

An Evening Walk @ Cannon Beach

This is a beautiful Cannon Beach sunset, on a cold winter evening. Haystack Rock @ Cannon Beach, is definitely an iconic location of the Oregon Coast. It is huge, i mean literally, standing at 235 feet tall. Makes one feel so small and humble ! We had planned for the tide pools at the rock, to get some hand on playing with Nemo’s friends. Unfortunately, it was high tide and there was no way to get to the rock. Note to self : Next time check the tide table before going to the beach. Did u know, there is an app for that too :)

Anyways, the high tide did help is capturing a wonderful sunset. Loved the way how the cool blue of the sky and the golden sun, serenely reflects on the receding waters. Come join me for a evening walk and enjoy the sunset !!!

    Haystack Rock
Cannon Beach, Oregon, USA
February 22, 2012

Misty Morning @ Matunga & Photoshop Sale

Hampi, apart from the historical ruins is an awesome place for trekking and rock climbing too. Matunga hill @ Hampi is one of the best spots for watching sunrise. the hike is a bit on difficult side, especially if you are not aware of the route. It is better to have a guide if you planning to hike up in the dark for sunrise. But the views are well worth it, they are pretty amazing. This week shot is of the temple ruins, right on top of the hills. The sun was playing hide and seek as the mist was starting to clear.  This was taken just moments after the sun rise shot that I had shared in the past. wow the scene changed so dramatically with light , angle and direction !

Update : Sorry, the deal is dead. Not sure why, It was supposed to be active thru Mar 2, 2012.
On a different note, if you are into photography and were looking to buy Photoshop, now is the best time. There is a huge sale going on @ Adobe site. The current version of Adobe Photoshop CS5 Extended can be got for $39, yeah you read that right – $39. The Student version generally sells for $199 (and the original without discount sells @ $699) and there is a 80% additional off, if you use the code SAVE80EDU. You could even get this for your kid who is in kindergarten – all you need is a student ID card or an appropriate school document. If you don’t have a student in the family, now is the time to join that course that you were eying for a long time ! The lower price is probably because of the fact that next version of Photoshop would be out in couple of months, but @ $39 I am not complaining :) The deal is supposed to be on till March 2, 2012, Go grab it while it lasts !!!

Veerabhadra Temple
Hampi, Karnataka, India
February 16, 2012

When Silence is more than Golden

The universe is large and we are tiny, without the need for further religious superstructure. One can have so-called spiritual moments without belief in the spirit … When you look at the Moon, you think, ‘I’m really small. What are my problems?’ It sets things into perspective. We should all look at the Moon a bit more often. Atheism 2.0 – A TED Talk by Alain de Botton

The beauty of being with nature, is that there comes a point,
When you are totally lost, as u search for yourself,
There is communication, even without conversation,
There is an insight, born out of silence –
Just being in the presence of self, both within and out !

 

Minimalistic Moon
US 26 Enroute OR Coast, Oregon, USA
February 12, 2012

Million Stars @ Trillium Lake

The starry skies on a clear night is so peaceful and soothing. Trillium Lake @ the base of Mt hood is an awesome place for watching the stars too. It is just far enough from the city to avoid the light pollution and short enough for an evening drive.

This was shot with the canon 7D at a slightly higher ISO [6400] and exposure of 30 seconds. It is indeed amazing how much cameras have evolved there by enhancing flexibility, freedom and creativity. This is one of my initial try, yeah there is lot more learning yet to be done … Though I am not satisfied with the overall shot, I was glad  to be able to capture the milky way. Now I would just have to wait for the winter to pass so I can just drive up to Trillium Lake. U know, its biting cold to hike up, and not so pleasant to camp out in the snow :)


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Milky Way @ Trillium Lake
Mt Hood, Oregon, USA

February 3, 2012

The Ray of Hope or probably not

I hope she would …
I hope one day …
I hope to …
I hope if only …
I just hope …
I hope …

It just doesn’t feel right. May be – hope – is just an excuse, for NOT wanting to take action.
It stops you from recognizing what is within you, what you are capable of, what you can achieve.

So, stop hoping …
Find the spark within,
Make things happen,
Get what you want,
The way you want,
And by the by, Do it now!

This abstract looking shot is for real. It is from the upper antelope (slot) canyon. Antelope Canyon is sometimes called Corkscrew Canyon, for the twisted features inside. Probably one of the most photographed places in the world, it is carved, day in & day out, by forces of nature. It pays to be there in the mid-morning (~ 10 AM). Next best time would be mid-afternoon (~ 2 AM) to get vivid colors. The position of the sun and the season also makes a difference. Light can make all the difference, right ! And do make sure to take care of Daylight saving time. As if DST is not confusing enough, Page(AZ) the nearest city does utilize DST but the Navajo nation (inside which the slot canyon is located) does employ DST. And when you are there, please don’t use flash. It does more harm to the shots than you know :)

Even the best of the photographs don’t do enough justice to this place. You just need to be there to experience it and see for yourself.


Buy Print Upper Antelope Canyon, Navajo Nation
Page, AZ, USA
January 26, 2012

Shrine of Subramanya @ Tanjore

I generally do not tend to post photos from the same place in continuity. But the more I look at the shots from Tanjore big temple, the more I am amazed. Hence continuing from last week, I present – The Shrine of Sri Subramanya – located just behind the main temple within the same compound. This definitely needs to be viewed in large, to enjoy the intricate sculptures and pillars. If this tower standing at 55 feet can carry so much grandeur, imagine how inspiring the main vimana can be at 216 feet !!! Surprisingly, this shrine is not referred to in the early inscriptions, and probably not contemporaneous to the main temple. It is popularly believed to be of the Nayak period, giving it a date not earlier than 600 A.D. The flash lights that you see around the corner is directed towards the main tower. Need to plan another trip once the maintenance work on the main vimana is over, hopefully !

This was 30 second multiple exposure, manually blended to highlight the texture on the sculptures and walls. As with most protected monuments, tripods were not allowed. I generally try to use my camera bag, wallet etc. to improvise, but that day, was lucky to have had Gorilla pod. I set it up in a remote corner and happily let it shoot multiple long exposures, as I was chatting with the security. It definitely disguised as – just a camera stand, rather then a tripod – at least in this place, where Gorilla pod is not yet prevalent :)

Have u sneaked behind security to get your best shorts ;-) would love to hear ur experience ,  do share in below comments !!!


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Shrine of Subramanya
Tanjore, TamilNadu, India

January 19, 2012

Big Temple @ Tanjore, India

The Big Temple, as rightly said, was constructed by Raja Raja Chola nearly 1000 years back – to be precise in 1010 AD. This is also the world’s first complete granite temple and an brilliant example of the grandeur and the major heights achieved by Cholas in Tamil architecture. Also know by the names of Brihadeeswarar temple or Rajarajeswaram – this Shiva temple – still stands as the largest temple in India, with the main vimana towering to 216 feet.

This week shot is SOOC (Straight out of camera) of the main vimana / tower at the Brihadeeswarar temple. Even with all the wooden frame around the vimana for some maintenance work (yeah! such a bad timing for the visit), could feel the awe and grandeur of the architecture. The temple had been sculpted to detail in every nook and corner. It is so spacious  with the open dance floor, huge lawn and multiple sanctum. This shot gives a much closer view of one of the hundreds of pillars out there. Makes one wonder on the amount of passion, dedication and work that would gone behind these marvels. If you are planning for a trip to south India, this is a must have on the iternary !!!


    Brihadeeswarar Temple
Tanjore, Tamil Nadu, India
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