Category Archives: Photos of Landscapes

A favourite photo of a landscape; from my collection.

Don’t Fence Me Out

Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above
Don’t fence me in
Let me ride through the wide open country that I love
Don’t fence me in
Let me be by myself in the evenin’ breezes
And listen to the murmur of the cottonwood trees
Send me off forever but I ask you please
Don’t fence me in.
– Robert Fletcher & Cole Porter

In today’s world, even in the wide open country that I love, being fenced out seems to be a bigger challenge than being fenced in.

Chain-link fence in foreground; desert in background.

Southern Arizona

 

Rusty fence in foregroun; copper pit in background.

Bisbee AZ

 

Chain-link fence with no trespassing sign

Bisbee AZ

 

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Waterfall, Chandler AZ

Good photographs require both some technical skill and an “eye.”  Maybe all art does.

For me, what that means is that learning how to use the manual settings to take long exposures that aren’t overexposed (of flowing water during the day, for example) is only the first part of the challenge: Choosing a creatively interesting exposure and composition is just as necessary here as in every other area of photography.  Having a capable camera and knowing how to use it is necessary, but not sufficient.   Continue reading

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Mountains and Marsh, AZ

Chasing the standoffish sandhill cranes (they don’t seem to want to get any closer than about 100 yards), I gave up trying to get good pictures of them and started taking pictures of things that were more accommodating.  Like the near and far vista.

Marsh in foreground; mountains on horizon.

 

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Fountain Spray, Gilbert AZ

I’ve started to use a tripod for shots where I want or need a slow shutter speed.

This is one of the trial photos that I took at a small fountain a few blocks from our rental house in Gilbert.  With the back-lighting provided by the late afternoon sun, the slow shutter speed turns the water spray into arcs of light, and the churned-up water into cotton candy.

Slow-shutter photo of water spray.

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Rio Grande, Las Cruces NM

In the SW corner of Las Cruces, New Mexico, is Mesilla Valley Bosque State Park. The Rio Grande cuts right through the park. As in many parts of the American Southwest, the municipality diverts some river water and pumps treated wastewater into ponds, thereby recharging the aquifers while providing marshy habitat.  Birds, hurray!

Well, not in December: something to do with when the rains come and when the farmers need the water for irrigation.  We walked the whole trail and saw no water, not even in the riverbed of the mighty Rio Grande.

Since my birding plan hadn’t worked out, I was reduced to taking pictures of that dry riverbed and the country behind it, stretching to the mountains on the horizon.  I find something pleasing about these landscapes with layered bands of colour and texture.  Even if there are almost no birds on offer.

Sand of dry Rio Grande riverbed, willow bushes and grasses, mountains on horizon.

 

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