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G Dan Mitchell / 322 items

N 22 B 1.2K C 3 E Jun 21, 2014 F Jun 23, 2014
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Morning Forest. Lake Tahoe, California. June 21, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

Morning light filters through forest trees near the shore of Lake Tahoe

Although we were not at Lake Tahoe primarily for photography, and although the previous day had been a busy one — a long drive and a wedding! — I got up before dawn and headed out to see what the morning light might bring. Shortly after 5:00 AM I was out and driving south along the west shore of Lake Tahoe. (Note to others visiting the lake: Get up early! It is beautify and almost no one else is out yet, turning this usually crowded place into one of near solitude.)

The light was tricky. High clouds were in the sky above the mountains along the far, eastern side of the lake, and the early sun was mostly blocked by them. But the clouds were not solid, and as I headed south I started to see sun breaks, and pools of light traveled across the landscape of the west side of the lake, separated by bands of shadow. As I passed this otherwise nondescript spot, a bit of beautiful backlight shone through the trees, so I quickly pulled over... and the light immediately went dark! But soon it returned, and I had found composition that included these sparse trees set in a small valley below me, and I was ready to make this photograph.

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | Facebook | Google+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Tags:   lake tahoe morning light filter tree green forest trunk landscape nature travel scenic sierra nevada mountains california usa north america stock license print Lake Tahoe

N 16 B 1.2K C 1 E Jun 1, 2014 F Jun 3, 2014
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Redwood Forest, Spring. Butano Redwoods State Park, California. June 1, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

Dense spring growth and fog-filtered light in the forest at Butano Redwood State Park

I'll stick with the redwoods theme for a bit longer and share another photograph from my recent first-time photography visit to the Butano Redwoods State Park along the California coast between Santa Cruz and Half Moon Bay. I had not visited this park before, much less photographed it, though I had photographed along the access road that leads to it from the Pacific Coast Highway. It is a pleasure to actually "discover" a new park so close to home!

I chose to visit on this day at least partly because of the promising light. It remained foggy and cloudy along the coast pretty much all day, so I figured that if I went inland a few miles toward the redwoods I might catch the thinning fog and the soft light that it can produce. I found a trailhead, loaded up the camera pack and tripod, and headed out. There was so much to see in this lush forest that I made very slow progress, stopping every couple of minutes to consider and sometimes make another photograph. From this spot along the trail I found a view past closer trees and on into more distant growth, and I stopped to make a few photographs. In this one I chose to work with a vertical composition to emphasize the slender forms of the second-growth redwoods and other trees reaching toward the light.

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | Facebook | Google+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Tags:   butano state park california usa north america redwood forest trees growth spring green dense moss filtered fog light intimate landscape nature sempervirens sequoia coast stock license print

N 13 B 1.3K C 1 E Apr 2, 2014 F Apr 23, 2014
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Panamint Mountains, Spring. Death Valley National Park, California. April 2, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

Cloud shadows pass across valleys of spring-green high desert plants in the Panamint Mountains of Death Valley National Park

I like to think of this photograph as one that may offer a more truthful presentation of the character of Death Valley. As photographers, almost all of us to looking for the extraordinary—momentary instances of astonishing light, brilliant color towering clouds, dramatic light, and more. And, of course, there is nothing remotely wrong with that. It is these things that draw us to these places and which drive our search once we get there. We will often put up with, sometimes patiently and sometimes not, hours or days of what some call "blah" light in order to be able to photograph brief instance of something atypically powerful. But we must be aware that what we find and show in this brief slices of time is often special precisely because it is unusual.

A few years back I started thinking more about my relationship with the landscape of Death Valley and the surrounding terrain. I have been focusing on the extraordinary—and I still do—and on the way to such places I often passed through other areas, sometimes without taking the time to think about what I was seeing in those moment of passing through and being "on the way." I think that it partially out of frustration that I arrived at the idea of trying to see these subjects more clearly and try to figure out how to photograph them. After all, I knew—at least once I stopped to think about it—that my love of this places was not limited to just the unusual and extraordinary moments, but that it also included midday quiet in the heat and subtle colors of sage country, a series of simple overlapping ridges, a bit of rock. And once I recognized this I started to think that these things, and not just sunrises and sunsets and impressive formations and unusual clouds, might make worthy subjects if I slowed down and tried to understand them. And this is one of those photographs. There is no single, impressive subject in this frame. Instead we have the almost uniform pale green of the arid mountain plants on an early spring day after rain, when the plants produce a subtle but surprising green coloration that varies as the land alternates between gullies and the tops of low hills and clouds from a cleaning storm move across the landscape.

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Tags:   death valley national park panamint mountain range high desert gully valley spring plants green cloud shadows landscape nature california usa north america travel scenic stock license print

N 2 B 464 C 0 E Aug 8, 2014 F Aug 25, 2014
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i>Brooklyn Rorschach Test. Brooklyn, New York. August 8, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

Layers and paint and removed paper create patterns on a concrete wall in Brooklyn

There isn't really a lot to say about this photograph, but there might be a few things to ask. This was more or less a quick "grab shot," taken while walking not far from the waterfront at the Brooklyn Bridge Park, where it isn't uncommon to find places where various signs and billboards have been posted and then removed.

So, what you are looking at here is the result of various layers of paint and the after-effects of material that was glued to the walls and then removed. I think it is interesting to ask what you see in these patterns when you look at them. The more I look the more I see, but I won't try to convince you that what I see is the "right" thing to notice, and I think that lots of other interpretations are possible — or that you might even choose to simply see it as a place where stuff was removed from a black and green wall!

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Tags:   brooklyn dumbo new york state borough north america usa street wall paint green black paper removed patterns rorschach stock license print

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Spring Oaks, Sierra Foothills. Tuolumne County, California. May 4, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.

Spring oak trees and meadows, Sierra Nevada foothills

In this drought year Tioga Pass, the trans-Sierra route through Yosemite National Park, opened earlier than usual. For me, the opening of this pass marks the end of the winter season and the beginning of the summer, with its easier access to the high country. Virtually every year I mark this event by visiting the Yosemite high country on the opening day or as close to it as possible. This year's early May opening fell on a busy weekend, so I couldn't be there on the actual opening day, but two days later I was able to squeeze in a one-day up-and-back trip from the San Francisco Bay Area.

I was up way before dawn and on the road before 4:00 AM. During the winter months such a start time would get me into the Sierra for dawn photography, but with the longer days at this time of year the sun rose when I was still in the foothills. While many might regard the foothill terrain as something to pass through on the way to the more interesting goal, I have come to love the soft, curving foothills, with their covering of grasses (green at this time of year, but brown to golden most of the time) and oak trees, either standing individually or as part of large oak forests. When I came to this spot, where I have stopped to photograph before, I found the meadows in that transitional state between the remaining greens of this year's (meager) spring moisture and browns of California's summer.

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Tags:   sierra nevada foothills grassland grass oak trees green spring season meadow creek rocks forest landscape nature california usa north america stock license print


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