Fall 2012 Photo Tour

It took awhile between the decline of film (I put my old “good” camera away some years ago) and the “jump point” for digital.

The jump point is the place on a graph where the line representing the quality of digital imaging keeps going up and up, and the line representing the ever-decreasing price for that quality, cross. Where the two subjective lines cross is the point where I “have to” jump back in. I’m not sure exactly when they crossed, but they did, and I jumped! I grabbed myself a beautiful Canon SLR and a lovely piece of Canon glass (which most people call a lens).

After “playing” with it awhile (read: getting used to how it worked), and noticing we had exquisite fall colors this year, I waited until the weather was jusssst right, grabbed my bride to come along for the ride, and headed out:

Photo 12f750
The trees look like they carpet the hillsides. In a print, the greens really pop. (750) Now Available: Buy a Fine-Art Print of This Photo

The photos on this page were taken along Ouray County (Colo.) Rd. 7, which is a public road that passes through the bottom of clothing designer Ralph Lauren’s 17,000-acre ranch, just above Ridgway. It tops out at a National Forest trailhead at 9,000′ (2,750m). The scuttlebutt among the locals is that Ralph tried to take the road private. The county replied not only “no” but “no …sir!

Photo 12f774
Pure Colorado gold. The trees are Quaking aspens, if you didn’t already know that. (774) Now Available: Buy a Fine-Art Print of This Photo

It’s a gorgeous take-your-time drive, though you don’t really even need four-wheel drive this time of year.

Photo 12f777
The road presses ever-higher. (777) Now Available: Buy a Fine-Art Print of This Photo

A quick note about the photos: I haven’t done anything to them to change the color, or even crop them. I just reduced the size (to about 11% of the original) for display here. I shoot raw on my Canon, giving me about 24MB file sizes, and a 5,184×3,456 image. I took 250 photos this trip (yes, exactly!)

Photo 12f797
I was “iffy” looking at this one on the computer screen. But when I had it printed, it was a Wow! — so much so I had 1,000 greeting cards printed with this image, which came out great. (797) Now Available: Buy a Fine-Art Print of This Photo
Or: Buy Greeting Cards with This Photo

The next one was an obvious “Wow!” from the start, and was also made into (1,000, again) greeting cards:

Photo 12f828
The panorama: meadow, hillsides, and mountain, with a halo of sky providing focus. This is my favorite shot of the day, and I had this one printed large for my living room. My favorite part is the little specks of gold at the base of the mountain: clumps of aspens standing out among the evergreens. (828) Now Available: Buy a Fine-Art Print of This Photo
Or: Buy Greeting Cards with This Photo

Prints do not have the copyright notice printed on the front (I sign that area instead). And, for that matter, neither do the cards: there is a paragraph of info on the back of the cards.

To say I was pleased with my first outing with my new camera would be quite the understatement. I’m very much looking forward to more trips around this gorgeous area with my new glass.

Photo 12f680
Yes, I am that much taller than the missus. We took this trip four days after our 11th anniversary. It was great to take an afternoon off.

And you certainly get the idea why Ralph Lauren would move here, eh? I may not be rich, but I sure like having a job that allows me to live anywhere I want, just like a rich guy — and this is where I want!

30 comments on “Fall 2012 Photo Tour

  1. Thanks for the pics. Spent one winter in Ouray aug-dec around ’83-84 and forgot how beautiful it is up there. Worked on some of the homes west of Ridgway up on the divide and have some great memories of the views on treks back and forth to Montrose and Telluride.

  2. The pictures are so beautiful! It reminds me of lovely drives I’ve taken in Utah canyons and Colorado mountains. I’ve always loved the colors of autumn. I’ll go back up to see about possibly ordering pictures. Thank you for sharing them with us.

    • I assume you’re talking about the greeting cards. Not anytime soon: it’s a pretty big investment to get them printed, both in printing cost and storage, and then it takes quite some time for them to trickle out, pushing break-even way down the road (let alone any profits). Maybe in a couple of years I’ll have enough to do it with!

  3. Great landscape shots, and the picture of you and the misses was sweet. My husband and I are the same height, although since he had his stroke, his frozen neck doesn’t let him stand up quite as tall as he used to, so I’m about an inch or two taller, visually.

  4. Randy,

    Your work is beautiful, and I love “the road presses ever-higher” photo — simply wow!

    • Thanks, Lawrence. The print is boggling compared to the computer-based photo, too. It truly is awesome, in the correct sense of the word, to stand in such a place and look around.

  5. Love these photos, Randy! And I love your part of the country. My husband and I usually make an annual trip up there around Labor Day, but we’re thinking of taking our next trip a bit later to catch the Fall color. When did you shoot these?

    • September 25, which was a bit late in the colors, believe it or not. They come and go early in the high country.

  6. I grew up in western Colorado and these photos have made me really homesick. Thank you for a glimpse of home again.

  7. Love the colors in these photos! I would love to visit your part of the country and do some photo hunting like this as well. Have you also purchased Adobe Lightroom? Now that you have crossed over to the digital world and have some good glass Lightroom is a fun product to help you make adjustments and fine tune the color when needed. Danger is you might spend so much time doing this you forget to work!

      • You might want to take another look at Lightroom its a great tool to organize your photos — especially since you take a lot of great photos.

        Anyway, another product to consider, if you don’t already use it, is Photomatix to create HD images. Some of your landscapes would be especially striking in HD. Basically you set your camera to take three pics — one under, one normal, and one over exposed. Then Photomatix stitches the three together to produce an amazing image.

          • Yes, photoshop does HDR but there are plugins and free standing programs that offer much better control of the HDR process. The trick is to not over do it so that it looks processed. Same with retouching people photos, you can take 20 years off, reshape faces, eyes and all but if it doesnt look “right” it is a fail.
            Nice shots, keep at it.

  8. These photos are gorgeous. So different from north Florida, where everything is shades of green, with gray when it is raining, then colorful and beautiful when the azaleas and dogwoods are blooming. I wouldn’t give up my home, but your pictures make me want to visit yours. 🙂

  9. Beautiful pictures. I don’t have wall space for prints and don’t send many cards, but am wondering if you would sell copies of the digital files for my screen saver.

    • Thanks much. But no: I have to draw the line somewhere, and releasing high-resolution digital files into the wild is over the line.

  10. I very much enjoyed your recent photos of the view from your office/home. Snæfell means Snowy Mountain or Snow Rock (which of course you know, but it might be unknown to those of your readers less familiar with Scandinavian languages;-)).

    I too like to stay up late (last walk with the dog about 1.30 AM and then sleep til about 8 AM). Contrary to you I do manage to view a lot of sunrises from late November til late January. From late May til mid-July I see them too, but before going to bed. That’s an advantage from living ub rgw the German-Danish border area. We have very short days in winter and white nights during the summer, but alas not as tantalizing a nature as yours. I will not tell you how much I envy you, because that will just make you relish your luck too much.

    I see the time in my comment noted as 3:42 pm. Actually here it is 23:42. I did not realize the time difference was that much.

  11. What amazing vistas! Entrancing and Enchanting.

    So much so that I probably would have forgotten to take the pictures

Comments are closed.