For those of you in the LA/Pasadena area, you’ll be excited to hear that I’m showing 10 pieces in an upcoming Art show in Pasadena featuring 30 artists (local and international). Below are some details, if you can make it out let me know – I’ll be around!

Show! Opening Reception:
Friday, August 21st, 6:30-11pm

Dates: August 21,22,28 & 29
Time: 6:30pm – 11pm

32 S. Raymond Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91106


Alright, now on to some images… Finally! It’s been a while since my last post, but I’m glad so many of you enjoyed it – I really appreciate your kind comments. Given my lack of time this will be a rather brief post, but the images are always the most important part – and there’s plenty of those. Earlier this week I returned from a trip to Colorado, which was mostly for my ‘day job’, but I did squeeze in a few days to play in the mountains. Originally I had planned to do a 2-3 night backpack trip with Colorado friend and photographer Aleksandra Miesak, but due to unfortunate circumstances (ie. her twisted ankle), that didn’t quite work out. But, we still managed to have a fantastic time, and a productive one at that. The first evening we drove up to the summit of Mt. Evans – 14,264 ft high – yes, you can drive up to the top of a 14’er! On the way up we encountered a group of playful and cooperative mountain goats. The low angled sun and availability of dark backgrounds made it possible to try something inspired by one of my favorite wildlife photographers, Miguel Lasa.

“Running from the Dark” ~ Mountain Goats, Mt Evans, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 100-400mm, handheld
Exposure: iso 100, f/10, 1/400th sec
Notes: I purposefully underexposed the images from this series, and then in processing brought the exposure down even further, in addition to a significant boost in contrast. Since they were moving rather quickly, to get the right composition I had to stitch this image with another taken later in the sequence to add a little space on the right for balance.

Once the sun sank below the cliffs, we moved on to the summit. Incredible view from up there, yet none of the wide angle scenes completely caught my fancy. I ended up with these two images taken, again, with my telephoto. I believe you’ll see many of the images I brought home have a slightly different style than my last several posts. Perhaps it was Colorado, perhaps something else? Who knows. In any case, I hope you like the variations and experiments – let me know!

“Stone Spirit” ~ American Crow, Mt Evans, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 100-400mm, handheld
Exposure: iso 800, f/6.3, 1/1600

“Cradle the Moon” ~ From Mt. Evans, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 100-400mm, handheld
Exposure: iso 800, f/11, 1/1000
Notes: yes, I should have remember to stop down from iso 800, I could have shot this at iso 200 1/250th with less noise, oh well.

The following day I headed out to the Rawah Wilderness for a one night backpacking trip. It was great to spend some time in the Rockies, as I had never been there before. I find every mountain range has its own character, and the Rockies are certainly different from the Sierras. Once above tree line the peaks just roll from one to the next with surprisingly smooth and green transitions; very different from the rugged rock pile peaks of the Sierras you saw in my previous posts this summer. Anyways, after arriving at Island Lake I took a trip around most of the lake to do some scouting, and in addition to finding a lovely spot I returned to for sunrise, I ran into this cute little Pika.

“Pika(boo)” ~ Pika, Rawah Wilderness, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 100-400mm, handheld
Exposure: iso 800, f/5.6, 1/160
Processing: Double processed raw file to bring out the shadows and tame the highlights of the granite.

“Peace in Rawah” ~ Rawah Wilderness, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 16-35mm mkII, tripod, 2-stop hard GND
Exposure: iso 100, f/16, 3.2 sec
Processing/Notes: With all the beautiful mountain sunrise/sunset images that get taken every day, it’s hard to make such a scene your own (even if it’s 8 miles from a remote trailhead in a seldom imaged wilderness). So, I like to have a little fun with such ‘classic’ scenes. In this instance I combined a little luck (ie. clouds) with some creativity both in compositional selection (I was particularly drawn to the diversity and balance of the foreground stones) with a few other things.. On the way over from my nearby camp I ran across this beautifully twisted log. It was loose, so I figured I’d bring it along in case I could use it in my comp – I think it added a further dimension to the image. As the sun slowly rose, the clouds peaked in their color and form a few minutes before the alpen glow hit the peaks. I took an exposure for the sky then, and another when the peaks began to glow. In processing I carefully balanced the two to where I found it looked natural, but with much more color and depth than either exposure would have given me. Had I not mentioned these two points, I doubt anyone would have called me on it, but I figured I’d share to promote honesty, discussion, and learning. Whether such creative latitude is for you or not, you can decide yourself, I personally find it allows much more opportunity for unique expression, and ends up being more fun for me. In the end, this was not all that far off from any single moment that happened, so I still believe it is an honest representation of the scene and experience.

“Alpine Rocket” ~ Rawah Wilderness, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 24-105mm, tripod
Exposure: iso 100, f/13, 1/8th sec

The following morning we made a brief trip to Rocky Mountain National Park, leaving home at 3am to drive into the Rockies and hike 3 miles to Helene Lake before sunrise. We made it, just in time. Due to the light winds the reflection in the lake wasn’t particularly glassy, so I explored the area (hastily, as the sun was rising quickly!). These wind battered and tortured trees caught my interest, and lit up like gold in the early morning light.

“Naked in the Sun” ~ Rocky Mountain National Park, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 16-35mm mkII, 2-stop hard GND, polarizer, tripod
Exposure: iso 100, f/14, 1.6 sec
Processing: I used a variety of exposures, one with the grad filter, another without and the same settings, another with drastically reduced exposure, and a fourth using my hat to block some of the flare. By combining them all in photoshop I was able to control the dynamic range as well as the flare, all with minimal suffering from motion artifacts in the moving trees.

And lastly, I’ll leave you an image taken on a day hike in the Mt. Zirkel Wilderness.

“Stony Valentine” ~ Mt. Zirkel Wilderness, CO
The Tech: Canon 5D2, 24-105mm, tripod
Exposure: iso 100, f/20, 1.3 sec

7 Comments to “Rocky Colorado”

  1. Lol06 says:

    Always your comments are very interesting.
    Good luck for your show, for me it’s very too far… (France) :-((

  2. JesseSpeer says:

    Stone Spirit is AWESOME. True art. You ought to share that one with Guy.

  3. Marissa says:

    I very much appreciate all your comments on how you obtained the final image. I think that the honesty is important. Even if some disagree with your style, they cannot deny that it produces some beautiful images. You said that you still feel that the moment was captured, and I think that is what is important. Our eyes perceive the moment differently from a camera, and one could argue that an image combining several different snaps of time is more true to the experience of being at the occurrence.

    The minimal style you seem to have in this series is awesome. Congratulations on your show! I might be there, as I have just relocated from Ithaca to LA.

  4. aswirly says:

    Such beautiful images! Wow! I jsut love pikaboo…
    Congrats on your show 🙂

  5. aaronburdick says:

    Hi Floris. I really love “Stony Valentine”! All your work is so impressive. I am hoping to make it out to your show on the 28th or the 29th. It will be nice to meet you in person.

  6. Mark says:

    You have some really beautiful work Floris. I am happy to have discovered it. Thank you for the inspiration.

  7. Thank you for your comments about how you made those photographs, Floris.
    It´s a pleasure to enjoy your work! Thank you.
    Leo from Patagonia argentina.