OP Home > Locations > North America > Big Landscapes & Intimate Details


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Big Landscapes & Intimate Details

The towering peaks and abstract close-ups of Colorado photographer Tad Bowman

Labels: Locations
This Article Features Photo Zoom

Bowman is exceptionally talented with his use of color, finding repeating patterns in the geology of his landscapes and detail shots, as well as in the color scheme of the natural world. He employs color not only as part of the subject matter, but also as a way to help him segment and divide his composition with graphical lines that help to keep the eye of his viewer within the frame. Above: "Sopris Sunrise".
Most of his work is done on Canon L series lenses, primarily the EF 16-35mm ƒ/2.8L II, EF 24-70mm ƒ/2.8L II and EF 70-200mm ƒ/2.8L II IS zoom. "I try whenever I can to shoot atƒ/8, you know, to hit the sweet spot," he says.

Bowman lives in Colorado, and for the most part, his work is centered there, but he also has experimented quite successfully with a couple of biannual trips to the "alien" environment of the American Southwest. It's the variety of abstract landscapes that have hooked him, although he admits he hadn't thought he would be so happy to be exploring the desert.

"I'd say in the past four to five years, when I go out there, and I see in one hour, all these abstract shapes and patterns, and then I go south maybe another 30 minutes, and see something completely different, maybe white sandstone in all these other abstract shapes—it's like being in a candy store!

"Your brain is working full time trying to figure out how to capture it in such a way to where I can create some order from all of it; it's sort of like sensory overload. That's the true-blue Southwest—all the abstracts, all the possibilities, all the varieties for the composition. On top of that, you're out there near Moab, and for me, I love mountains. So, that's the best of both worlds. Sometimes maybe I'll even find some compositions with that nice red rock in the foreground and complement it with a nice mountain backdrop."

Bowman has played around photographically in Idaho and Wyoming, and he's looking forward to turning his eye to the Tetons there, although he also admits that a phobia of grizzly bears probably will prevent him from fully exploring the areas he would like to capture. It's surprising to see absolutely no wildlife in his portfolio, but he quickly laughs, saying, "Most of the time, I'd rather view it than to actually pursue it. People ask me for portraits, too. It's just not my gig." Bowman has a special connection with landscapes. "It's just as pure and simple as that," he says.

"Obviously, with everything that goes on in life, things can move pretty quickly, and you know once I'm out and about, things slow down," adds Bowman. "And I find that once your mind slows down, you're able to connect, and when you're able to connect, there's a message that's being delivered to you. That's what it is for me. There's a huge amount of peace just being there; you understand a little bit about your place in the order of things."


Add Comment


Popular OP Articles