Assignments: July 2012

Photo Assignments From The Editor Of Outdoor Photographer Magazine
This Article Features Photo Zoom

Photographer: Tom Lussier
Location: Pebble Beach, California
Equipment: Nikon D300, AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm ƒ/3.5-5.6 ED VR, polarizer, Really Right Stuff tripod and ballhead

Situation: The lone cypress tree is an icon of Pebble Beach. My wife and I were traveling from Los Angeles to San Francisco, and we knew we’d have to take the time to stop here. Since we were on a fairly tight schedule, I knew we’d hit this spot at midday, which would yield less than ideal conditions for shooting. To pick up the beautiful details and texture in the shaded areas, I bracketed an additional exposure, then combined the two into a single image. Although famous for being the lone cypress, I preferred this angle, which shows its closest neighbors as well.

My weekly Assignments have grown to become a popular part of the OP website. The galleries themselves show a wealth of beautifully crafted, thoughtful and inspiring photography, but Assignments is much more than just display. It’s a place where like-minded photographers can come and show their work, and comment and engage in dialogue with one another. There’s no shortage of either photography or opinions about photography online. What I find to be special about the OP community is the elevated level of the discourse.

In addition to the regular weekly Assignments, I recently put up an Assignment dedicated to time-lapse videos. I’m doing more time-lapse shooting myself, and I’m interested in seeing how you’re experimenting with them. The time-lapse Assignment doesn’t have a closing date, so you can submit your videos at anytime. I’ll feature one of the time-lapse videos on the OP homepage every week.
—Christopher Robinson, Editor

Photographer: Laura Vu
Location: Upper Ice Lake Basin, San Juan Mountains, Colorado
Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon EF 17-40mm ƒ/4L, 0.9 soft graduated neutral-density filter
Situation: I call this photograph “Mirror Reflection.” This has to be one of the most difficult trails I ever hiked, as I had to climb five miles one way to this 12,200-foot-elevation lake. It took me four hours to hike up to the Upper Ice Lake Basin, and the last mile was a grueling 1,000 feet of elevation gain, which is very difficult for this mere mortal Texas girl. The combination of lack of sleep, air and water made it even more challenging, but I think it’s all worth it for this single snapshot alone. If I had to do this over again, I would have backpacked up there like I originally planned because on the hike down in the dark, I nearly collapsed from exhaustion.

Photographer: Steve Perry
Location: Golden Canyon Area, Death Valley National Park, California
Equipment: Nikon D3X, Zeiss 35mm ƒ/2, Gitzo tripod, cable release

Situation: I was on my annual trip to Death Valley and was facing a clear, boring sky for an evening shot. Rather than throw in the towel, I decided to try another approach and shoot some star trails, but where? Then I remembered something about this area in Golden Canyon. I had looked at this scene over and over as a possible shot, and thought it could look great with the right sky. I finally put two and two together, and this photo was the result.

This Article Features Photo Zoom

Photographer:Steven Hirsch
Location: Cathedral Rock, Sedona, Arizona
Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon EF 24-70mm ƒ/2.8L, Benro tripod

Situation: The work of Ansel Adams inspired me to create this image. I hiked through the water into the middle of this reflection pool at sundown, set up the tripod low against the reflecting pool and waited for the reflection and shadows to be perfect. As the sun continued to set, everything came into place. Good luck, I suppose, but luck happens when opportunity meets preparation.

Photographer: Kandie K. Sweeney
Location: Cox Arboretum, Dayton, Ohio
Equipment: Nikon D80, AF-S DX Nikkor 18-135mm ƒ/3.5-5.6G IF-ED

Situation: This photo was taken on a bright, sunny day with the sun lighting the tulip from the stem area. The sun was so bright that it produced a glow inside the tulip, which really makes the flower take on a light all its own. I had a very slight breeze causing a little bit of blur.