Yesterday's Light

Images in Space and Time

The Last Clicks

Sedona Fire (4728)

Well, not the very last shutter clicks, but damn close.  Aside from the long drive home, Sedona, AZ was the last place we visited.  It was magnificent – as usual – except for the fact that it was boringly sunny.  And I say that from a photographic point of view.  If you live in western NY, where the snow is still flying from time to time, “sunny” is definitely not boring.  Warm and sunny is especially not boring.  But sunshine in the desert tends to be very bright and contrasty.  If making photographs is one of your goals, you’d like to see some clouds and shadows.  Something to dampen things down a bit.  Something just a little bit “atmospheric”.

For most of this trip we really didn’t get that.  We got “clear and sunny”.  I would have loved to have seen a desert storm.  Alas, no such luck.  I still enjoyed the bright warm days, but the pictures ain’t going to be classics.

On the last evening, though, Barb called me out onto the deck that surrounded our hotel.  Clouds had appeared just as the sun was setting.  Hey, clouds is clouds.  In the desert you take what you get.  And overall it wasn’t too bad.  The above image is mine, taken near the end of the “light show”.  The cloud was basically circular in shape and its base had turned bright red.  It also had what appeared to be streamers coming out of the top.  It kind of looked like an upside down fire.

The best image Barb took (in my opinion) was just before the red coloration started.

Sedona Fire 2 (582, G16)

For whatever reason, the clouds in this image look ominous and threatening.  They weren’t, of course, but what the heck.  They made a nice image.

After a few days of driving, we’re close to home.  The clouds outside are real and and much more threatening.  Thunderstorms, lightning, hail – all that good stuff.  And there’s a high wind warning in effect for tomorrow in Rochester (with showers).  Welcome home. 


11 Responses to “The Last Clicks”

  1. e. Brooks

    While both photos are good and interesting, in my opinion, I, like you, like Barb’s photo a bit more — for the reasons you gave. Even having to put up with the “boring” sunny and warn weather, it sounds like you two had a great time, as usual, enjoying the southwest. I’m looking forward to seeing more of your photos when you have time to process and post them.

    • Paul Maxim

      Yeah, as usual there’s a bunch of them. Although most aren’t too interesting (like the ones taken in midday sun!). But we did have a hell of a lot of fun. I’m assuming that you and Bonnie will get to some of these places eventually – I can’t wait to hear what you think of some of these spots. Just don’t get there in the middle of summer! The crowds are horrific……

      • e. Brooks

        Yeah, we’re getting a later start then I wanted due to this Florida residency thing and we’ve got friends in the northeast inviting us to visit — so, we’ve discussed doing a northeast thing this summer and perhaps doing a winter arrival to the southwest. No decision yet but we’ll need to decide this month.

        Glad you had a great time!!

        • Paul Maxim

          It goes without saying that if your northeast swing brings you anywhere close to western NY, let me know. We’d love to see you guys again and get a “tour” of your new home. Maybe if I see one of those things up close I won’t get so aggravated when I have to pass them on the interstate!

        • e. Brooks

          Paul, you can bet we’ll let you know if we’re in the area. It would be nice to visit and I’d be happy to give you the grand tour…should take about 2 mins. 🙂

  2. Kathryn J

    Complaining about the sun? Hmmmmm. I’m trying to come up with a non-profane comment so that I can actually leave it here and it might stay. It has been gray all week here. I would

    • Paul Maxim

      Yes, it was a little tongue-in-cheek, but cruel I guess. We just made it to Hagerstown, MD and rediscovered the northeast. It was in the 80’s today in Morehead, KY and 48 when we got to Hagerstown. Tomorrow Rochester. I hear rain and wind are in the forecast. If we could, I’d head back to Arizona. We actually spent some time looking around Flagstaff. I love that place – and it’s close to all kinds of great places. Maybe someday if we don’t get too old…….

      We were going to get a picture of that restaurant you ate at in Sedona, but we never did. One of the nights we were there we ate at a really good pizza place just across the street. Anyway, maybe we’ll bring some of that sunshine (and warmth) back with us. Barb will go nuts if it stays cold and gray and wet.

  3. John

    I’d take either shot – they’re both nice. One of these days I hope to have my stuff together enough to make some sort of SW road trip. Just doesn’t seem possible these days… That’s why I rely on your photographs for my SW fix!

    • Paul Maxim

      Thanks, John. Actually, that’s what I call it, too – my southwest “fix”. I bought a refrigerator type magnet out there this year that says: “the desert is calling and I must go”. I never buy those kinds of things but I couldn’t resist this one. But don’t wait too long to go there!

  4. TomDills

    Looks like you’ve had a good trip, Paul. Looking forward to seeing more photos as you get caught up. And I know exactly what you mean about those boring blue skies – great Chamber of Commerce weather but not so great for photographers!

    • Paul Maxim

      Yes, getting caught up is always the trick. I haven’t been keeping tabs on other people’s sites or news or much of anything else. At least I won’t have to worry about “boring blue skies” after we get home (today). We don’t get them very often in western NY!


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