Eighteen years ago to this day, my family and I were all piled into the car, driving north from southern Los Angeles toward San Jose, to see my sister graduate from her first alma mater. As we hustled along on the interstate, I noticed something odd alongside the road up ahead – color! Normally, this section of California is just an undulating mix of ochres, umbers, and siennas — with maybe a little bit of dusty green mixed in for variety. But not this time. No, this time there were shimmering purples and violets, bright cadmium yellows, and luminous oranges.
It was a superbloom! I hesitate to call a superbloom rare – because that term is so overused these days – but this was the first time I’d ever seen it in over four decades, and I was completely blown away by just how much the bright colors were exploding in the hills above us.
Because we were on a tight schedule, we only stopped long enough for a few shots before hurrying on to our final destination, but it was enough. And later this image was entered into a competition and printed in a small publication with a circulation of 58 thousand subscribers. A brief stop that was well worth the effort!
Photo info: Springtime superblooms Gorman Hills Flower Fields Gorman, California May 2003 Canon PowerShot G3 digicam
Long ago – in another lifetime and a different career – I worked in the multi-image industry, as part of a small, seven-person company that won many of the top awards in world-wide international competition. The image above was one of the stills that we crafted for a 1983 presentation we created for Comdial Corporation, a telephone manufacturing company that was based in Charlottesville, Virginia. For this image, I created all of the line work, the many Rubylith overlays (one for each element), shot and processed the numerous positive and negative 8×10 Kodalith mask films (two for each element) – which were then shot on 35mm slide film as individual elements with a FOROX rostrum camera and combined in-camera for the final completed image. A lot of time, effort, and work for just one image – and all done before computer graphics had arrived on the scene.
Photo info: Still from a presentation created for Comdial Corporation Slidemaker Productions Richmond, Virginia 1983 Kodak Ektachrome 100 film Nikon 50/2.0 lens FOROX rostrum camera and animation stand
Every once in awhile I get lucky. In this particular case, I was approached many years ago about the use of one of my images for the face of a CD and the interior of the related CD album – entitled “You’re Welcome” – for the music group, Poor Blue. I had posted the image on one of my old blogs, the graphic designer working for the group stumbled across it, contacted me about possibly using it for the band, and the rest is history.
The image they chose was one that I had originally shot in color, but I didn’t care for how it looked – so I converted it to black and white, and was pleased with the results. You can see the rest of the related images below.
This particular locomotive – the Durango & Silverton Railroad #478 (2-8-2) – was removed from active service in late 2016. It is currently on static display in Durango, Colorado, and is awaiting an overhaul sometime in the future.