There’s been a lot of talk online the past couple of years about photographing the icons. Heck, I even blogged about it a year or so ago. And the sentiment seems to be running towards avoiding iconic locations where you have to battle for tripod position with multitudes of other photographers. The Maroon Bells in Colorado come to mind…and Mesa Arch in Utah. Both of those places have become arenas for combat photography. I joke about the tripod holes being worn in the rock at Mesa Arch but it’s almost true. And if you plan on shooting sunrise at the Bells you’d best get there 3 hours early or you’ll be parking a mile or more down the road and walking in.
When I blogged about photographing icons last year I sort of hinted that I’m going to start looking for new stuff to photograph. Don’t get me wrong: If I am in Moab and it looks like the clouds are going to make for an epic sunrise, I’m headed for Mesa Arch. If I’m in the Aspen area and can get there early enough, it’s the Bells for me. Granted, I’ll be looking for that special light, the special composition, the perfect exposure that will set my images apart from untold hundreds of thousands of similar images from the same spot. I’ll also be spending more time searching out those intimate detail shots that seem to fuel my creative spirit.
With that in mind, this weekend when almost every photographer I know is heading into the mountains in search of aspen gold, I’m heading east to….(drum roll please) western Kansas. I’ve seen some images of rock formations south of Quinter that look pretty special. I’m also going to find some abandoned farms that will serve as foreground subjects for night sky photographs. I wanted to do some of that 2 weeks ago but the full moon was so bright you couldn’t even see many stars much less photograph them.
So I’ll be there, roaming the prairies of western Kansas, looking to find my own icons. And if you don’t mind having to set up and shoot a hundred yards or so from the nearest photographer, come on along. I think it’s going to be a great trip.