God Rays Sedona ArizonaOK, no lighting in these images. The storm had started to dissipate (or so I thought). I had decided to head home not finding any lighting to capture. As I came out of the grocery store and started home I saw this developing. Quickly I drove up the airport road to the Vortex Trail parking lot. Oh My! It was getting better and better! Brighter and brighter!

I was in a hurry now not to lose the light. Quickly grabbing my camera pack and tripod I only hiked a 100 feet away from the car to an opening where I had an unobstructed view. Timing is everything and I was already feeling behind on getting setup. A few quick single shots and I realized I needed a panorama series of shots to sew together to show this off properly. More setup and changes…  The God Rays got brighter…

I think I shot 5 sets of panorama images before lighting fired up over the other end of the airport. A warning shot! Time to pack it in and get back in the car and to safety!

It is said that the best camera is the one you have with you. If I had not had my Canon 5D MIII with the gear I needed to properly do a panorama I would not have this image. Being a photographer you have to follow that old Boy Scout rule: “Be Prepared”. Ask my wife… The camera gear is always with us.

Getting the shot is part timing, part-time spent being out and ready. Intuition plays a huge role in my decisions to go or not to go out. Years of experience and knowing my local weather and locations helps too.

But it can happen anytime. It happened while coming out of a restaurant in Moab UT after dark. Lighting over Arches National Park. I told Faith she was going to be a “photography widow” for a few hours while I headed up to get the shot(s). Fortunately she is super supportive and understanding. An iPhone helps so she and I can talk and keep in touch.

Nature has its own timing. It does not care about human clocks, work hours or sleep time. I keep odd hours when needed.

Prints available Here: Fine Art America

 

Click on an image to see it larger:

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