Burned

I had such big plans for this image. I had gone out to shoot fully expecting flames (I even brought a cup of water to put them out), but instead the roses just smoked for the most part (even though they had been dry for over a year). I had debated even editing them, let alone posting. But, as part of my growth as an artist I am trying to learn to roll with the “failed” shoots and turn them into something even when they don’t go according to plan. I have been in a huge artistic rut for most of the summer, and this is, in a small way at least, my attempt at getting out of it.

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Colorado in July (Part 2)

Welcome back! Hopefully you all didn’t get bored with the first post since there are still more images to share. These are my favorite images of the trip, so in my opinion it was all worth it. Without further ado, enjoy part 2!

Friday morning we woke up early and drove to Golden, Colorado to try climbing at the Golden Cliffs area. The hike up to the cliff was incredibly beautiful, and the view once we got there was just as amazing. From the cliff side we could see almost all of Golden, including the Coors Brewery, mountains in almost every direction, and Denver in the distance; near perfection I would dare to say.

It is always interesting when going to a new climbing area; it tends to be a slow process to begin climbing as you try to get oriented according to the guide-book and figure out what routes are what. We ended up on some rather sketchy routes to begin the day, and encountered very polished rock (which we later read in about on mountain project). After finishing a particularly bad route Scott and I were both frustrated and angry, but he spontaneously decided to climb the route right next to it before we headed back to Denver. The route ended up being the hardest route he has ever lead climbed, and a terrific one to end the day on.

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Saturday we managed to wake up even earlier, and again headed to the Golden Cliffs. Our friends that were in Colorado Springs drove up to climb with us for a bit, and despite some serious pain due to my elbow injury we had a great morning of climbing. A storm rolled in right as we were wrapping up a route, so I grabbed some photographs quick and then we sprinted down to our cars with thunder exploding around us the entire time.

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The four of us grabbed lunch in Golden while the storm passed, and then Scott and I made a snap decision to drive up to the summit of Mt. Evans, a 14,000 foot mountain near by. It is a narrow, winding road to the top. I was driving and was terrified while doing so (you see, I terrify me despite the fact that I climb). We drove through a hail storm, some rain, along with some sunshine while driving up. When we got to the end of the road we hopped out of the car, noted the crazy effect of the altitude on us, and started to hike around. The road takes you nearly to the top; there is just a short hike to get to the actual summit. Near the parking lot there is an A-frame building where the first high altitude research ever done took place. Scott was all giddy since that is something he hopes to pursue, so we hiked around there for a bit and then headed up the short trail to the summit. While we were at the summit the clouds opened up just right, and I got some truly amazing light. I have never been in the alpine environment during golden hour before; it was one of the most magical things I have witnessed. I have already vowed to go back when I can spend more time there and explore a bit more for the perfect shot.

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I had a guy at the summit snap a photograph of me and Scott quick, so that there would be proof of us being there together 🙂

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Sadly this was our last night in Colorado. The next morning we woke up to drive back to Kansas; not nearly as exciting as finding a new place to climb and explore in the mountains.

Colorado in July (Part 1)

The week before I was in Lexington to shoot Darren and Mary’s wedding I traveled out to Colorado with Scott for a week of vacation. The first part (Monday-Wednesday) of the trip was spent in Colorado Springs with some friends, and then the rest of the week we were in Denver with Scott’s parents. We managed to climbed every single day that we were there, in a few different locations. It was an absolutely incredible week and I am already looking forward to our next trip out there. I will be breaking the trip up into two posts to avoid one painfully long post.

As I mentioned above, the first part of the week we were in Colorado Springs. We were able to climb for two days in the Red Rocks Canyon Open Space, which was a very different from anything I had climbed before. The rock there is sandstone, so every hold is covered in sand making traction a bit tenuous in spots. The routes we climbed weren’t very vertical and holds were sparse (especially the starts), which really forced you to trust your feet (even though it felt like you would slip off everything), and focus on balance and smooth movements. And, for those of you who may know climbing terms, it forced us to become professionals at mantling. It took a bit to get used to, but was still great fun and was an incredibly beautiful area.

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135web 139webAfter our second day of climbing in Colorado Springs we headed to Denver to meet up with Scott’s parents. Thursday morning (which happened to be the 4th of July) Scott and I headed out to the Clear Creek Canyon area to try to climb a little before festivities that night with his family. Clear Creek was vastly different from the Red Rocks area. Just getting to the wall was a bit of an adventure; it was a steep scramble (a 4th class scramble to be exact) to the wall, with a road and a river raging below. Instead of slick sandstone it was blocky granite, which was kind of a relief for me. We didn’t have much time there unfortunately, and due to an elbow injury I wasn’t able to climb much anyways. I also didn’t take many photographs at this particular spot (and I didn’t really get any of the wall that we climbed), other than quick shots before we left.

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It is tough to see, but there are 3 giant eagles' nests up there.

It is tough to see, but there are 3 giant eagles’ nests up there.

That night we went to a Rockies game at Coors Field. It was an incredible stadium, and the perfect place to be on the Fourth of July. In front of us sat a beautiful baseball field, to the right a stunning mountain range; perfection in my mind. We also watched the fireworks from the stadium and even though our view was blocked by part of the building it was still one amazing night.

214webThat’s all for now though, so be on the lookout for the second installment very soon!

Darren + Mary

A few weeks ago I drove from Kansas to Lexington, Kentucky to shoot the beautiful wedding of Darren and Mary. When I was in Lexington going to school for my undergrad I worked with Darren, and I was so excited when they asked me to be a part of their big day. The wedding took place on a beautiful summer afternoon, and was probably the most laid back wedding I have shot yet. It was so very obvious that these two are completely in love with each other and it was such a joy to be there to capture it. So, without further ado, meet Mr. and Mrs. Henderson!

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Congratulations once again to Darren and Mary!