Oregon Landscape Photography News
This blog section is a way for me to share images and adventures with friends, family, and fellow professional photographers. Most of these adventures take place in the wilderness area near Bend, Oregon, the heart of Central Oregon. Many of the images you will see here were originally captured with a large format camera, as were all of the images on my website. Over the past several years, I’ve accumulated thousands of very good photos, most of which are not available for purchase. I’ve found that sharing my work is one of the most rewarding parts of being a photographer and this news section will hopefully provide me with a more efficient way of sharing my work with others. In addition to sharing Oregon Landscape photographs that may not be available on my website, the informality of this blog will allow me to share information and anecdotes about my photographic adventures on a more personal level. I hope you enjoy it!
Friends and family of mine are well aware that my wonderful daughter, Emma, attended the Highland Magnet School at Kenwood, located just blocks away from our home in Bend, Oregon. Highland is a K-5th grade school that incorporates the Scottish Storyline method of teaching. I can’t say enough positive things about this wonderful school and the Storyline Method. The Storyline method deeply immerses students in specific themes and incorporates such fundamentals such as reading, writing, social studies, math and science into these themes. Some of my favorite Storylines were the National Parks, Famous Artists, and the winter Olympics. The level of creativity and commitment practiced by the teachers at Highland is astounding. When I was recently approached to contribute a framed print to help with fund-raising for the Storyline at Highland, I jumped at the chance. Below is “Fourth Of July”, a beautiful fine art photograph of Oregon’s Mt. Jefferson which I captured July 4th, 2014.
The Print is 20 inches x 24 inches, it is double matted, dry mounted, and framed with the hand made cherry wood frames that I craft in my wood shop. The good folks at Highland will be selling raffle tickets to win this beautiful print. For more information about buying raffle tickets to win this fine art photograph, please visit the Highland Elementary PTO website.
I’d like to extend a special thanks to the amazing staff at Highland. Their emphasis on community,education, respect and responsibility has helped to give my daughter a phenomenal foundation from which to live her life. Highland staff, you are truly appreciated!
As many of you know, I live in Bend, Oregon, the hub of Central Oregon and One of the most amazing regions of the United States. As a professional landscape photographer, there are countless photo opportunities in the Bend area so leaving Central Oregon for work reasons can be hard to justify. A quick visit to my online Landscape portfolios, will show the phenomenal natural beauty and diversity of the Central Oregon area. Despite having amazing diversity, Oregon has no answer for Washington’s Mt. Rainier National Park. Mt. Rainier is absolutely overwhelmingly huge and beautiful.
I’ve traveled to Mt. Rainier several times in hopes of capturing a photograph, just like the one you see here. This past summer, I got my wish! Beautiful clouds that are not covering Mt. Rainier, an amazing display of wildflowers with the overpowering Mt. Rainier as a dominant back-drop. For those of you who haven’t traveled to Mt. Rainier National Park, the Paradise area of the national park is located on the south side of Mt. Rainier. It offers excellent hiking trails at the base the mountain and an impressive visitors center and wonderful lodge. I shot from this location at sunset and at sunrise and Sunrise was far better light for my purposes. I captured the beautiful photograph of Mt. Rainier you see above with my large format film camera, allowing me to create the huge, exceptionally detailed fine art photographs which are my speciality. My first print of this Mt. Rainier image is on the way and I couldn’t be more excited. I hope to unveil this fine art photograph at the First Friday Art Walk in downtown Bend Oregon, at Patagonia of Bend. The show will be 2/6/15 from 5-8PM. Please stop by and visit me and my favorite new print of Mt. Rainier National Park. If you have questions about this print or if you’d like to place an order, please feel free to call me at 541-610-4815.
Thanks for visiting,
I’ve never done a year in review post before and frankly, the idea scared me. Not because I am not proud of my work, I am quite proud. My trepidation stemmed from the fact that, in most years, I don’t put out a lot of new work. Please don’t perceive this “lack of new work” as a lack of effort. I get into the back-country several times per week for most of the year, I just don’t find many wilderness scenes that I feel fit my portfolio. As I assessed my new work for the year, I realize that I did have lots of new beautiful, fine art prints and that I was actually very proud of them! The following image of Oregon’s Mt. Jefferson is one of my favorites from 2014 and it is a landscape photograph that can never be precisely duplicated.
1. Oregon’s Beautiful Mt. Jefferson, “Fourth of July”
There will be plenty of other beautiful images of Mt. Jefferson as it is a wonderful subject for landscape photographers but capturing lighting conditions like the ones seen in this beautiful fine art print of Mt. Jefferson, will take some phenomenal luck. I have never seen lenticular clouds stacked up over Oregon’s cascades like this except for this evening. Captured on the Fourth of July, 2014, this image of Mt. Jefferson is definitely one of my best of the year.
It seems that, during 2014, I was especially attracted to locations that for me, had a mystical and spiritual feeling. The following photo of the “Tamolitch Pool” on Oregon’s McKenzie River is definitely one of those spiritual locations. Amazingly blue water, cold springs and a gorgeous natural setting make this feel like Mother Nature’s cathedral. The Tamolitch Pool is definitely a bucket list hike for Oregon’s outdoor lovers.
2. “Tamolitch Pool” on Oregon’s McKenzie River
The Tamolitch Pool is a place that has a feel more than it has a look. The amazing clarity of its blue water, and old growth conifers framing this natural basalt amphitheater must be seen to be understood. For more information about Tamolitch Pool, visit here, Tamolitch pool hike.
Another new print that I introduced during 2014 was captured a little closer to my home in Bend. To be more precise, this beautiful photograph was captured about 22 miles from my home. Tumalo Mountain has long been a favorite of Back country snow riders who choose to avoid the lift lines of nearby Mt. Bachelor. In addition to being free to riders, Tumalo Mountain has what may be my favorite view of Mt. Bachelor. I’ve shot Mt. Bachelor countless times over the years but this was definitely my best winter photograph of Mt. Bachelor to date. It has been very popular print for my my fine art photography collectors and I even produced a poster from this image which can be purchased here, Mt. Bachelor Poster.
Mt. Bachelor is a beautiful photographic subject any time of year and winter is no exception. In addition to my beautiful poster of Mt.Bachelor, I also printed some lovely greeting cards of Mt. Bachelor that were derived from this new print of Mt. Bachelor.
Not far from Mt. Bachelor are the headwaters of Central Oregon’s magnificent Deschutes River which arises out of Little Lava Lake, located along the Cascade Lakes Highway, south of Bend. The Deschutes flows through several high elevation lakes as it gains speed as it flows North towards Bend. One of my favorite hiking and Photography destinations in the Bend area is the Deschutes River Trail, not far from Bend. It has many convenient trail heads for hiking and Mt. Biking adventures.
In its autumn glory, the Deschutes River Trail can be truly stunning and this new 2014 prints captures a bit of that glory. I love the flow patters in this image as well as the fall color.
I seem to have gone through a strong “Deschutes phase” during 2014 as I captured three new prints of the Deschutes during the past twelve months. Technically, the Upper Deschutes River lies between its headwaters and the town of Bend, the Middle Deschutes lies between the town of Bend and Lake Billy Chinook and the Lower Deschutes River is located between Lake Billy Chinook and the confluence of the Deschute River with the mighty Columbia River.
Below is another new print captured on the Middle Deschutes River. It capture much of what I feel embodies Central Oregon.
5. ‘Middle Deschutes River”
The Deschutes River, the snow covered Three Sisters Mountains, Bluebird skies along with arid desert canyons all help to personify Central Oregon’s topography and this new print captures them all in one image! While the “green season” is short along the Middle and Lower Deschutes, it is also quite beautiful! Although the Middle Deschutes River has dangerously low flow levels during summer the months, it gains volume as it flow north towards the Columbia. Below Lake Billy Chinook, the Lower Deschutes becomes one of the United States’ premier Steelhead Rivers. It also becomes very rugged, remote and beautiful. As any avid Oregon fly-fisherman can attest, the Lower Deschutes River can be quite mesmerizing any time of year but is especially so in spring.
6. “Lower Deschutes River”
I captured this special print at the height of the Lupine bloom, near the river city of Maupin. The gentle S- curve of the Lower Deschutes, warm morning light bathing the canyon walls and an eruption of spring wildflowers make for a welcome addition to My “Deschutes River Basin” collection. For a little more information about this image, visit this previous blog entry, Lower Deschutes River.
The following new print for 2014, “Abiqua Falls” is far from the Deschutes River Basin. Abiqua Falls lies in Oregon’s moist, green Willamette valley. Not far from the town of Silverton, Oregon. Abiqua Falls requires some adventure but it is well worth the effort. Abiqua Falls Print
7.” Abiqua Falls”
Although a bit distant from my base camp of Bend, Abiqua Falls is an excellent side adventure for Central Oregonians traveling to or from Portland. Abiqua Falls is found is a stunning natural basalt column amphitheater, laden with moss and rich with the aromas of organic matter. Both vertical and horizontal versions of this Abiqua Falls print are available and they are both beautiful.
Also located in the drainage basin for the Willamette River is one of my favorite destinations, Scott Lake. As a Bend Oregon Photographer, Scott Lake is a bucket -list destination. Scott Lake is beautiful during all seasons but especially so during Spring and Autumn, when the lake is no longer frozen, allowing for a reflection of the glorious Three Sisters Mountains. Most visitors to Central Oregon are more familiar with the traditional westward facing view of the Three Sisters Mountains but the view of The Three Sisters from the west and facing east is equally stunning, especially from Scott Lake.
8. “Scott Lake” and the Three Sisters
The snow covered Three Sisters Mountains, reflected is a placid, mist infused Scott Lake is one of my favorite new prints for 2014. As you may know, all of my Oregon fine art landscape photography is captured using my large format camera. My camera allows me to capture and create finely detailed, immaculate prints which exceed anything I could create with a digital camera. Unfortunately, my large format camera can be a bit…clunky. Composing a scene can be time consuming which is stressful, especially when magical light is fleeting. Not knowing if my exposure was appropriate for up to two weeks can be exasperating, which generates extra stress when I’m shooting a beautiful and unique scene, like this one of the Three Sisters and Scott Lake. I will never see the same clouds again, which makes me cherish my process and my successes along the way.
A scene from 2014 that was also quite fleeting is the following scene from the John Day Painted Hills. During special years, yellow Chaenactis and Bee Plants bloom in the Painted Hills of John Day is what is otherwise a technicolor desert wonderland
9. John Day Painted Hills, Golden Bee Plants
The clay-like formations at the Painted Hills unit of John Day are always otherworldly but golden bee plants(Cleome platycarpa) have a very limited bloom period, making this a rare new print of one of my favorite locations in the Oregon high desert.
The juxtaposition of the Painted Hills and the following print of Bend’s Tumalo Falls is a good illustration of how diverse Central Oregon landscapes can be. Only 10 minutes from Bend, the iconic Tumalo Falls could not be more beautiful nor could it be more different than the painted hills.
Perfect snowy detail, and excellent subject matter made for a great new Landscape photograph Of Tumalo Falls in winter.
Located near the Central Oregon community of Camp Sherman, the Metolius River is quite simply, one of my favorite places on earth. I’ve worked for two years trying to capture this exact image of the Metolius River and finally the photography gods cooperated! Metolius River.
11. Metolius River
One of my stated goals as a fine art photographer is to honor the beautiful places that I am lucky enough to explore. I enjoy the knowledge that those who aren’t fortunate enough to hike or travel to beautiful places like the Metolius River can enjoy the majesty of these place through my photography. I get lots of notes to this effect and they make my day every time I get one! This beautiful image concludes my Best of Oregon landscape photos for 2014! Please leave any comments in the comment section below. Additionally, if you have any suggestions where I might capture the next great Oregon Landscape Photograph, please let me know! Thanks for reading and I hope 2014 was as wonderful and beautiful for you as it was for me!
Happy New Years,
This past year, I have found myself gravitating towards photography locations that have lured me in a a spiritual way. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always felt spiritual sensations when in the presence of natural beauty but in past years, I’ve primarily been drawn to grand landscapes…think dramatic clouds, snow-covered mountains with wildflower filled foregrounds. My recent photograph of Mt. Jefferson is a good example. This new Fine Art Photograph of the Tamolitch Pool, also know as the “Blue Pool” is one of the more beautiful and spiritual places I’ve ever been. Although the Tamolitch Pool has a rather simple composition, it is gorgeous and undeniably elegant.Purchase this photograph of Tamolitch Pool
The Tamolitch Pool is located near Oregon’s Highway 126, not far from Clear Lake. The McKenzie River flows out of Clear Lake down Koosah Falls and Sahalie Falls and abruptly disappears underground. The whole river disappears! Approximately three miles downhill, the McKenzie River reappears via springs that arise in the beautiful photograph you see above, in Tamolitch Pool. In the lower left of this photo, you can see that the reflection pattern in the pool is disrupted. This is due to water upwelling via these springs. Essentially, the McKenzie River is re-born in the frigid waters of Tamolitch Pool(aka the Blue Pool). This awe inspiring pool has the bluest water and some of the clearest water I’ve ever seen. Although the water in this Photo appears to be shallow because of its exceptional clarity, it is approximately 70 feet deep in some places. I captured this photograph this past October as the McKenzie River Trail was bursting with falls color. At the start of my hike, it was drizzling which became a heavy rain. By the time I had reached the pool, the photography gods smiled upon me. The rain had stopped, the surface of the pool was windless and still. The mountain tops n the background were shrouded in misty clouds as I composed the scene with my large format camera. I stayed for approximately 2 hours in this magical place before I felt comfortable that I had captured the essence of this magical place. To order fine art photographs of Tamolitch Pool( aka The Blue Pool), please call me at 541-610-4815. They will be stunning! I will have them available in the various sizes listed on my fine art pricing page. Thanks for reading and please leave any comment in the comments section below.
I will be unveiling a new fine art photograph at tomorrow(11/7/14) nights First Friday Art Walk and I couldn’t be more excited. I have loved the Metolius River since the first time I explored its shores but frankly, it is a river whose exceptional beauty is photographically elusive.
Old growth conifers, brilliantly colored water, verdant riparian areas and glorious autumn colors can be very difficult to capture all in the same image. Hikers will agree that the Metolius can be magical in the fall season and frankly, I haven’t seen an image that appropriately honors the Metolius’ autumnal beauty, until now. Poised precariously above the Metolius River, near Bridge 99, I knew I had found an elegant composition. Vibrant colored flora, frigid flowing water and stately evergreens combined with the magnificent branches of a vine maple elegantly extending over the cold waters of the Metolius make for the image I believe appropriately honors this magical river. Please come visit me tomorrow night between 5-9 at Patagonia of Bend, located at 100 NW Wall Street in downtown Bend. In addition of this stunning print of the Metolius, I will be sharing several other beautiful new Photographs that honor the beauty of Central Oregon.Purchase this photo of the Metolius River
I hope to see you tomorrow night!
I’ve probably thought about this list of the best fall color hikes in the Bend, Oregon area way too much. I love Bend and the Central Oregon area as much as anyone and as a landscape photographer, I’ve done an extraordinary amount of hiking and scouting in the Bend area for photography purposes. So, with lots of hiking experience in the Bend area and with a strong desire to represent the Central Oregon area very well, I present you my first top 10 list ever! Top 10 fall hikes in the Bend, Oregon area.
1. Metolius River– The Metolius River is gorgeous any time of the year but autumn is my favorite season and the Metolius has an abundance of fall color in good years.
I captured the above image of the Metolius River this fall and I can’t wait to make some beautiful fine art photographs. The Metolius River has several great trail heads for hiking purposes. The West Metolius trail, easily accessed from the Wizard Falls fish hatchery is one of my favorite trail heads for fall color hikes and another is the Metolius River Trail accessed from “Lower Bridge”, also know as Bridge 99, which is located downstream from the fish hatchery. Below is another new image of the the Metolius, which can be accessed via these stretches of the Metolius.
Vine Maples, like the one seen here are the primary source of fall color along the Metolius but a bit later in the season, Larch trees begin their seasonal glow. The Camp Sherman Store is a great base camp for exploration in the Metolius River basin. They are quick to give advice and it is a wonderful little place. They have all the basic provision you will need for hiking, camping, and flyfishing, they make an epic cold cut sandwich and they have my favorite drink coolers in the world! Additionally, the Camp Sherman Store carries my line of Oregon greeting cards, so stop in to the store, grab a sandwich, buy a greeting card and tell them that I sent you!
2. Deschutes River Trail. The Deschutes River Trail is one of Bend’s prime hiking destinations and in autumn, it can be phenomenal. The following image of the Deschutes River, from the trail was captured several years ago at the height of autumn color.
The Deschutes River Trail can be accessed via Century Drive which heads south from Bend. The Meadow Camp trail head is located on the left, just before you get to Widgi Creek golf course as you head south on Century Drive, towards Mt. Bachelor. There is another Deschutes River trail access point located just past the Inn of the Seventh Mountain, also on the left side of Century Drive as you head south. Some of my favorite trail heads along the Deschutes River Trail include, Benham Falls, Dillon Falls, Aspen Camp, Slough and Meadow Camp. While you will not find vine maples along the Deschutes River Trail, you will find some glorious groves of Aspen trees, like the one seen below as well as choke cherry, fireweed and red osier dogwood, all of which offer some excellent fall color.
3. Tumalo Falls and Tumalo Creek. Like the Deschutes River Trail, the Tumalo Falls area also has some stunning stands of aspen trees which light-up in autumn. Tumalo Falls is located west of Bend and is another wonderful epicenter for hiking in the Bend area. The North Fork Trail which climbs along Tumalo Falls, passes by many other waterfalls and it is a great hiking trail in spring, summer and fall. In winter, the Tumalo Falls area is usually snowed in and it offers some excellent snowshoeing or cross country skiing options.
Another great hiking trail in the Tumalo Falls area is the Tumalo Creek Trail which can be accessed from Near Freemont Meadow, located in Bend’s Shevlin Park and off of Skyliners Drive, west of Bend. To access the Tumalo Creek Trail off of Skyliners Drive, drive west out of Bend on Skyliners Drive. 2.4 miles west of Mt. Washington Drive, turn right on a dirt/gravel road then turn left on to forest service road #4606. Continue on FS 4606 for 1.5 miles until you reach a bridge over Tumalo Creek. The trail is on the far side of the creek but take any parking spot you can find. From here you can travel downstream to Shevlin Park or upstream towards Tumalo Falls.
4. Shevlin Park. Shevlin Park is part of the Bend Oregon park system. It is a gem of a park, encompassing 652 acres and 9.8 miles of trails within its boundaries. As I previously mentioned, by following the Tumalo Creek Trail upstream from Fremont Meadow, one can hike all the way to Tumalo Falls. For an extensive guide to the trails of Shevlin Park, click here, Shevlin Park Trails. Shevlin Park, Like the Tumalo Falls Area, has some wonderful stands of aspen trees as well as some special larch groves.
Some of my favorite parts of Shevlin Park are the aspen groves near Fremont Meadow and the riparian areas near the far footbridge at the back of the park.
5. Santiam Pass/North Santiam River. A favorite drive for visitors to the Bend area is a loop which encompasses both Santiam Pass and Mckenzie Pass. The lava fields on Santiam Pass are decorated with vine maples which typically peak in color early in October. The North Santiam River offers many roadside stops which are great locations for fall exploration. There are many vine maples in this area of Santiam Pass including those you see below, overhanging the North Santiam River.
6. Mckenzie River/ the Blue Pool( aka Tamolitch Pool). The Mckenzie River which originates along Highway 126, west of the cascades crest is another autumn wonderland with lots of hiking options. Vine Maples like those seen below are plentiful in the McKenzie River area.
The Mckenzie River Trail, also located along Highway 126 extends 26 miles along the Mekenzie River and includes highlights such as Sahalie Falls, Koosah Falls, Clear Lake and My favorite, the Blue Pool, also know as the “Tamolitch Pool”. The Blue Pool is one of those magical locations which is better experienced than read about. The Mckenzie River disappears underground not far from the Blue Pool and the Blue Pool is where the River re-surfaces. The water in the pool is so blue that it is mind boggling, making this section of the McKenzie River a must see for hikers with a passion for mystical places. The Blue Pool is crystal clear and quite deep and gladly offers some attractive fall color.
I’ll soon release a new fine art photograph( not the image you see here) of the Blue Pool, so please check back as I think it will be stunning. To visit the Blue Pool/ Tamolitch Pool from Bend, travel west on Highway 20, through the city of Sisters and over Santiam Pass until you get to Highway 126 where you will turn left. Continue straight until you see a sign for TrailBridge campground where you will take a right. Cross over the river, stay to the right and continue to the parking area a couple of hundred yards away. The signage at the parking area mentions the “Tamolitch Pool” but it does not mention the “Blue Pool”. Never fear, they are one and the same. From the trail head, the Blue Pool/Tamolitch Pool are approximately a 2 mile hike away. The hike is attractive and the Blue Pool is sublime!
- 7. Smith Rock State Park . Smith Rock State Park is internationally renowned for its rock climbing but it also has some subdued yet attractive fall color. Color at Smith Rock is focused along riparian areas near the shores of the Crooked River. Hikers can find Red osier dogwood and cottonwoods in several areas of Smith Rock but my personal favorite area for color is the Crooked River Canyon, upstream from the park where there are nice riparian color displays with the stunning backdrop of “The Monument”, one of the more prominent rock features in the park.
To get great views of the Monument at Smith Rock, drive to the end of NE Crooked River Drive and hike the “Homestead Trail”.
8. Sparks Lake. About 25 miles south of Bend along the Cascade Lakes Highway is the beautiful Sparks Lake. Sparks Lake is an iconic daytripping destination for paddlers and hikers alike. Sparks Lake has some excellent displays of wild blueberries in fall but my favorite thing about it is the wonderful light that falls upon the lake in autumn. The sun stays low along the horizon in autumn and there are often turbulent weather fronts with interesting cloud formations. This combinations makes for some stunning sunrises and sunsets in Fall. Below is my favorite fine art landscape photograph of Sparks Lake taken in autumn.
In addition to stunning morning and evening color, Sparks Lake also offers some wonderful macro photography opportunities. Below is a macro of autumn ground cover I captured along the shores of Sparks Lake.
9. Tumalo State Park. Another beautiful fall hike in the Bend area is along the shores of the Deschutes River in Tumalo State Park. Tumalo State Park always has impressive rock formations but the riparian foliage really comes to live in autumn in Tumalo State Park. The hike through the Park is out and back with a turn around point when you reach the confluence of the Deschutes River and Tumalo Creek. Below is one of my favorite images from Tumalo State Park.
10. Mirror Pond/Drake Park. Last but certainly not least in my list of favorite fall color hikes in the Bend area is Beautiful Drake Park. While far from “remote’ or “wild” Drake Park is undeniably beautiful. Drake Park is situated in downtown Bend along the Deschutes River. In this part of downtown, the Deschutes River is dammed, forming the stunning mirror pond. Below is Mirror Pond with Middle and North Sisters framed in the heart of downtown Bend.
The color in Drake Park is primarily from domesticated maple trees but they are beautiful and no list of the best fall color hikes in the Bend, Oregon area would be complete without Drake Park.
If any of you readers have further recommendations for fall hikes in Bend or the Central Oregon area, please leave them in the comments section below.
Thanks for Reading,
Oregon’s Mt. Jefferson is quite possibly my favorite mountain in the world. Mt. Jefferson is stunning, rugged and remote. It holds lots of snow in summer which tends to make it more photogenic than some other Oregon volcanoes. Also, it is loaded with wildflowers. Mt. Jefferson, when viewed from the west and looking east, has an elegant natural composition. Fortunately for Landscape photographers like myself, there are many areas in Oregon’s Old Cascades which are loaded with wildflowers and also have views of Mt. Jefferson, “Fourth of July”. I’ve scouted in the Old Cascades countless times in the past and frankly, I’ve never captured a fine art Landscape print from the west side of Mt. Jefferson that is as stunning as this amazing photograph which I am about to release.Purchasing options for this Mt. Jefferson photograph.
On the Fourth of July, 2014, My Wife, Debbie, My daughter, Emma and I were driving home from Portland after a soccer game and we chose to drive home over Santiam Pass. Santiam Pass is always a pleasant drive but on this day it was amazing. I noticed amazing lenticular cloud formations forming over the Central Oregon Cascades and specifically over Mt. Jefferson. I’d been to the exact location that I took this photo only days before and I knew the wildflowers in the Old Cascades were in full bloom. The combination of stacked lenticular clouds layered over Mt.Jefferson’s elegant summit could be a winning combination! I couldn’t talk my wife and daughter into an impromptu hike in the Old Cascades, so I drove them home to Bend, and I immediately returned to this site, just in time. Dense lenticular clouds were magically stacked over Mt. Jefferson and conditions were mercifully windless. I couldn’t believe my good fortune! I quickly composed the scene you see above which includes Red Indian Paintbrush, purple penstemmon, Lupine and plentiful and whimsical Beargrass, all of them at their peak of color! To my back were clear skies, adding extra light to the scene and thankfully decreasing my exposure times.
I know I’ll get lots of questions about this Print, so let me try to be proactive and answer some ahead of time.
-Does this sort of sunset happen often over Mt. Jefferson? No!
-What kind of filter did I use? None, seriously. It was a rare combination of natural light that makes this beautiful print special.
-Where was this taken? I’m not telling! This is a public but sensitive area, so I won’t share but someone could figure it out with some minimal internet research.
– What time of year was this taken? July 4th!
How many exposures were used to make this image? One, honestly! If you were standing beside me, it would have looked exactly like what you see in this fine art photograph.
The first print of this image is on its way and will be officially released October 3rd, 2014. I can’t wait. I love capturing special places in beautiful lighting conditions and this Print of Mt. Jefferson was certainly captured under some stunning natural lighting conditions. I hope you all enjoy my newest fine art print. Please leave any comments below and if you’d like to order a fine art print of this beautiful scene, please email me at info@mikeputnamphoto or call me directly at 541-610-4815
Thanks For Visiting,
I am very excited to announce that I will be releasing two new fine art landscape photographs this Friday, 9/5/14 at the Patagonia of Bend. I don’t often release new landscape prints and releasing two at the same first Friday is very unusual for me. In addition to the two new prints I will have several other classic Central Oregon prints available. I’ll be sharing my work at Patagonia of Bend, which is located at 1000 NW Wall Street.
I’ve been trying to create a worthy fine art print of the Lower Deschutes River for over two years now. My persistence finally paid off this spring when I captured the beautiful image of the Lower Deschutes River seen below.
I went big with this photograph, 30×50 inch print size! I felt it was necessary if I was going to capture the beautiful canyon details above the Deschutes River as well as the gorgeous field of Lupines and balsamroot that serve as an elegant foreground for the rugged Deschutes River Canyon. Spring comes early in the Lower Deschutes River Canyon and the greens of and golds of the canyon don’t last long. I returned to this stunning location high above the Lower Deschutes, near the town of Madras, Oregon several times this spring before the elements cooperated. Wildflowers at their height of beauty, a warm sunrise descending into the Lower Deschutes River Canyon which is adorned with the greens of wild grasses and the golds of balsamroot sharing their ephemeral beauty, all captured on a rare wind free morning. I couldn’t be happier with this new print and I hope my collectors enjoy it as well. Do you have a fly-fisherman in your life who is difficult to buy gifts for? I can guarantee they don’t already have this stunning photograph of “Steelhead Heaven”! Keep in mind that I can make much smaller prints of this Deschutes River image to fit your office or home.
One of the fine art photographs I will display this Friday is not new but it is a classic Oregon Landscape photograph. This beautiful Oregon photograph was captured in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness several years ago.
This image of Mt. Jefferson has what is quite simply the best collection of wildflowers I’ve ever seen. I’d been to this exact location a few days before and realized that the wildflowers hadn’t quite peaked, so I planned my return. I made my return with a light and fast approach. I simplified my camera gear down to the bare necessities, including my 4×5 camera body, two lenses, light meter, film plates, a dark cloth, bug spray, a shell, food and the 10 essentials. I quickly hiked the 7.5 miles into this spot, gaining over 2,000 vertical feet in under two hours and set up for this specific image. While I take full credit for scouting this location and being prepared to capture this beautiful scene in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness, I cannot take credit for the wonderful Lenticular cloud that formed over Mt. Jefferson. That was a gift from Mother Nature that I was thrilled to receive! As the cloud formed, I became nervous with excitement. I was in front of one of the most beautiful scene I’d ever witnessed with arguably the most photogenic Mountain in Oregon as a backdrop and an amazing lenticular cloud cap formed over Mt. Jefferson. I could not believe my luck. I made a couple of trips back to this exact location this summer and it has changed, probably forever. Different, less attractive plants have replaced many of the wildflowers in this beautiful image. While I may never be fortunate enough to witness this scene again, I am lucky to have seen it once and to be able to share this print with the photographic world. This image has graced the cover of Visit Bend and other publications and fine art photographs of this image can be found in countless private and corporate art collections across the United States. To see this beautiful Mt Jefferson Wilderness image, visit me this Friday, 9/5/14 at Patagonia of Bend!
Another new image I will be premiering this Friday is of Oregon’s stunning Abiqua Falls. Abiqua Falls is located in the Willamette Valley. Although this image does not require an epic backpacking trip, it does require some commitment. It is very remote and the descent down to Abiqua Creek can be treacherous if the trail is wet.
Abiqua falls is located in a giant Basalt Column lined amphitheater which looks like it should have been the cinematic climax from the movie, Jurassic Park. It is truly stunning. While the falls themselves are elegant it is the entire scene which overwhelms the senses. I worked n this composition for a great while before capturing what I feel is the essence of this special place. An Elegant 100 foot waterfall, the gently flowing Abiqua Creek and a stunning lichen covered basalt columns. I can’t wait to share this amazing new print with the art world!
Another fine art landscape print I’ll be showing this Friday is of Central Oregon’s fantastic Sparks Lake. Located near my home, in Bend, Oregon, Sparks Lake is a landscape photographer’s dream. Sparks has a naturally elegant composition that is hard to explain, you just need to visit! It offers family friendly hiking, wonderful waters for stand-up paddling or kayaking, spring wildflowers, falls colors and Sparks Lake always offers world class views of South Sister and Broken Top mountains, both of which are seen in this fine art landscape photograph which I’ll be showing this Friday night!
I’ve been to Sparks lake hundred of times but I’ve never witnessed a sunrise like this one before or since. Placid reflective waters, fresh snow on South Sister and Broken Top, an interesting foreground, and mist over the surface of Sparks Lake combine to make this one of the best examples of landscape photography I’ve ever produced! Come see these fine art photographs and several more this Friday at Patagonia of Bend!
I hope to see you Friday Night,
Oregon’s Lower Deschutes River has long been considered one of the best Steelhead and trout fisheries in the US and I’ve been working on this beautiful new print of the Lower Deschutes River for two years before I got the result I was after which you see below.
This beautiful fine art print of the Lower Deschutes River was captured near the riverside town of Maupin, Oregon, a fly-fishing hub in the Eastern Oregon desert. For those of you who haven’t experienced the Lower Deschutes, it is a big, beautiful, rugged western River. Impressive geological formations, occasional mountain views and spring wildflowers are all things that I associate with the Lower Deschutes River. This new print does a wonderful job of capturing all of those elements of the Lower Deschutes in the same image. In addition, this section of the Deschutes has a mesmerizing “S- curve” pattern which draws the viewer into this fine art photograph.
From its headwaters at Little Lava Lake the Deschutes River travels 252 miles to its termination at the Columbia River. Through out this 252 mile journey, the Deschutes River changes personality several different times. The Upper Deschutes River is more of a large stream than a river as it flows between lakes along the Cascade Lakes Highway and it gathers steam and volume as it nears the city of Bend and some popular viewpoints at Benham Falls and Dylan Falls. Technically, the Middle Deschutes River starts at the city of Bend and terminates at Lake Billy Chinook and in between it suffers from dangerously low summer water levels which some great groups, such as the Deschutes River Conservancy are helping to alleviate. Below Lake Billy Chinook is the aforementioned Lower Deschutes. It is what I consider to be the most “Western” section of the Deschutes River. Big, arid( except in the spring), rugged, filled with Steelhead and trout, and marked by undeniable signs of man. Most of these sign of man stem from railroad wars as a race raged to cut old growth ponderosa upstream in the Central Oregon area. Any fisherman who has been on the Lower Deschutes before sunrise has seen some amazing light shows on the aged canyon walls of this grand river, which is why I wanted my first and so far best photo of the Lower Deschutes to be captured at sunrise.
In addition to the elegant S- curve of the Lower Deschutes, in the fine art print of this image, the majestic, snow covered Mt. Hood is clearly visible in the upper right hand corner of the horizontal version of this print. Spring wildflowers, the rugged and intricately textured Lower Deschutes River canyon, the amazing Lower Deschutes River, and the glacier covered Mt. Hood, all in the same print. I couldn’t be happier and I’m confident your favorite fly-fisherman will love this print as well. Look for this print to make its debut at my next first Friday show in Downtown Bend, on September 5, 2014. To view a larger version of this image please visit my Oregon Rivers, Lakes and Waterfalls Portfolio. This wonderful print of the Lower Deschutes was captured with the same large format Camera that I use to create all of my fine art prints, so this print can be made as big as 50 inches wide and still maintain impeccable detail. If you have any questions or you would like to place an order, for a fine art print of this image, please contact me directly at 541-610-4815.
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Oregon is blessed with countless amazing waterfalls. Proxy Falls, Elowah Falls, Silver Falls, Salt Creek Falls, Tumalo Falls and Multnomah Falls are stunning by any standards. It is rare that I find a waterfall that is equally as impressive as those beauties but recently I did find a waterfall that is new to me and as awe inspiring as any I’ve seen before. I present you with Oregon’s beautiful Abiqua Falls!
Abiqua Falls is created where Abiqua Creek cascades nearly 100 feet over an amazing formation of columnar basalt. Over time, the basalt columns have been covered with a fascinating array of lichens and and mosses. On the viewers right of the waterfall, the lichen has formed an enchanting bright orange/red area of basalt. The whole amphitheater is something out of “Jurassic Park”. One wouldn’t be surprised to see a pterodactyl swoop out of the sky!
There is a little more to the print of this image than you see in this online image. I’m certain that the print will be amazing. I captured this scene with my large format 4×5 film camera, as I do with all of the fine art photographs that I capture. The detail in the final print will be stunning as will the flow pattern in Abiqua Creek, at the bottom of the image.
Getting to Abiqua Falls has its difficulties. Specific directions to Abiqua Falls can be found many different places on the internet, but I will provide a few precautions. The closest city to Abiqua Falls is the tiny town of Scotts Mills, Oregon and frankly, it’s not that close to Scotts Mills! An extensive drive down poorly marked forest service roads is required and the road can be rather treacherous after a heavy rain. The trail itself is difficult to find and it is quite steep and when muddy it could be very dangerous. Old Ropes are in place to aid in the descent down to to Abiqua Creek. I pity the first hiker who these old ropes fail on as it could lead to a nasty fall. The property that Abiqua Falls is located on is owned by the Mount Angel Abbey which has graciously granted access to explorers like myself. If you choose to visit this amazing waterfall, please respect the property, pack out everything you take in and tread lightly as access could be taken away at any time. To see more of my fine art prints of Oregon’s beautiful waterfalls, please visit the portfolio page of my website, Oregon Waterfall Prints.
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Oregon’s amazing Deschutes River is the lifeline of Central Oregon. Waters from the Deschutes irrigate crops, hydrate cites such as Bend and Redmond and serve as a recreational wonderland for residents and visitors alike. The headwaters of the Deschutes arise at Little Lava Lake, which is located along the Cascade Lakes Highway, south of the city of Bend. It extends 250 miles and flows northward, eventually emptying into the Columbia River. The Deschutes is frequently divided into three distinct sections, the Upper Deschutes, the Middle Deschutes and the Lower Deschutes. The Upper Deschutes River extends from its headwaters at Little Lava Lake to the city of Bend, where it forms Mirror Pond in Bend’s iconic Drake Park. The Middle Deschutes River extends from the city of Bend downstream to Round Butte Dam, which forms Lake Billy Chinook. The Middle Deschutes River and the Central Oregon Cascade Mountains, including the Three Sisters, Mt Bachelor, Broken Top, Tam McArthur Rim and Black Crater can be seen below in the new Fine art print I am about to release.
The Deschutes River, below Lake Billy Chinook is classified as the Lower Deschutes River. I will soon release a print of the Lower Deschutes as part of a bigger initiative which I am very excited about. The Lower Deschutes, famed for its steelhead fisheries extends all the way to the Columbia River. A map of the Deschutes River and its various tributaries can be seen below.
Of the three sections of the Deschutes River, I would argue that the Middle Deschutes despite its beauty is the most neglected and least appreciated. Water Flow in the Middle Deschutes ranges from 450 cfs to 1,200 cfs in winter. Unfortunately, those levels drop drastically during the summer irrigation season to extremely anemic levels ranging between 30 and 75 cfs. The Middle Deschutes is nearly irrigated to death, creating hot unhealthy water during the critical summer season. Fortunately, some wonderful local organizations such as the Deschutes River Conservancy are tirelessly working to restore more natural flow levels to the Middle Deschutes and other troubled waters such Whychus Creek and Tumalo Creek.
My hope is that the Print of the Middle Deschutes River seen below will raise some awareness regarding the plight of the Middle Deschutes and give some small boost to organizations such as the Deschutes River Conservancy in their struggle to restore healthy in stream flows to Central Oregon’s live waterways. I am extremely excited about this Deschutes River print as it does an excellent job of capturing the essence of this area of Central Oregon and this section of the Deschutes River.
This photo shares the rugged beauty of the Middle Deschutes River Canyon at the height of its spring beauty with blushes of yellow from Balsamroot and green from native desert grasses. All of this captured with the stunning backdrop of the Central Oregon Cascades. Tumalo Mountain, Mt. Bachelor, Tam McArthur Rim, Broken Top, South Sister, Middle Sister, North Sister, Black Crater, Belknap Crater and Black Butte can all be enjoyed in this stunning new print of the Middle Deschutes River. For More information about efforts to protect and restore the Middle Deschutes River, please consider supporting the Deschutes River Conservancy. For More fine art prints of the Deschutes River and other waters of Central Oregon, please visit the galleries page of my website Deschutes River Photos. Also, please check back often as I will soon release a new fine art print of the Lower Deschutes River and some new information about a larger effort I am about to initiate in an attempt to give back to the Deschutes River.
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Let me start this seasonal update by noting that I Love wildflowers. I mean I really love them. I seek them out every year and I do extensive planning around the timing of the peak blooms of different wildflower locations in the Bend, Oregon area. Yesterday, I drove to Central Oregon’s beautiful Smith Rock State Park and I saw some of the first wildflowers of the season. While the flowers were far from overwhelming, they did get me excited for wildflower season, which made me think about the wildflowers in the Bend Oregon area. Smith Rock is one of the first places in the Bend area to begin bursting with spring color but there are countless other areas of wildflower beauty.
The sulfur flowers in the above image from Smith Rock State Park are subtle yet they have a subdued beauty, like many of the wildflowers in the high desert. Currently you can find the first few blasamroot starting to pop at Smith Rock as well as desert phlox, fiddleneck and even a few Indian Paintbrush. Another early desert flower can be found along the Alder Springs Trail near sisters Oregon. It is the delicate yet beautiful Bitterroot. The Bitterroot is a classic western flower, often found on dry mesas and only in early spring.
Another classic spring Beauty that can be found in the alder Springs area is the Balsamroot which can be seen with an amazing backdrop of lichen covered basalt columns.
The Bend Oregon area has lots of attractive stands of balsamroot like the one seen above and most of them are located near waterways such as the Deschutes River, the Crooked River and and Whychus Creek. Slightly later in the wildflower season, Bend’s beautiful Tumalo Falls starts to glow with small stands of wildflowers. Incidentally, This image was selected by the Sierra club to be featured in their engagement calendar. While the penstemmon and Indian Paintbrush aren’t crowded into the Tumalo Creek basin, their are nice pockets of them and the falls are located a mere 10 miles from Bend, Oregon.
Another relatively early blooming location is the Cascade lakes highway, located south of Bend. There are many lakes along the Cascade lakes Highway and two of my favorites are Hosmer Lake and the more well known Sparks Lake. Hosmer is further south and at slightly lower elevation, so wildflowers bloom a bit earlier at Hosmer Lake than they do at Sparks lake. while there are countless wildflowers at both lakes, my personal favorite wildflowers are the Mountain Heather at Hosmer Lake and the wild columbine at Sparks Lake. Below is an image (which makes an elegant print!) of Hosmer Lake with a backdrop of Bend Oregon’s own Mt. Bachelor.
Incidentally, I recently released a beautiful poster of Mt. Bachelor in winter and it is for sale if you visit this link, Mt. Bachelor Poster.
Sparks Lake is approximately 25 miles from my hometown of Bend and it is one of those places that is blessed with a stunning natural composition. It is hard to take a bad picture at Sparks Lake! Below is the beautiful south sister mirrored in the glassy waters of Sparks Lake, with an adornment of columbine . Windless mornings like this are rare along the Cascade Lakes Highway and even more rare is a windless morning at Sparks Lake when a bald eagle lands in the tallest tree in your composition! If you look very closely at this Sparks Lake print, there is indeed an eagle perched at the top of the tallest tree in the print!
Moving away from Hosmer Lake and Sparks Lake and the Cascade Lakes Highway and into the desert we will find one of my favorite Central Oregon wildflowers, the delicate Mariposa Lily. Mariposa Lilies are very short lived and require very specific conditions in order to bloom. They can be found in many desert areas in the Bend, Oregon area but in some years, they don’t bloom at all. This amazing group of lilies was captured on a friends property in an undeveloped area of Bend. It is rare to find one Mariposa Lily and exceedingly rare to find an arrangement like you see in this print.
The Mt. Jefferson Wilderness area is one of the next wildflower filled destinations to bloom in typical years. It is filled with wildflower viewing opportunities and multiple trail heads to choose from on both the east and west side of the Oregon Cascades. A few of my favorite trail heads are Jack Lake, Carl Lake, Whitewater, and Breitenbush. One of the more accessible alpine meadows in the Central Oregon area is Canyon Creek Meadow which on select years is filled with a see of purple lupine, like you see in the image below. This amazing wildflower meadow is backed by the Rugged Three Fingered Jack.
Another favorite wildflower location in the Bend area is the amazing Mt. Jefferson. There are many worthy wildflower destinations in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness area and one of those is Jefferson Park. Although Jefferson Park requires some effort to reach, it is well worth the sweat. Approximately 6 miles from the Whitewater trail head is the alpine eden of Jefferson Park. There is tremendous variation in wildflower quality from year to year at Jefferson Park but every year is beautiful. One of the most amazing wildflowers meadows I’ve ever seen is in the picture below. I simply refer to it as Mt. Jefferson Wilderness and it typifies how I recall Jefferson Park and the entire Mt. Jefferson Wilderness Area.
Another favorite Bend Oregon area wildflower hike is the Broken Top Trail Hike. Located off of the Cascade Lakes Highway, the Broken Top Trail requires a rugged drive up the rocky and rutted forest service road #370. Typically, the 370 road is not open until late in the summer due to winter damage and heavy snowfall in the area. Regardless of the requisite effort, it is worth it! Below is another image of Bend’s beautiful Mt.Bachelor with a lush wildflower meadow, located above the Broken Top Trail.
There are many beautiful wildflower meadows located along the Broken Top Trail. On of my favorite views of Broken Top is seen from the Broken Top Trail.
This image of Broken Top was captured on a stunning, still morning after countless days of scouting. Rugged yet placid, it is an excellent representation of Broken Top and this amazing area of the Oregon Cascades. Technically, Broken Top is located within the Three Sisters Wilderness but Broken Top has a very different feel than the Western part of the Three Sisters Wilderness Area. Below is another image of Broken Top, taken from a different spur of the Broken Top Trail.
The Western side of the Three Sisters Wilderness Area is very different than the eastern side. The Western side receives much more precipitation and has more lush meadow areas. Below is one of my favorite wildflower meadows in the western half of the three Sisters Wilderness Area, located near the Obsidian trail head. I discovered this particular meadow in the Three Sisters Wilderness Area while backpacking with several friends. It was was sprinkled with hundreds of thousands of wildflowers. One of the more amazing sites I’ve seen in Oregon!
All of these Bend area wildflower photos are available as fine art prints and all of them were captured with the large format 4×5 film camera that I use to capture all of my fine art prints. For more information about my work, please browse through this site and if you are interested in purchasing a print, please do not hesitate to call me at 541-610-4815.
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I’m excited to announce that I currently have a big exhibit on display at Eastlake Framing, located at 1335 NW Galveston Avenue, in beautiful Bend, Oregon. Eastlake does some absolutely stunning custom framing and I have been absolutely thrilled with the framing work they have done for me.
I have a large collection of work on display at Eastlake, including the signature piece for this show, “Summit Sunrise” which is seen above. The artist’s reception has already passed and was a huge success. My work will be on display at Eastlake through May, 2014. My fine art landscape photography looks stunning there and the staff of Eastlake framing welcome visitors and they are very helpful if potential collectors happen to have any questions about my work or any custom framing questions you might have.
Eastlake has put a lot of work into this exhibit and I would like to express my sincere gratitude Eastlake’s owner, Deb Spicer as well as to Eastlake’s employees, Denice and Diane. They make a wonderful team and have been a pleasure to work with from the day I met them.
I am really excited to announce that I have just released a new poster of Central Oregon’s Mt. Bachelor. This Mt. Bachelor Poster turned out beautifully. The colors are accurate and the poster elegantly captures he most beautiful sunrise that I have ever witnessed on Mt. Bachelor. Heavy snowfall from the previous night left a heavy coating of snow on the foreground trees, giving this Mt. Bachelor Poster a wonderful sense of depth, rarely found in photographs of Mt. Bachelor.
The poster is 24 inches tall x 36 inches wide and would and makes a wonderful gift for any fan of Oregon’s favorite ski mountain. The Mt. Bachelor poster is now available at various retail locations in Bend Oregon and the Central Oregon area and it will soon be available for purchase directly through this website. Retail price for this Mt. Bachelor poster is $20. Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions regarding wholesale pricing of this poster. To purchase my new Mt. Bachelor Poster, please visit my newly opened online store by following this link, Mt. Bachelor Poster!
I am happy to say that I recently had some new brochures printed for my Fine Art Landscape photography business and they look great fantastic! Most of the landscape photos were updated and all of the images in my brochure are from the Bend Oregon area. Bend is home to me, it is where I have captured most of my best landscape photos, and I love it here!
The brochure is a tri-fold, has some of my best Oregon landscape photos included in it and some important contact information as well. Below is an image of the inside of my new photography brochure.
As you can see from the above images, the color and diversity of Bend and the Central Oregon area is quite impressive. Below is an image of the outside of the brochure.
If you have a sincere interest in ordering one of my fine art photographs and would like one of my brochures, please email me at email@example.com and I’d be happy to send you one of them.
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I’ve been to Oregon’s Beautiful Scott Lake countless times in the past and I’ve managed to capture a few nice images but I’ve never truly captured the essence of this beautiful mountain lake. Scott Lake offers one of the best views of Oregon’s beautiful Three Sisters Mountains.
All Of the Three Sisters are visible from Scott Lake, as seen above. From left to right, they are North Sister, Middle Sister, and South Sister. From Scott Lake, the Three Sisters are due west, giving them a very different arrangement than the typical view from the cities of Bend or Sisters. While the view of the Three Sisters from Scott lake is always beautiful, this particular morning, it was exquisite! This photo was taken on a crisp autumn morning after a fresh snow in the Central Oregon Cascades, which includes the Three Sisters Mountains. Mist on the water, a gorgeous arrangement of clouds flirting around the Three Sisters and a remarkably placid Scott Lake providing a wonderful reflection of the Three Sisters all make for an exceptional fine art photograph, which captures the essence of one of the more amazing places in Oregon! To see the very first framed print of this stunning image, please visit me at Patagonia@Bend, located at 1000 NW Wall Street, in downtown Bend, Oregon on 2/7/14 from 5-9 PM.
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This video includes an interview with the crew of Bend, Oregon’s KBNZ-CBS program, “My Window”. It was filmed last summer at Central Oregon’s beautiful Elk Lake. I was interviewed by McKenzie Wilson and Kerri Stewart, who were both kind and professional. I was a nervous wreck! I should also add that the rest of the staff was also awesome to work with as they were Personable and talented.
Please click on the link below to view this interview on You Tube. I’m told the interview went well…I haven’t found the courage to watch the whole thing!
McKenzie and Kerri primarily asked me about my work as a landscape photographer in the Bend, Oregon area and what the special places, like Elk Lake mean to me. I also got to explain my large format 4×5 (seen on the left side of the image above), why I use it for capturing my fine art prints and how this beautiful old camera works. All in all, the staff of “My Window” was amazing, the interview was pretty painless. watch the video and let me know what you think. Perhaps the biggest take home from this My Window interview is that i truly have a face for radio….Not Television!
I am about to release a couple of new prints which have me very excited. Below is the final version of one of my newest print of the Deschutes River near Bend, Oregon. Have hiked and run past this location countless times in the past and it is always beautiful. Two years ago, I visited this spot in autumn but I was too late, the fall color had faded and while beautiful, it was no longer photo worthy.
In autumn of 2013, I returned to the same location long the Deschutes River trail and my timing was perfect. Fall color was better than I’d ever seen it at this particular location along the Deschutes River and the flow patterns of the Deschutes were mesmerizing. This was all about timing and good fortune. The above print of the Deschutes is obviously in a vertical orientation. This print will be equally as attractive in a wider, horizontal orientation seen below. This wider shape includes more of the intriguing and inviting flow patterns of the Deschutes which invite the viewer on a visual journey up the beautiful waters of one of my favorite rivers.
I hope to have this beautiful image available at my next First Friday art exhibit, Friday, February 7th at Patagonia of Bend, located at 1000 NW Wall st. For more information about my upcoming show schedule and the release of this beautiful Deschutes River Print, please visit my facebook page. Mike’s Facebook page.
The 2014 winter has been sporadic and mild in the Outdoor haven of Central Oregon. It has been great for trail running and disappointing for downhill skiing. I talked with an older, more experienced, talented and very kind photographer today and, indirectly, he inspired me to share some winter images of Bend and the Central Oregon Area. By the way, his name is Chuck Blakeslee. Really good guy.
So far in 2014, snow has been sparse , skiing rocky, and worries about irrigation in the High desert climate of Central Oregon abound.
Speaking with Chuck, made me realize that the snow pack in the Sierras was exponentially worse than the Northwest Cascades, which feed the irrigation needs of Oregon and Washington. The dark side of me relishes spring weather in January yet the conscientious side of me feels depressed and saddened about the dearth of snow in the cascades and the future difficulties that the snow deficit entails. Chuck’s information made me a bit less saddened, more hopeful, and willing to enjoy what we is available to me. Thanks Chuck! While the above image of Central Oregon’s beautiful Mt. Bachelor wasn’t taken this year, there is currently enough snow to ski and….. it could be worse!
Not long ago, Benham Falls on the Deschutes River, south of Bend, looked much like this.Winter Elegance. No longer. Currently, there is almost no snow in the Deschutes River trail area between Bend and Sunriver, Oregon. I originally captured this photo of Benham Falls while on an adventure with my wonderful daughter, Emma. I’ve been to Benham Falls countless times and many of them while there was snow on the ground but never with such perfect snow cover as you see in this picture. Just enough snow to cover up some unattractive under growth but not so much that the scene is a big white blob.
The next winter photo is also taken along the Deschutes River but it is an entirely different area of the Deschutes. This photo was actually taken in Central Oregon’s Tumalo State Park. I used to work near Tumalo State Park in a previous life but now, I thankfully work in all of the beautiful areas of Oregon. It is a pretty good gig!
This image of snow illustrates some of the subtleties of winter photography. When I captured this photograph, it was actively snowing wet, heavy, sticky snow. cold dry snow would not have stuck to the branches of the lovely red osier dogwood in the foreground, making for a less wintery, less interesting image. Temparature, timing,wind, could cover….it all matters.
The following photo of Central Oregon’s Cascade Mountains illustrates another fact about winter photography. It is hard, harder than you think. This image was taken from the summit of Tumalo Mountain, located near Mt. Bachelor and the town of Bend, Oregon. Summiting Tumalo Mountain requires a 1,400ft climb. Not Herculean but it is work. Add in 25 inches of fresh powder overnight, a 40 pound pack, a 3:00 AM start time, and make it zero degrees outside and you have a challenge. If and when you find an elegant snowy foreground, try getting solid footing for your tripod on top of 10 feet of powdery snow, then take your gloves off( it’s still zero degrees outside, much less with the windchill) and try to focus your camera. Also, don’t breath anywhere near your lens as it immediately freezes, leaving a layer of frost on your expensive glass. Not a good artistic effect! If you manage to not get powder inside of your film plates you might actually get some worthwhile images. I think you get the idea. It is hard, much harder than warmer weather photography. Well, this one was worth the effort but I don’t miss the pain of getting the feeling back in my fingers, 30 minutes after I got back in my truck and cranked up the heat. Luckily, they did warm up and I immediately went out and bought a pair of -50 degree boots to better preserve my toes the next time out.
I have slowly begun to realize that I am drawn to water which is not a problem unless you live a desert. While the Central Oregon area is technically the “High Desert”, water abounds which is part of why I love it so much in my home town of Bend, Oregon. The following image is of the beautiful, Tumalo Falls, taken 10 miles from my home in Bend.
While this image only takes a short cross country ski from a convenient trailhead. Snow conditions in this image were epic. Good sticky snow, very little wind and not too much snow the block things up and subdue detail. Once again, timing and conditions are everything in the world of winter landscape photography. It was cold enough to have nice ice formations adjacent to Tumalo Falls, yet warm enough for snow to stick on the trees and it wasn’t snowing so hard that falling snow dulled the detail in my prints. Quite the contrary, the detail is exceptional in this image of Tumalo Falls, one of my favorite quick getaways near Bend.
I offer one last cold winter image of Central Oregon to remind everyone of what may be ahead, unless global puts Central Oregon in a death grip for the winter. I took this photograph of Paulina Creek, in the Newberry Crater National Volcanic Monument. this was late in 2013, after an extended cold spell that thoroughly froze a waterfall in the monument.
The detail was pretty stunning in the scene along Paulina Creek. I hope my prints have half the detail that my eyes witnessed on that beautiful winter day. T vie more of my Oregon landscape Photographs, please visit the portfolio page of my website. It contains all of the Oregon Nature photos that I have for sale. Oregon Nature photos for sale.
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The Deschutes River near my hometown of Bend, Oregon is a recreational treasure. I’ve explored the banks of the Deschutes hundreds of times over the last 15 years and I always manage to find a new perspectives of the Deschutes River that inspire me. I will soon release the following print of the Deschutes River located near Bend, Oregon.
This image of the Deschutes River was initially an after thought. Two years ago, I was trail running/photo scouting along the Deschutes River Trail and I quickly snapped a picture from this location with a camera phone. I shared the photo with a couple of friends and one of them loved it. He asked to use it as the screen saver for his phone and I happily obliged. Last Fall, I returned to the same spot and quietly studied this scene, not far from Bend, Oregon and I too became smitten with this photo of the Deschutes. It was a bit early for optimal fall color but the water levels in the Deschutes River made for some really gorgeous flow patterns. I returned to the Deschutes several times over the next 10 days and eventually captured this wonderful combination of light and peak fall color along the Deschutes that were animated by the dancing flow patterns of the this section of the river near Bend. Below is a wider image of the the same scene, which captures an even more dramatic flow pattern in the Deschutes River.
I think my initial hesitation regarding this scene stemmed from the downed logs along the shores of the River. I tend to prefer clean and elegant images but sometimes nature doesn’t cooperate. It is unusual to find images of waterfalls and rivers without some sort of debris. The logs in this image of the Deschutes River have been there for years and finally they have aged to the point that they offer character rather than distraction. The mossy tips suggest some level of permanence and the small sapling growing on the log on the left hand shore suggest a certain delicacy and persistence in nature. It may sound odd but I think of this image as something of a photographic break-through for me. Instead of avoiding the “debris”, it has shifted my perception and allowed me to embrace the natural cycles captured in this image of the Deschutes. A big beautiful fine art print of this image will soon be available in both a vertical and horizontal compositions. I should also note that the fine art print of this photograph will have an exception amount of detail in the image. I think that it will be the kind of Deschutes River photograph that I could stare at for years.
I don’t have this print of the Deschutes available to the public yet but If you would like to see some of the other fine art prints I have displayed in and around Central Oregon, please visit my Bend, Oregon Walking Gallery. My walking gallery is a new concept I am trying for collectors. It is a map of Central Oregon with all of the display locations where my Oregon fine art Landscape photographs are being exhibited. Please check back to my Bend Oregon Art Gallery page often as I will try to update it with information about which prints I am exhibiting on a regular basis. Hopefully this will allow my potential collectors to casually visit and view many of my Landscape prints while they consider purchasing.
Thanks For Visiting,