Thursday, July 31, 2014

Desert Panoramas

I haven't taken any pano shots in a while... overdue, right? Driving the Jeep around in Joshua Tree recently the conditions were ideal: Wide open vistas combined with great clouds. I was thinking about my friends at Skywatch Friday when I took these!
The shot above is one of my favorites. It's two images stitched together in Photoshop with my telephoto zoom lens set at 90mm. Double-click on the image to make it larger so you can see the dirt road off in the distance that I took to get down into this part of Joshua Tree National Park. It's called Geology Tour Road, and it's one of my favorite areas in the park. Here's the same shot in b&w. What's your preference??
Below is another pano shot of the same area. This time my zoom is set at 70mm and it's three images stitched together, so it covers a much wider angle. The problem with pano shots is that the more images you stitch together, the narrower the final shot ends up. I generally don't like to use more than three images or the shot gets too narrow.

The double-peaked hill to the left is called Malapai Hill. The geologists get really excited about this hill. I have no idea why and I don't know much about geology. I just know it looks cool and it's a nice hike over to the base.
The photo below is very different from those above. As I was bumping along home in the Jeep, traveling north past Malapai Hill, the sun had set and the sky was dark and grey except for this little sliver of bright, colorful sky. I used a tripod and a 400mm telephoto lens and stitched together two images. It's really just a very small area because of the telephoto lens, but it looked like a jewel on the horizon!
Thanks for stopping by, and have a great weekend. Click on the Skywatch link to check out great skies from around the world!

33 comments:

  1. Magical place and gorgeous sky shots for SWF ~ thanks ~ and yes 'over due' ~ ^_^

    artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

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  2. Wonderful skies and superb captures for the day! Thanks for sharing the beauty!! Have a great weekend!

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  3. My preference is ALL of them. great images.

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  4. Stunning captures of that sky with the clouds. I just had my husband come in to view your photos. He likes them too especially the first shot. It is both our favorites.

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  5. I love all of these and am inspired by your tinkering around. You are right about the panorama scenes. About three image is all that works.

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  6. One of my favorite areas in JT.
    I was going to say that Iike the color photo best, but then I enlarged them and I LOVE the black and white.

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  7. Outrageous! The black and white. No contest. The drama in the sky is much more pronounced.

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  8. Beautiful scenery. I love the wide open spaces.

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  9. Spectacular skies. I love taking panos but do have to settle with long and narrow.

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  10. Beautiful pano's and of course landscapes. The black and white has an Ansel Adams touch. Like it much

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  11. Great sky shots .... spectacular clouds and colors! Wish you a great weekend!

    Irene

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  12. Terrific captures!
    http://amitaag.blogspot.in/2014/07/skywatch-fluffy.html

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  13. Spectacular scenery and your photos are stunning works of art. The colors in the last shot take my breath away. Your black and white is also gorgeous. Thanks for reminding us to enlarge them. You can see so much more in these beautiful shots.

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  14. It's like I stepped out my back door to this gorgeous landscape today!!! Wow. And my preference in the special effects would be none at all...gimme the 'real deal'.

    Loved reading about your summer rain too from the post below this one.

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  15. Wow, these are gorgeous panos! I have to try this sometime.. They are all beautiful, it is too hard to pick a favorite... Happy Skywatching and have a great weekend!

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  16. Those are beautiful panoramic sky shots. I like the color one best of the first two because it shows of those amazing desert colors.

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  17. I've only lived in the US for a year snd a half and one of the things that amaze me is how diverse the landscape is. Breathtaking shots! Thank you for sharing!

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  18. Wow, these images are fabulous!! Sensational, really. Wish I could learn to do those pano shots.

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  19. There is nothing like photos taken by a person who values where he is. Thank you.

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  20. Nature provides such wonderful opportunity for the photographers.

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  21. Nice panos - I have not tried the stitch method - I use a very wide angle lens and then crop to pano format.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

    PS: the four in a row puffin shot is one of my favourites as well.

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  22. all are really nice...I like the third one best!!!

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  23. I love the first one. the clouds seem to leap off the screen. great work.

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  24. These panoramas are breathtaking! What a view!

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  25. Super panoramas. And I like that telephoto shot; my eye seems to be tuned to pick out little areas of interest too, in fact I find it difficult to take in wide angle scenes till I see them through the camera. Malapai is what remains of an old volcano.

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  26. Lovely pans ... I just found that feature on my camera ad have been practicing some . JT is the perfect place for them!

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  27. You did a great job of matching up the sky color. I always end up with seams between the stitches if the sky is blue. The B&W rendering really emphasizes the cloud texture, but the detail in the large sizes of all of them is astounding. I've switched to using my iPhone for panos ans have been pleased with the reults, but the real key to success is what is in front of the camera, and you really nailed these!

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  28. La foto cher preferisco è quella a colori, perchè il cielo blue è veramente magnifico !!!
    Ma, anche tutte le altre foto sono molto belle... l'America è un grande paese da fotografare !
    Vorrei tanto poterci abitare !
    Buona giornata :)
    Myriam
    Ps: molto bello il tuo blog.

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