Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
Sunday March 6, 2016
I had two photographer friends suggest that the rainbow was faked in this image- filtered in or photoshopped, because it's below the horizon. It's not fake. This is how it really looked. Now, I'm by no means a documentarian and I adjust my pictures to communicate how a place/time FELT to me rather than show how it looked literally. But adding a rainbow is a stretch I won't make. I don't make Care Bear cartoons, this is my landscape photography and I aim to show the spirit of place above anything else.
Ansel Adams conveyed mood expertly with his negative making and printing skills. In fact, he would print the same negatives differently at different times in his life to reflect his mood at the time. Granddaddy Adams did it, most other photographers do it and I do it too, my own way. This is what elevates photography to art in the first place. In a sense, it makes every picture a self portrait of the photographer to some degree.
Red Rock Canyon is a special kind of magic on its own without help from me. This rainbow is real, ya'll and I love it. This storm was one of the most beautiful moments I've witnessed at Red Rock Canyon yet and I'll keep going back as often and for as long as I can. Like with all relationships, "one must observe the proper rites."
I will have functioned as a photographer if my pictures stir reverence for Nature in the viewer and inspire a need to care for the land (and water and air and plants and animals) much better than we have been. Our collective sanity and survival on this planet depend on it but improving our ways for Nature's sake, without any particular promise of benefit to ourselves, is ideal. Nature deserves to function in peace for its own sake. I hope one day very soon that we understand this and behave accordingly.