Photograph of the Week: Maui Rainforest

While hiking along a trail in the rain forest of eastern Maui, I was able to capture this beautiful photograph of the moss covered trees along the trail.
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Photograph of the Week: Maui Rainforest

I was soaked! And I was cold!The rain had been falling all morning, and I hiked up this trail to what the guidebook said was a small waterfall. I was in Maui, one of the Hawai’ian islands, and I dressed for the nice 70-80 degree weather Hawai’i is known for.But this particular morning, I had been dressed in a t-shirt and a pair of shorts, and as I was hiking in a rain forest (the eastern side of Maui is a verdant rain forest) – it was of course raining.I had been driving along the road to Hana. This particular road is loaded with over 30 waterfalls, and I have to admit that at the time my skills, not to mention, my equipment, was lacking.But I still had a eye for composition, or so I believed.And so I took a lot of waterfall pictures that particular morning, but again without the proper equipment – this case neutral density filters – to increase my exposure time to get nice and smooth water.  On my way back from taking a waterfall photograph that was up into the rain forest, off the beaten path, I found this scene. I loved the moss that seem to grow everywhere, and I knew I wanted a photograph of the mossy trees.It had been raining (it is a rain forest, after all!) and in between the showers, with the camera I had, I was able to make this photograph. For me this photograph captures the feeling and sense of what I felt as I loved hiking that trail that morning on my way to Hana!In May, I will return to Maui. I may even hike this particular trail again.  And with the experience and knowledge of photography I have learned over the years, I expect a great improvement in my photographs that I take in Maui. 

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Maui Rain forest

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Path thorugh the rain forest along the Road to Hana, Maui.

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Description

Path through the rain forest along the Road to Hana, Maui.

Additional information

Medium

Fine Art Print, Canvas Gallery Wrap, Metal (Satin Finish), Metal (Glossy Finish)

Size (in inches)

8.5×11, 11×14, 20×26, 20×30, 24×36

David's Artist Statement

My earliest memories of photography was high school, where I took black and white photographs for the yearbook. I remember the hours spent with chemicals, tanks and trays and the wonderful enlarger that could take you places you didn’t know existed. It was fun, at least for a teenager!

My next encounter with photography was with a Canon AE-1 fitted with a niffty 50mm f/1.4 lens that I used to take slides (yea, Ektachrome 64 to be exact, and yes I also did film, Velvia 50 which I loved for the richness of the colors). Thousands of slides later, I still have that camera. Many of my photographs from my time in Spain, Italy and Greece still survive as Ektachrome 64 slides that I will someday scan into digital.

All photography is about light. All photographers state that they “paint” with light. I look for more than just light, I look for textures, tones and colors. I find that the quality of light at the moment I click the shutter will bring out or reveal a color, tone or texture that wasn’t obvious just minutes before and will disappear minutes after. I revel in the glorious world around me, and sometimes I feel like a kid in awe of the simple beauty that I see before me.

I now capture and print images digitally – the same eye that I developed as a younger man but hopefully a wiser eye, bringing out the subtle or bold colors depending on how I have envisioned the photograph, incredible papers each designed to bring out special qualities of the photographs that I see. Each photograph is the work of my own hands. I do all my own printing and framing, and I do it to archival standards, which means my photographs will look like new for many years. You will pass these photographs on to your children and hopefully to your grandchildren when their time comes.

However, none of this is important if the photographs don’t engage you, don’t grab you, don’t claim you. Each one is an invitation to participate in a story. I just don’t take photographs, I make photographs – ‘memories’ of places and scenes that I share and pass on to you.

Peace,

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

OK, let’s put this most asked question to bed. Are these photographs enhanced?

Short answer – Yes. Unapologetically!

Long answer – ALL PHOTOGRAPHY requires that there is processing of some kind. Development process (film), Lens corrections, color correction, sharpening, setting black and white points – these are just a few basic processing actions required. Sometimes I apply various filters (at capture and in post processing), I dodge and burn (both digital and film), I crop, etc. to get the photograph I envisioned when I did my capture.

My basic philosophy of photography is that I work to capture an impression of a location. Sometimes a photograph doesn’t need much work and sometimes it does. I am not interested in simply documenting a location, otherwise I’d be a photojournalist, which I am not.

Ansel Adams once said that we don’t take photographs, we make them. This is my attempt at making photographs, which in turn is making art.

Are these photographs or is this art?

Huh?  Seriously, art is in the eyes of the beholder, art is what you make of it. For me, my work is art. For you, who knows but you!

As for photography being art, that question has been settled for almost a hundred years. Yes it is, pure, plain and simple as that.

What kind of cameras do you use?

I use a variety of digital and film cameras. Most notably Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 5DS r, Canon 5D Mark IV, Canon AE-1 (film), Canon EOS A2 (film), Sony A7rII and Sony A7rIII. My current camera for those who are interested is the Sony A7rIII.

Have you been to all these places? (Yes, people do ask me this!)

Ahhhhh . . . yes!  Sometimes many times over several years! I often find myself going back again and again to try to get the photograph’s I know I can get at any particular location. As always, we are limited to weather and the sunlight cooperating to get the best images. That is why I return – frequently!

How come my pictures don’t look like these?

To quote Ansel again, I don’t take photographs. . . I make photographs. That means sometimes waiting around for hours for the right moment, it means composing the scene, it means making lens decisions, it means determining my aperture or my ISO setting, it means some serious time spent in post processing (color corrections, dodging and burning, cropping, etc) and good print processes.

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A little bit about me . . .

Back in 1982, my Air Force roommate was in desperate need of some cash, and he had a camera. And I was in the market for a camera as I had TDY (Temporary Duty) orders for Cyprus and was looking for a good camera to take with me. So over some beers and some negotiations with my roommate (and a few hundred dollars later), I found that I had become the owner of a brand spanking new Canon AE-1 camera with an assortment of lens, including a Canon 50mm, a 35mm lens, as well as a telephoto lens.

Fast forward to today, and I am now an owner of a Canon 5D Mark II (looking to upgrade, but can’t decide on my next camera) and a bunch of Canon glass and I am primarily a landscape and travel photographer. Yea, that means that I get up before the sun rises and am out after the sun sets. Makes for interesting times!

Thank you for joining me on this photographic journey and hope to hear from you!

Peace,

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