Roan Mountain – Part #1

“Jane Bald”

It seems that this year has been a year of adventures and exploration allowing myself to reconnect and recharge the creative juices. We just returned from spending a week scouting for a new venue and future weekend summit at Roan Mountain.

My first impression of the area was quite breathtaking with the highland views and abundance of the rhododendrons. But of course, that was standing in the parking lot. (lol) Once we stated hiking and gained a little elevation the views were spectacular beyond words and rivaled the beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains.

So, let’s back up a bit and let me tell you about our adventures as the week progressed.  Upon arrival, we met up with our longtime friend Kevin Reaves. Anyone that meets Kevin will quickly realize he’s a high-energy guy (putting it mildly lol).

We arrived Sunday evening and after gobbling down a quick dinner, we voyaged up the mountain to Carver’s Gap to catch sunset. Kevin said he’d follow us in our 4Runner since all of his gear was in his Tundra truck (Toyota guys). Being our first time here and not knowing the area we relied heavily on our GPS to get us there. As I’m sure you know, GPS’s can be a bit unpredictable when they feel like it.  Our first turn up the mountain was on “Heaton Creek Road” and besides having a super awesome name it was a nice windy road through the country. Of course, that was for the first portion of our drive. As we journeyed on the road went from bad to worse to no road at all and suddenly turned into a craggy trail. I’d like to say logging path but it wasn’t even that good (lol). Here’s where I thank Toyota for making some awesome 4 wheel drives!

After reaching the top and figuring out where we were we realized there was a nicely paved road that lead us directly up and down the mountain.

What’s life without a little adventure… take the road less traveled is my motto…

Stay tuned as I continue my story in my next post…

www.edheaton.com

– Nikon D810
– Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8
– Exposure 1/10 sec
– Aperture f/16
– ISO 64
– Gitzo GT3542XLS SYSTEMATIC Series 3 carbon tripod
– Singh-Ray Filters LB Color Combo Polarizer
– OP/TECH USA Custom Classic Strap
– Lexar 1066x Professional 128gb
– HoodmanUSA
– Asolo
– Manfrotto

#GitzoAmbassador | #ManfrottoAmbassador | #OPTECHUSAAmbassador | #MyTrustyGitzo | #ImageMaster | #Hoodman | #MasterofLight | #BestofLight | #NikonLove | #NikonNoFilter | #GitzoInspires |

“Grassroots – Ramblings from the Smokies”

Good morning and happy Easter weekend,

Well, we finished up our much-anticipated and needed week in the great Smoky Mountains. We enjoyed our time and focused (no pun intended) on some of the most picturesque landscapes the Appalachians have to offer.

I titled this post “Grassroots” for a good reason because this is where I feel my photography career/passion started. Oh, don’t get me wrong I’ve been photographing since high school which in my case is quite some time now (lol). You know, back in the film days (early 70’s) before digital photography was actually invented.

We shot everything that was offered to us, amazing overlooks, extraordinary flowers and some of the most abundant and pristine creeks I’ve ever had the pleasure of shooting. As far as I’m concerned, the Great Smoky Mountains have some of the most diverse scenes a landscape photographer could ask for. We met up with some great friends and made a few new ones as well and I must say this was truly time well spent!  A special thanks to Kelly and Zach for joining me on this amazing adventure and spiritual journey.

Best of Light,

Ed
www.edheaton.com

– Nikon D810
– Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8
– Exposure 6 sec
– Aperture f/16
– ISO 64
– Gitzo GT3542XLS SYSTEMATIC Series 3 carbon tripod
– Singh-Ray Filters LB Color Combo Polarizer
– OP/TECH USA Custom Classic Strap
– Lexar 1066x Professional 128gb
– HoodmanUSA
– Columbia Sportswear
– Asolo
– Manfrotto Imagine More
– Fotodiox

#GitzoAmbassador | #ManfrottoAmbassador | #OPTECHUSAAmbassador | #MyTrustyGitzo | #ImageMaster | #Hoodman | #MasterofLight | #BestofLight | #NikonLove | #NikonNoFilter

“Invigorated – Ramblings from the Smokies”

Well, it’s been a great couple of days here in the Smokies.  Yesterday morning we explored the Cove and believe it or not we were the only ones on Spark’s Lane (I think that’s a first for me). A little early for the leaves but with these warm temps I’m sure it won’t be long. Then after a little downtime during the mid-day light we headed out to shoot along Little River road. We visited our favorite spots along the river and enjoyed chatting about life and how very blessed we are!

I’m very thankful for my family and friends and how the business has prospered. The photography business has been an incredible creative opportunity and I’m so thankful for all the amazing friends I’ve made along the way.

Before I sign-off I wanted to share some gear talk…  If you shoot as many creeks and streams as I do you will soon realize that a good pair of waders can be your best friend. Now, some of you may be curious as to what type of waders I actually use.  I have several different ones that I use, felt bottomed Chest Waders, and two different types of hip waders. The current ones that I have here in the Smokies are the Neos Overshoe Hip Waders. They are convenient and they slip over your hiking boot which helps to not have to remove your boots everytime. I hate to say it but they do weap a little water but not enough to get your feet soaked.  I think my favorites are felt bottom boot hip waders.  They are much more sure-footed with the felt soles but you do have to remove your boot to use them . But be mindful the felt soles are outlawed in some states.  I have to add a disclaimer – if you walk in the water with your gear there’s a chance that you will fall in and get everything wet, so be careful.

www.edheaton.com

– Nikon D810
– Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @36mm
– Exposure 2 sec
– Aperture f/16
– ISO 64
– Gitzo GT3542XLS SYSTEMATIC Series 3 carbon tripod
– Singh-Ray Filters LB Color Combo Polarizer
– OP/TECH USA Custom Classic Strap
– Lexar 1066x Professional 128gb
– HoodmanUSA
– Columbia Sportswear
– Asolo S.p.A.
– Manfrotto
– Fotodiox Inc..
#GitzoAmbassador | #ManfrottoAmbassador | #OPTECHUSAAmbassador#MyTrustyGitzo | #ImageMaster | #Hoodman | #MasterofLight |#BestofLight | #NikonLove |

 

One Frame

2012-1193

I was asked by my friend Mark Carruthers to do a blog about one of my favorite images that I’ve captured over the years and I wanted to share here as well.

Over the span of my career I’ve been very fortunate and have had the opportunity to create a collection of images that are extraordinary, but one stands above the rest. I’m sure some of it may have to do with location (although I’ve been to many amazing locations throughout the United States) but I believe the majority of it has to do with the connection that I have with the landscape.

Let me back up and paint the backdrop and atmosphere for this image. As a full time professional landscape photographer, there’s something enlightening and personal about being able to spend time with Mother Nature. Now don’t get me wrong, we all love to capture pretty pictures but to truly have a connection with the landscape is when you are able to create remarkable images.

I’ve been visiting and teaching workshops in the Grand Teton National Park since 2005 and I have to admit that it never gets boring or mundane. There’s always something new and exciting to photograph and let’s be honest, who could get tired of looking at that landscape.

As a workshop instructor, you wouldn’t be doing a good job if you didn’t allow your clients to capture a few of the classic iconic images and an image of Oxbow Bend is certainly a classic. During our 2012 autumn workshop, I had taken the group to capture sunrise with amazing results. However, as the day progressed and the storm clouds rolled through the light started to really become wonderful and as we all know, “photography is all about the light” and being able to capture extraordinary light is truly the key to success.

When you have a lot of ground to cover and only so much time to do it we don’t normally visit the same place twice during a workshop but there are always exceptions to the rules. So, we headed back up to Oxbow Bend to see if we could capture a reflection with the storm clouds and I have to admit my hunch certainly paid off allowing me to capture this amazing image of Oxbow bend with the storm light. When you’re teaching a workshop you never seem to have much time to capture your own images because you’re busy helping and instructing others but here the light was so amazing that I couldn’t resist firing off a shot.

A lot of people will say “boy you got lucky with this one” but I believe a well-prepared photographer will make his own luck by knowing how to read the light and being in the right place at the right time with the knowledge to capture what is presented before you.

Best of Light,
Ed

The Importance and Effect of Negative Space

2017-0161-1

Negative space is the area which surrounds the main subject in your image (the main subject is known as the “positive space”). For example; the house and tree in this image form the positive space while the sky is the negative space.

Negative space can drastically change the mood and story of your image. Much of the time, negative space is the mood and emotion. It can create a sense of bleakness, desolation, spaciousness and it can strengthen the positive atmosphere in your image. In summary, depending on what story you want to tell, the use of negative space affects it all. It can either emphasize all of these aspects or take away from your main subject if used incorrectly!

Metadata:

  • Nikon D810
  • Nikkor Lens – 70-200mm f/2.8 @70mm
  • Gitzo GT3542xls tripod
  • Lexar CF Card
  • Hoodman USA
  • OP/TECH USA Classic Strap
  • Nik Software
  • Exposure – 1/20 seconds
  • Aperture – f/122
  • ISO – 64
  • Manual Mode

Best of Light,

Ed

Welcome Back Ed

_dsc5384

Good Morning,

“Forgive me for I have sinned” just a figure of speech…  But it has been quite some time since my last blog post and to be honest there’s no sense in me being that unenergetic!  Life seems to have a way of changing your plans or preoccupying your main focus. Not to be making excuses, but we had a busy season last year and at the end of that season it was nice to take a break and focus on family. However, now that the new year has kicked off and our workshop season has already started I wanted to keep current with my ramblings and thoughts on my blog.

With one wildly successful winter workshop down, (Blackwater Falls) and our second winter workshop (Letchworth) kicking off next weekend I’m really excited about working and sharing information again.  There is no better feeling than working with people and watching for that “aha” moment when they actually understand and can relate to what you’re teaching.

Metadata:

  • Nikon D810
  • Nikkor Lens – 14-24mm f/2.8 @14mm
  • Gitzo GT3542xls tripod
  • FotoDiox 145mm Polarizer
  • Lexar 1066x Professional 128gb CF Card
  • Hoodman USA
  • OP/TECH USA Classic Strap
  • Nik Software
  • Exposure – 1.3 seconds
  • Aperture – f/16
  • ISO – 64
  • Manual Mode

Best of Light,

Ed

www.edheaton.com

Crystal Mill

2016-8207-1

Greetings,

Zach and I just got home from teaching a workshop in stunning Colorado and what a great time it was! All of our workshops are intense learning experience for everyone and for us it’s no less than an awesome adventure!

Before our workshop started Zach and I thought we would visit Crystal Mill and I can honestly say it was the most adventurous road we have ever driven. When people tell you, it’s a rough road and only a four-wheel-drive vehicle will make it is certainly an understatement (lol). We had a new 2016 Toyota 4Runner with high clearance and believe it or not it was a challenge for that. Of course it had stock tires and would’ve been much better equipped if it had some nice all terrains on it. The weather was a little undecided and was pouring the snow down in the mountains which allowed me to capture slightly more drama than the typical mill shot.

All in all, it was a tremendous adventure and I look forward to the next one 🙂

Metadata:

  • Nikon D810
  • Tamron Lens –SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC
  • Gitzo GT3542xls tripod
  • Lexar CF Card
  • Nik Software
  • Exposure – 1.5 seconds
  • Aperture – f/16
  • ISO – 64
  • Manual Mode

Best of Light,

Ed