New Mexico Adventure

Seeing the small things

In lieu of actually photographing weather, today dry air is moving in quickly to New Mexico leading to clear skies and a slight breeze.

The weather is perfect, how boring.

Today I decided to challenge myself creatively. I’m used to photographing big things like storms and mountains, so getting up on a mountain at 10,000′ and focusing on the small details is about as polar opposite of a subject as I could come up with. To add a bit more flavor, I decided to take a 20mm prime lens only (that’s a 40mm equivalent for 35mm equivalent nerds).

Doing photo walkabouts like this enables you to try new things and also possibly to discover a new type of photography you love. About a mile in, I decided to be stupid and sprain my ankle so if you think this post makes no sense blame the pain and medicine.

Anyways, here’s some photos from my experiment. Let me know how I did in the comments!

As with most of my images, my editing is pretty basic. I shot this wildflower exposed brightly for the wildflower and almost pitch black for the area around it due to the shade of the forest overhead. This created isolation but just enough context to show the forest floor around the flower.
This one is a fun flower with bright reds. The 20mm is one of my older lenses and its wide f/1.7 aperture keeps me coming back for it often in a variety of situations.
Again, I exposed brightly for the flowers with the forest behind this one out of focus due to a shallow depth of field because I shot this one wide open.
Moss growing on a tree stump with shadowing from the forest overhead. Nature takes care of itself and life finds a way. Pretty cool to experience ecosystems in detail.
This patch of flowers rose from the forest floor and had quite a lot of shadowing on them. I isolated these by ensuring the background was under exposed and the foreground slightly over exposed.
Shot almost straight down. I liked the shadow to light effect of the background due to the shade of the forest.
Another isolated subject, though I will admit these poor little flowers have probably seen more beautiful days. But their imperfection is a reminder to us all that we don’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.
The bark of an aspen tree. This hike was a reminder that we are very close to the aspens beginning their yearly glow routine. I can’t wait!
Me and my two puppies walking in the forest just before it all came crashing down (literally) a few minutes later. My ankle has been hurting ever since!

By Raychel Sanner

I'm a trans photographer and filmmaker based in New Mexico. I love adventure and travel and exploring my state. I chase down incredible storms and skies. I advocate for good mental health and for my trans siblings.

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