Location: This is Horseshoe Bend located near the city of Page, Arizona. A short hike will take you from the parking area, just off Highway 89, to this magnificent viewpoint. The river down below is the Colorado just after it leaves Lake Powell through the Glen Canyon Dam. There are no guard rails, and in order to be able to photograph the entire bend in the river you have to get right up to the edge of some pretty high cliffs. Many people will lie an their stomach while they take pictures. Here's an example of that.
About the Photo: It had been raining all morning, but we were determined to hike out to Horseshoe Bend. Just as we pulled up the parking area it stopped raining. We hiked out and spent an hour taking pictures, then headed back to the car. Just as we got inside the car it started raining again, HARD! Now that’s what I call lucky.
This was my second visit to Horseshoe Bend. I had come the year before, but this visit had a lot more greenery. It had been a very wet winter and spring in Arizona this particular year, and everywhere you went the desert was green and lush. Especially down by Phoenix, as you can see in this picture from the same trip.
UPDATE: May 10, 2006
Post Processing: I thought I would add an explanation about the post processing, just in case anyone is interested. First I used levels to brighten the scanned image (simply because after scanning a slide it looks pretty dark). Then I increased the saturation by +10, for the same reason. Then I resized and sharpened it.
The metallic blue sheen on the river is due to the skies reflection. The darker areas are where the dark rain clouds cast their shadows. The high contrast in this image is the result of using Velvia slide film. Any post processing I due is simply an attempt at making the scanned image look like the original slide. Being the Photoshop novice that I am, some times this is easier said than done.
Thanks for the critiques. I appreciate your opinions.
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Critiques | Translate
poulinp (4528) 2006-05-09 22:19
Very impressive, looks unreal. Great shot, beautiful colors.
Catli (550) 2006-05-09 22:41
Great point of view. YOu are very lucky indeed to avoid the rain and get just enough light to highlight the rock in the centre and catch the magnificent metallic blue of the river. Thank you for sharing.
chefrancisco (752) 2006-05-09 22:45
Wow! Here's another excellent photo coming from you! Your choice of exposure and DOF combination went really well to provide the details of the rock formation and the brilliant mix of colors! I must say that your difficult hike paid off - really, really well! (Hmm.. Now I will ask. Are you sure you didn't just cut and paste this from the National Geo? Hehe..)
Hope to see some more pics from your trip.
zeca (19762) 2006-05-09 22:47
It's a wonderful place, Ryan! TFS! The perspective is fantastic and Arizona is beautiful in this green mood. Your picture is very clear, presenting nice sharp details and lights. Congratulations for your work!
All the best!
alford (3961) 2006-05-09 23:03
Hi Ryan! Your patience paid off. You were rewarded with a great view and shot! The colors and sharpness are excellent! Your notes are very useful, the viewer can understand what it takes to get to the place. Isn't it a bit dangerous to climb to the top of the hills? rgds.
DownUnder (1177) 2006-05-09 23:05
Hi Ryan, spectacular view, I think pp is over done..
dvlazar (6644) 2006-05-10 0:07
A beautiful photo - I personaly like the vibrant and strong colors that exist in the photo. What a stunning location in the U.S,
axiotea (21647) 2006-05-10 2:18
Hi Ryan, what a fantastic view! good POV..(.not easy to photograph such a place..)light and colors are great as well..TFS...
DarkoG (8) 2006-05-10 3:43
This is really amazing place.
Your photo is nice with very impressive colours and good composition.
tjanze (5674) 2006-05-10 3:53
Wow! Amazing pastel colors.Beautiful catch this piece of nature.Bravo!
luisafonso (862) 2006-05-10 4:41
I love the warm colors on this scene. They are really deep without being oversaturated. The reflexes on the water are striking and really mark the strong character of the picture. Sharpness is perfect. Regarding the composition I am still battling with that cropped top. I am not sure if I like it or not. Probably I would have left it. One thing is for sure, I am missing some space on the top. Besides that, very good. Almost chimerical!
lucinka (9976) 2006-05-10 4:53
Ryan, let me say WOW!! What a shot, what a place and what colors!! What a fantastic capture of absolutelly stunning place! Very informative note too. I definately have to go there too. Thanks for sharing. Lucie
PS: I've just noticed you are not in my favorites yet.. well, I have to do something about it, not to miss your new great shots :)
m_s_s (1687) 2006-05-10 5:37
Beautiful photo, great colours, nice composition. well done.
quelquepart (810) 2006-05-10 6:25
So impressive : sharp picture and vivid colours of the water reflecting the sky. I like it !
Floydian (30970) 2006-05-10 8:27
I know this place, but have to find out where it exactly is.
Vistiting this place is high on my list in September since i saw this picture a few years ago.
Yours is deep of color toning, something i really like. Maybe the top should be on it, but what i have read about this place that even de widest wide-angle has problems with the scale of the area. Most pictures i have seen were 3 stitch panorama shots. Considering that, you made a beauty of it with high class potential.
Great work, in perfect light..!!!
baba_flies (8829) 2006-05-10 12:50
Endlessly fascinating what nature offers ... and you did a fantastic job with your picture. You got it all right, just so pretty how the river goes around the old "stone" ...
ChristianS (2997) 2006-05-10 15:07
Wonderful scenery, the PoV is fantastic. As soon as I saw the picture and the superbly saturated colours I guessed that this has to be the result of a Velvia film and I was right. The light is very nice and I like how the sky is mirrored on the water. Well done!
AmiBe (6042) 2006-05-10 16:03
superb colors and good long exposure effect on the water.
Good POV as well, an impressive place.
danielswalsh (13591) 2006-05-10 20:46
I've seen a few shots from this location, but yours stands out from the rest thanks to the stronger contrast. Giving the water an almost metalic sheen to it.
I'm guessing this was done in post production with the burn tool? I've been playing around recently with some of the settings in my 5D, and one of them lets you adjust the contrast in the camera itself... kind of fun to play around with.
Nice one Ryan, keep up the good work!
servin (474) 2006-05-11 14:08
magnifique photo, j'en ai le souffle coupé.
les coulurs sont vives.
Sting (69) 2006-05-11 16:50
Hi Ryan , I see I have a lot to learn!Thank you for the workshop-photo: Great.About this photo:first I thought it was a photo from a plane.I love the contrast of that blue and brown.Greetings from Edgar.
PJE (20756) 2006-05-11 18:28
Ryan this is an unbelievable scene you have captured. I love this place and hopefully some day find the time to see it for myself. Excellent color and good resolution details rendered. Thanks for sharing and for stopping by!
Eben (147) 2006-05-12 10:35
I have seen lots of photos of this place and to tell the truth yours is my favourite, I like the green contrast too the brown stone. eben
larevedere (1259) 2006-05-12 15:34
Incredible photo! Taken in great moment... the colours are great... and the plants... all that make it beautiful!!!
Congratulations and TFS!
gary91 (15345) 2006-05-13 1:20
I am glad as well that you found my gallery because yours is really fantastic. The shape of this canyon seen from a wide angle and the incredible colors exploded by Velvia are really superb.
A gret image !
Rodrigues (1035) 2006-05-13 19:10
Impressive light, impressive colours. The high contrast makes it very appeling. The colour of the river is simply...strange (I read the note). Was this a long exposure or a short one?
pboehringer (770) 2006-05-13 20:18
What can I say? I'm in shock in awe.
Did you send a copy to National Geographic? They would hire you right away.
kensimage (8557) 2006-05-13 21:17
I have a shot taken from almost exactly the same spot, but at a drier time of year. (I think you also have better reflections off the water, along with that Velvia color.) It's interesting to see the quite different amount of greenery. Nice! Regards, Ken.
javierdenavea (633) 2006-05-14 5:06
Hello Ryan, the colours and the persepective are very impressive... and after seing your link I see that your hobby is becoming a kind of adventure/risk sport (just joking).
Sina (1118) 2006-05-15 17:12
When i first look, i guess this can be macro working :) a stone and some rain water
Nice photo Ryan,
dHitman (0) 2006-05-15 23:41
I've seen many a picture from this famous place but you have managed to captured the essence really well. The colors and details are just lovely. Oh how I missed those Velvia....
sebinho342 (19317) 2006-05-16 8:05
Hello Ryan (this time i can read your name ;) ), i was sure to have commented this one cause i already saw it .... so i repare this unjustice and let some few words on it, excellent composition here and you succeed in having the whole river, almost forming a circle.
The SHARPNESS is EXCELLENT !!
Waoow, excellent work in resizing without losing quality
I'll come back in your gallery cause you are really good !
Elaine_Blath (8509) 2006-05-16 8:31
again me...wow! Breathtaking landscape...and the photo quality is so excellent...it is almost artistic picture, all my congratulations for it!
rbcy1974 (20758) 2006-05-17 2:49
I have just discovered your gallery, you have some amazing work!
Really impressive view, specially after seeing what has to be done to get it. Amazing POV, looks like an "Earth from Above" photo.
martou (1656) 2006-05-17 13:36
amazing photo of this amazing place, really spectacular view of this river, great exposure, good work,
Mistral (15396) 2006-05-17 16:05
Impressive shot of a stunning place.
Love the reflections but not only, as your PoV it's perfect!
Great interesting note too!
emmari (235) 2006-05-19 17:02
A great masterpiece of art!
guillaumejm (0) 2006-05-19 17:12
Only regrets :the framing because upper part is missing.
Else colours & reflects are extraordinary!.
Murmeli (2037) 2006-05-19 18:01
reparei que vc usa uma camera "argentica". e me pergutei sobre o post processing. Agora sei, sua nota é interessante !
tem uma razăo especial porque vocę năo fez aparecer a parte superior da pedra ?
mas mesma assim acho a compisiçăo prefeita ! Bravo !
hdl (6995) 2006-05-19 18:30
I'm getting vertigo by watching this ;-). Very original and excellently done.
patriik (1935) 2006-05-20 15:33
NOW I SEE YOU ARE MY FAVORITE ARTIST!!!
Luan (12971) 2006-05-21 5:21
you picture gallerie is awesome ! Thanks to your visit I discovered some fantastic landscapes like this one. Outstanding PoV, it give me some giddiness, the colors and the constrast of the rocks and of the water are beautiful. Nothing to modify here, good shot !
buzelman (0) 2006-05-23 0:36
Once more a fantastic shot! Great colours and a wonderful landscape! Of course it needs also a lot of artistic ability!
leiju (1697) 2006-06-10 12:16
Now this is some seriously amazing photography.
The curve in the image, that wonderfully blue river simply pulls the eye in and doesn't let go. One almost forgets to look around in the picture. What a mesmerizing POV!
It's an interesting effect though, the more I look at it and the more I see. What also pops into mind is whether the picture is slightly tilted or not. Perhaps it's due to the cuts in the hill smack in the middle, perhaps it's due to the region, I don't know.
But whatever the case, it is a stunningly powerful shot :D
Brilliant work! TFS!
bogna (126) 2006-06-13 9:15
Twoje zdjęcia s± wspaniałe, niezwykłe i niepowtarzalne
priyasri_80 (363) 2006-09-01 4:08
Great shot. Well captured. Wonderful colors of the water.
Polonaise (5796) 2006-09-02 14:57
Man o' man.
Wizardry of Arizona rocks.
You managed to make my head go spinning in the crazy dance of bemusement.
vthomas (441) 2006-10-29 10:03
This is SO incredible!
I've got no meaningfull words to describe how much I like this one! It's like a 300 feet tall guy has forgotten his vinyl here! ;-) The blue/grey metallic effect is just amazing!
It sure looks better than your post of today (your first street photo), no I'm kidding ;-) But I wanted to comment about it and then it disapeared !? It wasn't that bad... I mean it was bad, sure, but not "that" bad... Haha, sorry I'm trying to make you feel bad... hehe
What happened to it anyway?
pburraco (861) 2007-05-14 14:19
I have seen this place before from the same spot (a panoramic view?), but now its on Velvia! I love it.
hookery (621) 2007-05-22 2:40
Maravilloso, el color y composición son muy buenos... si la punta de la montańa no estuviese cortada, sería perfecta.
crckt (7216) 2007-05-23 19:20
i love all your photos. excellent!
delic (6735) 2008-03-29 6:56
There I found it! Can't really beat Velvia when it comes to color. I have a similar shot taken with a 28 mm lens but like the wider view better. The colors here are incredible though, and I think you owe it to the rain. One thing I notice is how much the water level has come down since 1996. I've been reading about the drought that started roughly in 2000. It is likely to be a long-term situation with the Colorado supplying only half the necessary water in Southwest by 2050. Check out Richard Seager's work published in May 2007 issue of Science, page 1181. Best wishes,
PS: Ever been to Coyote Buttes South? I'll be there next week.
banyanman (7772) 2009-12-17 7:44
I spotted this in your randoms, Ryan, and immediately thought it was an HDR image. But after reading your PP update, I am now enlightened. Some days I yearn to go back to film when I see the results that can be achieved. I can't add much to what has already been written above in the well-deserved critiques for this magnificent image. One of many in your superb gallery that you can be proud of. Cheers . . . David
yang_yt (793) 2010-03-18 6:48
What a splendid view it is! Just love it! Your skill express how great it is adequately.
Meglodon (105) 2012-07-19 13:20
Hi ya Ryan,
Wow, what a shot, Color, detail, composition are all spot on. As mentioned definitely worth the hike.
Great note to explain the location & the post work. Excellent.
kasianowak (2263) 2012-09-03 2:47
Wonderful colours and composition.
Well done on post processing, it's spot on!
- Copyright: Ryan Thayne (euryan) (8432)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2005-03-20
- Categories: Nature
- Camera: Canon EOS 3, Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L USM, Fuji Velvia
- Exposure: f/22
- Details: Tripod: Yes
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): the WAVE on rocks, Twins? [Part XVI], American Southwest, My Best Shots, My wish list... [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2006-05-09 22:08
- Favorites: 16 [view]