- Andy Anderson has made several pilgrimages to Lone Pine, California, mostly just to see the Cretaceous granite rocks. One stormy late-October day he scouted the area for hours, looking for exactly the right geological arrangement: the sloping shape of the boulder in the foreground, the weathered Alabama Hills behind. Then he photographed his friend and fellow Idaho lensman Woods Wheatcroft running through the scene. "I tried to make it so it's not your typical, predictable running shot," says Anderson, a commercial and fine-art photographer based in Boise. "I stayed away from that old seventies and eighties filtration: yellow, bright and beautiful, predictable, stocky, passé."
Instead he used a brown warming filter with his 190mm lens, exposing 100-speed film at f/8 for 1/200 second.
- Adam Gaynor was driving through western Yellowstone at sunrise on a November morning when he spotted this lone subject and pulled over. "The buffalo is such a magnificent animalpure greatness," says the New York City-based photographer, adding, "I had one eye on my lens and one eye on my escape route."
Gaynor exposed 400-speed film for 1/25 second with his 35mm lens set to f/11.
- Todd Hido photographed this sandy access road in Salisbury Beach, Massachusetts, one foggy night while driving around. The San Francisco-based landscape photographer mostly shoots after dark. "People often think this looks like snow, but it's just really thick haze. The night makes the conditions ambiguous."
Hido shot with a 6x7 camera and a 75mm lens set at f/22. Using only the light of the street lamp, he exposed 400-speed print film for six minutes.
- Martin Sundberg got this atmospheric shot of running buddy Eric Raffini on the punishing Dipsea Trail, just north of San Francisco in the Marin Headlands, one foggy autumn morning when the two were tackling the famous 14-mile loop. "The conditions were crummythere was no lightand I was really nervous about holding still long enough for the slow exposure," says the Berkeley, California-based photographer, 31.
Sundberg used 160-speed film, with the film-speed setting on 400 and a 28-105mm lens set at f/4, opening the shutter for 1/8 second.
- Terri Weifenbach was exploring the National Arboretum, in Washington, D.C., when she shot these unconventional landscapes. "At first, the leaf and the blade of grass may seem like the subjects," says the D.C.-based fine-art photographer and a vocational rock climber, "but I'm much more intrigued by the suggestion of loneliness in these photosand, of course, ending up with beautiful, painterly images."
Weifenbach used 25-speed film, with the film-speed setting on 12 and a 35mm lens set at f/2, opening the shutter for 1/250 second.
- Todd Meier was near Glacier Point, in California's Yosemite National Park, when he captured this softly rendered scene of a sunset illuminating Half Dome. "It's really intimidating to go to a place that's been photographed a million times, and by the best," says the 33-year-old Boise, Idaho-based lensman. "But I walked away happy that day."
Meier used an eight-by-ten view camera, exposing the negative for 1/50 second at f/5.6.
- Gaylen Morgan has been shooting the Atlantic horizon from Maine's Blue Hill Bay since the summer of 2002. Her seascapes are meant to convey "a sense of quiet," says the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based photographer. "And I want them to seem both real and unreal."
Morgan prefers to shoot early in the day, using a Hasselblad 500 C/M camera with a 60mm Zeiss lens and 400-speed film.
- Ron Pierce was driving out of Yosemite Valley after a weekend of cross-country skiing when he rounded a bend and saw El Capitan's 1,000-foot Horsetail Fall looking like a cascade of fire. "The light from the setting sun shot right across the face of El Cap," says the 61-year-old landscape photographer, who lives in Carmel Valley, California. "Such a perfect alignment can happen only a few days a year."
Pierce exposed 64-speed film for 1/4 second with a 50mm lens set at f/8. "Within two minutes," he says, "it was gone."
- Dodo Jin Ming got drenched while creating this double-exposed shot of waves off the coast of Maine. "To me, the sea looks like fire and water at the same time," says the New York City-based Ming, 51. "I bring that out by overlapping two images"in this case, taken in rapid succession. A professional violinist before turning to photography, Ming's other favorite storm spots include Canada's Vancouver Island and the coastline near Hong Kong.
She used an 80mm lens on her Graflex XL three-by-four, exposing 80-speed Polaroid film.
- William Lamson takes a road trip every year in search of modern American landscapes, but, says the 28-year-old Brooklyn-based photographer, "you don't always find things to shoot when you're out driving around." Which is why a series of "self-portraits," in which Lamson figures more as prop than subject, seemed the perfect side project. "So much of photography is designarranging objects in space," he says.
- Using a cable release both to trip the shutter and divide the frame, Lamson made the images here and on the following pages with a Fuji six-by-nine rangefinder camera and Superia 100 print film. ("It's like $1.79 a roll," he says, "the cheapest Fuji makes.")
- Every evening March through November, these Mexican free-tail batssome 20 million of thememerge from Bracken Cave, near San Antonio, to feed on insects. By daybreak they will have consumed 200 tons' worth. "When they emerge," says London-based Tim Flach, "you can feel the wind rushing by you." Flach, standing 15 feet from the entrance of the cave, caught this image as the bats were circling overhead in order to gain liftcalled a vortexbefore streaming away for the night. In the morning, when they return, the bats zip into the cave at nearly 60 miles per hour. "I've been fortunate enough to see a number of natural wonders," he says, "but the bats will stay in my mind for the rest of my life."
THE TOOLS: Hasselblad 203FE, 50mmf/2.8 lens, Ilford Delta 3200 Pro ISO 800, f/8, 1/1,000 second
- "When people see this shot, they're not quite sure what they're looking at," says Blake Gordon. "With the symmetry, it almost looks like a reflection." What they're looking at is the underside of 268-foot-long Sipapu Bridge, in Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah. Gordon, who lives outside Aspen, Colorado, captured the image during a night-photography trip through the Colorado Plateau last January. Natural Bridges proved the perfect spot: Last year it was designated the world's first International Dark Sky Park. "The scale of things seems so much bigger at night," says the 27-year-old. "And being out in Canyon Country, alone in winter, with cliffs that span millions of years and drop hundreds of feet, that vastness is magnified even more."
THE TOOLS: Nikon D3, 14mmf/2.8 lens, ISO 800, f/2.8, 30 seconds
- Each fall, nearly 40,000 runners and two million spectators descend on the streets of the Big Apple for the New York City Marathon. Participants, like those pictured making their way off the Queensboro Bridge at last year's event, have run the same coursethrough all five boroughssince 1976. "Coming up with something unique is a challenge," says the New York-based Vincent Laforet. "The race is run in the same locations, year after year, and shot by hundreds of photographers." To find something new, Laforet took his lens 1,500 feet overhead, shooting through the open door of a Twinstar helicopter. "From above, you appreciate the three-dimensional aspect of our world," he says. "The water and the reflections on the pavementthose are from all the discarded water cups."
THE TOOLS: Canon 1DsMark II,500mmf/4 lens, ISO250, f/6.3, 1/1,250 second
- In winter, beach signposts on the shore of New York's Lake Ontario get battered by freezing spray from waves breaking along the rocky shore, sometimes creating ephemeral ice sculptures. "They have a surreal, almost animated quality," says Tucson-based Lisa Robinson, who photographed the scene for her book, Snowbound. "These signs were right behind a beachside snack shop," she says. "I went back to that location two different times over the next two weeks. Itw as never the same."
THE TOOLS: Wisner 4x5, 210mm f/5.6 lens, ISO 160, f/64, 1/4 second
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