I went on a magnificent adventure over the summer of 2014. My aunt and I started our bold voyage in June out into the unknown…just kidding, we really just went to Utah and Arizona, but in the desert it might as well be called the unknown. Our trip started out in Springdale, UT at Zion Nation Park. This stop was my favorite out of the whole trip. The towering slabs of rock were so red it looked as though they burst into flames when the sun hit the sides of it. The hikes were impressive, leaving me speechless at each switchback, crest and waterfall. The highlight of the day was Angel’s Landing, a five mile hike with an elevation gain of 1488 feet. The panorama you see of Zion is from the peak of said hike. It was a glorious day that I will never forget, and I am definitely planning on returning in the future. Our next stop was Page, Arizona where we ended up in Antelope Canyon (the picture to the right.) If that canyon doesn’t take your breath away I don’t know what will. That place is indescribable, you simply have to experience the beauty yourself to understand. The canyon is made up of sandstone, the upper one being above ground and the lower one being below earth’s surface. Water from heavy rainfall, flash floods and rivers flowed through and carved it all, that’s why it looks so smooth and water-like. After Page we drove down past the Grand Canyon and entered Williams where we stayed a couple nights. From there we traveled to Coolidge, but took a pitstop in Sedona, where the picture on the right was taken. Sedona’s “Red Rock.” Overall, my summer was amazing and I will never forget the awe-inspiring adventures I went on.
Spencer Brown is from the southern coast of the UK and just won his first award in the Sony World Photography Awards. Though he has only been doing photography for two years, he’s spent them mostly doing long exposure photography, exploring and discovering new and inventive photography skills. In a recent interview, Brown stated “At the moment I try to create a mystical, magical feeling to my images. Something that draws the viewer into the image.”
After getting inspired from looking at long exposure photographers online, he crammed in all the information he could from books, YouTube, the internet, and other sources. Soon he ordered a Big Stopper and B&W ND110 filters and got to work (a Big Stopper is a long exposure filter that extends exposure times, allowing anything that’s moving in the image to become blurred or ghost like, like clouds, rivers, waterfalls, etc.) Since Spencer lives only 5 minutes from the beach, his main focus is on the ocean and seascapes. He tries to recreate the milky waters and blurred skies from those that he sees on the internet from his favorite photographers. He taught himself all he knows through trial and error. He particularly has a fascination photographing anything that sticks out of the water such as jetties, piers, posts, and fences. He goes out on a shoot usually just before or after storms because of the ever changing light. Although his work has been limited to Dorset, he plans to extend himself and travel to Canada, Iceland, Norway and the United States to eventually become one of the world’s most famous long exposure photographers.
A colorization of “A Sailor’s Kiss” on V-J day, August 14 1945 at Times Square in New York. Taken by Alfred Eisenstaedt, this image is one of the most famous photos of the 20th century. It captures the spontaneity and energy of the nation on this day that the Japanese had surrendered and the War in the Pacific was over. People were buzzing all over the place, giving celebratory kisses and cheers to everyone in sight.
My series is the coast of The Big Island, Hawaii. I was so captured by the beauty when I went there over Christmas Vacation, and wanted to share it all with you. It’s the most beautiful place I have ever been to. The diversity of the island itself is incredible, from rocky lava cliffs to soft white sand. The Big Island has 11 of the 13 possible climates in the world, which is what makes this place so unique. In my series there are black and green sand beaches located next to South Point on the southern most tip of the island, not to mention the United States. Anaeho’omalu, La’aloa, Mauna Kea, Mauna Lani and Kahalu’u Beaches and resorts are on the west side, or Kona side, of the island. Waipi’o Valley is up north on your way to Hilo. I loved this island and the contrasting landscapes all over, making for some amazing photography opportunities. The Hawaiian Islands are my world, my home away from home. I’m a hula dancer and grew up surrounded by my halau ohana and have been exposed to the Hawaiian culture since I was four years old. I understand the ways of the people and what the land-aina- meant to them, I feel the energy when I step onto a pahoehoe lava field, or on the white powdery sands. Places of power are almost everywhere you go. When I see the coast of Hawaii, I see the ancient Polynesians going out to sea in their carefully crafted canoes made out of Koa wood, I see the lava flowing thousands of years ago, creating the land that’s right beneath our feet. Everything is energy, water and air are the two main sources of enlightenment in us, they’re alive. When the ocean and land meet it’s like two worlds coming together, infused in one another, forced to work together. One source of energy crossing paths with another, becoming one. The world is one, people are one, we are all one. That is what this series says to me, that it signifies life in all aspects. Water and land are very different, consisting of completely different plants, animals, and other species. They need different things, want different things, and live differently than each other. But they still come together as one. Stepping into the ocean is entering a whole new world, when I see the coast I see not a line that separates us from the rest of the world, but a portal into it. To new lands and places, to new discoveries, to magical sights. To an escape, perhaps. I believe this series captures the essence of that world, and what we can learn from it.