Waterfall in Russian Gulch State Park

May 9, 2013
Water Fall, Russian Gulch State Park, California; (c) Greg McKinney

Waterfall, Russian Gulch State Park, California; (c) Greg McKinney

Here is another oldie but goodie from my image archive.

We had heard that there was a nice little waterfall in Russian Gulch State Park in Mendocino County.  It was a nice hike from the parking lot (right off California Highway 1).  Walking through the canyon we could hear water flowing but could not see it due to the heavy vegetation.  When we finally got to the end of the canyon, we found this waterfall.

I used my Yashicamat 124 G TLR mounted on a tripod and Kodak Tmax 100 film to record this scene.  I used a slow shutter speed to blur the water.  In determining the exposure, I used my Pentax Spotmeter to read the shadow area near the moss covered log.

I placed the shadow in Zone II on the exposure scale hoping to capture just a hint of texture.  I was pretty happy with the resulting image with one possible reservation.  Even though the canyon had very little direct sun light, the scene was a little more contrasty than I first realized.  The water at the top of the fall was in sunlight, and is pure white in the final print (very dense on the negative).  I would have liked a little texture in that water, but there is none to be had.  Oh well, live and learn.


A Simple White Cross Marking a Forgotten Grave

May 6, 2013
Pioneer Grave, Northern California; (c) Greg McKinney

White Cross, Northern California; (c) Greg McKinney

I found this white cross on an otherwise unmarked grave in a small cemetery along a back-road in Northern California.  The grave is covered in overgrown vegetation, the paint on the simple wooden cross is peeling and I have no idea who is buried there.

I used my Mamiya 645 medium-format camera mounted on a tripod and Kodak Tmax 100 film to record this image.

Potted Tulips

April 25, 2013
Potted Tulips; (c) Greg McKinney

Potted Tulips; (c) Greg McKinney

Spring is in the air.  I took this photo a few years ago at Filoli.

Old Store Front, Symerton, Illinois

April 22, 2013
Old Store Front, Symerton, Illinois; (c) Greg  McKinney

Old Store Front, Symerton, Illinois; (c) Greg McKinney

It’s a long story but I remember the exact date I took this photograph, March 18, 1980.  Yes, that’s 33 years ago.  I was spending the day with 2 photographer friends exploring the back-roads of northern Illinois.  I found this old store front in the tiny town of Symerton.  It’s a very small village about 75 miles southwest of Chicago.  Once a railroad town, it was (and probably still is) a sleepy little wide spot on the road.

I was intrigued by the fact that this empty store front had peeling paint but perfectly clean, snow white, blinds in the windows.  I took the photo with my then newly acquired YashicaMAT 124G, a medium format twin-lens reflex (TLR) camera I picked up used for $25.  It was my first venture into medium format photography. I shot the photo on Kodak Plus-X film (rated at 125 ASA, that’s 125 ISO for you kids).

Ear of the Wind

April 16, 2013
Ear of the Wind, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona; (c) Greg McKinney

Ear of the Wind, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona; (c) Greg McKinney

I took this photo about 20 years on a mid-winter trip to Arizona.  The Ear of the Wind arch is one of my iconic rock formations in Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park.  It took the photo with a 28mm lens mounted on my Canon F1 on Kodachrome 64.  As I was getting ready to take the photograph, the only cloud in the sky moved into the center of the archway.


April 11, 2013
Dahlia #2; (c) Greg McKinney

Dahlia #2; (c) Greg McKinney

Here is the third (and final) dahlia image from the triptych I made.  All of the dahlia’s came from my father-in-law’s garden.  My wife and I gave him a framed triptych for his  birthday last year.

Carved Wooden Doors, Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico

April 8, 2013
Church Doors, Ranchos de Taod, New Mexico; (c) Greg McKinney

Church Doors, Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico; (c) Greg McKinney

The San Francisco de Asis Mission Church is located on the plaza in Ranchos de Taos, about four miles southwest of the town of Taos, New Mexico.  It’s believed that it was built between 1772 and 1816.  This small adobe church had drawn the attention of artists such as Georgia O’Keefe, Paul Strand, Ansel Adams, among others.  The rear exterior of the church has well known to me through those Strand and Adams photographs.  I had no idea what the rest of the church looked like.

When we arrived, several cars were parked right where those famous photographers had set their tripods years before.  Unable to mimic their photographs, I was forced to look for other views.  I found these carved wooden doors about 50 feet away .  Using my tripod mounted Mamiya 645 and Kodak Tmax 100 film, I came away with a image I can call my own.  I took this photograph in May of 2000 and while I’ve seen a least a dozen photographs made by others from around the plaza since then, I’ve never seen another showing these doors.  Maybe you have, but I have not.