One thing I remember Chuck saying as we drove around together was something like, “you have to believe there is an image everywhere”.   He went on to say that he thinks with rare exception this is true.  Will it be a gallery shot?  Not always but you can find something if you believe.   Of course in my Dream – Believe – Create program, I speak of believing in yourself but Chuck is speaking about something else.  He is speaking about believing that there is indeed an image almost everywhere to be found.  You just have to believe there is.  I think he is right on.  So often we look at a place and if beauty is not staring us in the face we tend to walk away.  Anyone can stand at Zabriskie Point in Death Valley and see the obvious shot of Manly Beacon, however put them in the salt flats or Dunes and it might not be so easy.  Chuck told one highly skilled participant to slow down and stop chasing images.  He suggested that he be still and let the images come to him.  Without a camera, evaluate the scene, read the light, look for elements that will work together, consider what your post processing options might be.  Sound familiar?  I’ve spoken about this before here on the blog as well as in my lectures.  Easier said than done.  I still find myself doubting and forcing, so it was nice to hear Chuck’s gentle reminder.  Now, go believe you can find an image in your backyard and make it.  Then send me an email with the image!  I’d love to see what you come up with.

Today’s image is again from the Dunes.  A very different image from the previous one in that is is not as contrasty and more subtle.  It has become one of my favorites from the trip.

This entry was posted in B&W, Chuck Kimmerle, Death Valley, Inspiration, Landscape.


  1. Daniel Ruf March 7, 2013 at 7:06 pm #

    Great insights and beautiful b/w work. It sounds like a great trip.

    • john8276 March 7, 2013 at 7:19 pm #

      Thanks Dan. Always appreciate your support and comments.

  2. Chuck Kimmerle March 7, 2013 at 7:11 pm #

    Absolutely. There are worthy photos anywhere and everywhere, we just have to open our eyes, minds, and hearts and stop chasing grandeur and blatancy, and learn to embrace subtly and reticence. Sounds a bit hypocritical coming from a trip in Death Valley, but I do firmly believe it.

    Love that photo, John. Funny how differently we seeing and presenting the dunes.

    • john8276 March 7, 2013 at 7:18 pm #

      What? Death Valley is subtle, no? Yes, interesting to see that we do have our own unique vision even though we were standing in pretty much the same place.

  3. Phyllis Burchett March 8, 2013 at 2:32 pm #

    Thank for this post John and what lovely image. I know sometimes I think I have to be in some exotic place to get the images that I think are “gallery” worthy but I have to admit that my most successful ones have come from right here where I live. So thanks so much for this reminder….stop, slow down and let the images come to me.

    • john8276 March 8, 2013 at 2:41 pm #

      You’re welcome Phyllis. As you know I’m a big fan of your “local” images.

  4. Alice Olive March 8, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    Oh, wow. I love how subtle this is. Makes me notice the texture so much more. Absolutely beautiful.

    I agree, there is an image everywhere. Especially when you’re the one who’s looking!

    • john8276 March 8, 2013 at 4:50 pm #

      Thanks Alice, You are a great example of finding images everywhere!

  5. Michel Taupin March 12, 2013 at 12:55 am #

    Beautiful shot John. Very special

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