The Palouse from 4,000 feet


After seeing a friends aerial images of the Palouse, Dan and I decided we wanted to give it a try too. We each rented a Cessna 172 and scheduled two one hour flights. One in the morning and another in the evening. We liked it so much, we decided to do one more evening flight after the tours ended. Below is a collection of some images I like thus far.

Because you are moving and shooting out of a windy window, it becomes a challenge to make perfect compositions. I took about 600 images during the three flights and quickly realized not to worry about perfect composition in camera. I would do some cropping in post.

All images were taken with my Fuji X-T1 and 18-55mm lens. Remember this is an APS system so that translates to about 28-70 full frame. I never felt I needed more or less than that. It was the perfect lens for this situation. 
































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  1. Dorine August 29, 2014 at 8:05 am #

    wow, what an experience….and gorgeous photos, too!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 8:09 am #

      Thanks Dorine. It was great fun! Can’t wait to do it again in the Harvest next year.

  2. Victoria August 29, 2014 at 8:34 am #

    Absolutely amazing. These images are all stunning. It’s impossible to choose a favorite.

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 10:58 am #

      Thanks Victoria! It was great fun!

  3. Rich August 29, 2014 at 8:39 am #

    Nice set John. The compositional lines are quite abstract and the shades of green, awesome. It is interesting to compose on the “fly” like that. I had that experience in Alaska on a ship, which was a bit slower than your airplane. It forces you to think fast and find the composition quickly. It’s kind of like aerobics for your creativity.

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 9:05 am #

      Well put Rich. That about sums it up!

  4. Bruce Sorrell August 29, 2014 at 8:57 am #

    Absolutely fantastic set of images, John ! Like Victoria I can’t choose a favorite no matter how hard I try. They are all beautiful in a sort of other-worldly fashion.

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 9:04 am #

      Thank you Bruce. I’ll have one more set coming so stay tuned!

  5. Scott Oberle August 29, 2014 at 10:20 am #

    Wow JB, these are magic. The view from altitude opens up an entirely new perspective on the area. Can’t wait until the next set…

  6. Scott August 29, 2014 at 10:44 am #

    Great shots! Some of the photos look like high resolution Google Earth shots.

  7. Rona Schwarz August 29, 2014 at 10:44 am #

    These are fabulous, John!! I love their abstract quality and the height really seems to define the shadows and light on the rolling hills which brings out the textures so well. Amazing you can get such great detail from the air! Looking forward to more!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 10:50 am #

      Thank you Rona. I will have one more set of images to post.

  8. Mary M Butler August 29, 2014 at 11:29 am #

    Beautiful images John, productive flights!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 11:41 am #

      I was waiting for you to comment Mary! Mary is the “friend” whose images we saw and loved! And who helped us find a pilot!

  9. DICK August 29, 2014 at 12:33 pm #

    John & Dan:
    the many times I’ve been to the Palouse I often tell myself that “next time” I will look into a balloon or plane ride. Thanks for once again reminding me to get off my a$$. Wonderful images, they seem to blend The Palouse and the EMP.

  10. Stephan Dietrich August 29, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

    WOWness! Quite the experience! These are all awesome! Did the aeriel scouting offer any new discoveries down below? I can see a fleet of Cessnas for your workshop participants! Skyman Productions!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 1:52 pm #

      Skyman Productions! 🙂

  11. Howard Grill August 29, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

    Wow, these are just fantastic! I particularly like the ones where the browns and greens are right next to each other in abstract shapes. Makes for some great contrasts!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

      Thanks Howard.

  12. Peggy W August 29, 2014 at 1:19 pm #

    John, these fields seem to be tended as carefully as a mother might try to comb her child’s hair. Maybe once, if the time of year permits, have an image where in one small spot you see the tractor pulling the racks that make all these carefully drawn lines. The patterns are stunning to see.

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

      Will be out there for the Harvest next year. Hope to get just that Peggy.

  13. Mary M Butler August 29, 2014 at 4:57 pm #

    John, I think you and Dan are going to love being there during harvest – besides combines etc., the colors are entirely different – lights and darks, a little green, kind of high key in spots. I think the colors then are more ‘ethereal’ and other-worldly. Again, fab images here!

    • JB August 30, 2014 at 8:12 am #

      Mary, Dan and I have been during the harvest. This will be our 2nd time.

  14. Janice August 29, 2014 at 6:03 pm #

    John, I’ve been waiting to see these. And they are well worth the wait! I CAN choose a favorite; it’s number one and five and eight and eleven – the gentle-r ones. Your talent is a given, but think how talented those farmers are – to create such beautiful patterns from ground level. What a glorious collaboration!

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

      Thank you Janice. I am drawn to the same images you are. And I totally agree, the farmers are the true artists!

  15. Scott Neumann August 29, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

    Wow what an amazing place. I can see what brings you back there. Amazing photos

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

      Thanks Scott.

  16. Jeff Barclay August 29, 2014 at 9:42 pm #

    My little brother does it once again. Amazingly beautiful images of the eastern part of our state.

    • JB August 29, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

      Thanks Big brother. Nice of you to comment on my blog finally! 🙂

  17. Florence Griffith September 1, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    beautiful…some of these would be great in black and white as well…I know you want the color…but there is a lot of contrast as well

  18. Magdalene September 2, 2014 at 11:42 pm #

    Absolutely Loving these photos!

  19. Steve L September 3, 2014 at 10:43 am #

    Sooo cool.

  20. Sarah Marino September 19, 2014 at 8:37 pm #

    These are great, John! I love the really abstract ones.

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