Our photo, Sunflower Graced Mountain Road, has been named as a Judges' Favorite in the AAA Highroads Arizona Wild Flowers photography contest.
One of my colleagues and a fellow photographer was kind enough to tell me about this scenic area just North of Wupakti Look Road, near Flagstaff, Arizona. This road leads to Sunset Crater Volcanic National Monument, a unique geological wonderland of volcanic cinder fields. We were delighted to hike this scenic hillside in the aftermath of heavy monsoon rains, which support vibrant plant life in Northern Arizona mountains.
Our visit to this site is memorable, not only due to the abundant Sunflowers, but also given the extremely windy conditions on that day. During most of our hike, it was not possible to photograph detailed landscape scene having an extended depth of field, at least not without moving to unacceptably high ISO camera settings, e.g., 1,600 and above.
After fighting the wind and these technical limitations for some time, I decided to photography a series of time exposures depicting the raw energy of sunflowers in motion. For more information on the time exposures and wildlife photography, see Photography on a Windy Hillside.
My sincere thanks to the contest judges at AAA Highroads for their recognition of my wild flower photography.
Landscape photography techniques, photo expedition travel planning and hiking tips.