At Tom Bol Photo Workshops, we celebrate great participant images by selecting a Photo of the Month. For July we chose an image taken on the Redwoods and Rocky Coastlines Workshop created by Scott Harrison. Scott worked as a digital imaging specialist for the LA Times for 33 years. His journalistic approach to photography comes out in the breadth of images he created on the workshop. You can see more of his images at www.harrysonpics.com
Congratulations to July 2023 ‘s featured photographer – Scott Harrison
On the second session on the evening walk I wanted to get a scene setter. I hoped to capture the overall picture. We started up the trail and met with the fog. I started using my 16 mm lens and shot about 20 versions of this scene.
I was trying to use the trail as a leading line. In half of the photos I included a person to give scale to the forest. Almost all of the people were members of our group.
My style – I always use 2 camera bodies. This time I had a 24-200 mm on one. My second lens is always special, in this case a 16 mm. Sometimes I use a LensBaby, sometimes an old manual focus lens.
I like to mix in a variety of focal lengths to tell a story. This keeps the images fresh and not repetitious. By adding a specialty lens I also get creative effects.
Camera: Canon EOS RP
Lens: 16 mm
Shutter Speed: 1/60 sec
Shooting Mode: Shutter Priority
Exposure Comp -.03
About Photographing in the Redwoods
I love it!
I’m not a landscape photographer per se, but I like to walk around and photograph things. It is a different world in the Redwoods. I loved the quiet and peacefulness. That is why I was often by myself on the workshop.
I was happy to be in the fog. In Southern California I deal with high contrast lighting all the time. In the fog the lighting is flat and I had the ability to capture more detail. The colors are also saturated. I found the colors were so bright that I had to desaturate them in PhotoShop.
Scott’s Tips for Photographing on a Workshop
Because of my background, I hate shooting the same photo that everyone takes. I stay away from the Grand Canyon and the parks in Utah. If I am there, then I take photos of the crowds in the foreground taking photos in scenic spots.
About 15 years ago I started taking road trips by myself. To plan my trips I used iphone apps like Roadside America. I also use Fotospot and Atlas Obscura. These apps give me information on all the unusual places in the country. I try to find things that other people do not photograph.
From my training with newspapers, we used to travel to a new town and go right to the local drugstore and look at the postcard rack. Find things outside of the mainstream, including in your own home town.
Join the local camera club and do photo walks. Going as a group can really help.
Listen to what the leaders are saying. I took the fern photo because Cree mentioned dialing back the exposure compensation to create a moody shot. I underexposed by 2 stops for that one. I also created a whole series from the Simpson-Reed Grove in black and white.
On Scott’s Horizon:
Route 66 in Oklahoma
Tucson and Saguaro National Park
South Dakota Badlands
New Zealand and Australia
Want to join us in 2025: Redwoods and Rocky Coastlines July 9-13, 2025 Space Available!
Online Image Celebration: Join us on August 10 at 5 pm Denver time to see more of the work created on our workshops in the last 4 months. This is a great way to celebrate new work. Sometimes people need more time to edit their images. If you were on a workshop you are invited to send in 3 images to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to join us, send a quick message here and we will send the link.
Tom and Cree are headed to Ecuador next for Ecuador Cloud Forest Workshop. In August they will be out of the office on a wilderness canoe trip in Canyonlands, Utah and then on a scouting trip in remote arctic Alaska.
Enjoy the end of summer!
Tom and Cree