Niwot Alpenglow

Niwot Ridge, Indian Peaks, Colorado

Here’s another one “from the vault”. This was taken back in November 2005 when Scott Bacon and I went for a pre-dawn hike up to Niwot Ridge in Indian Peaks above Boulder, Colorado. It was only the second time I had shot my 4×5 field camera, and the first decent photo I ever made with it. I was shooting with a 90mm Nikkor lens that Richie Voninski was kind enough to lend me.

I remember back then when I was just starting out with large format, I had all the pieces of my gear wrapped in socks and stuffed in different little bags throughout my backpack, and keeping track of it all was quite a challenge with numb fingers up on this cold windy ridge, trying to get it together before the sunrise alpenglow light faded away. In fact as I figured out soon enough, one of the biggest boosts for my large format photography performance was to get a camera case that could fit and organize all the different gear into one convenient and quickly accessible case.

Anyhow, when I got the film back from that morning, I was also introduced to one of the joys of 4×5 film, when most of my transparencies had big light-leak streaks going through the frame. (A warped Kodak Readyload holder was to blame). This was one of the ok shots, but you can still see faint traces of the light leakage at the bottom. So that was a good lesson to try to never let direct sunlight hit the camera while film is exposed.

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