Waking up early to photograph this magnificent sandstone Arch, Brett captured Rare Light nearly an hour before sunrise. His camera, stabilized from wind and vibrations by a heavy tripod, spent over five minutes collecting the faint light refracted off our Earth’s atmosphere and falling upon the desert floor. Brett has mastered the difficult task of long-exposure photography and Rare Light is one of his greatest achievements. For years he has wanted to capture the rare purple hues of a desert morning and now he has.
Brett captured Sacred Falls on film in early autumn in the hills of North Carolina. This beautiful waterfall is relatively quiet during the late summer and early fall which gives it a tranquil feeling surrounded by golden leaves and the debris left over from the floods earlier in the springtime. “When I came upon this waterfall I was instantly captivated by it’s setting” recalls Brett. “It was framed on both sides with steep slopes and fallen leaves which gave peace to the chaos of the debris pool below.”
Yellow Leaf Road is a look into the mountain roads of Virginia during the peak of fall color. Utilizing a long exposure soon after sunset, Brett was able to capture the intense colors of this lush vegetation. “I followed a small forest service road for several miles” recalls Brett. “It was a magical place full of colorful trees, waterfalls, valleys and boulders. As the sun was quickly setting behind the mountains in the distance I decided to capture one more image on film for the day. I came upon this cluster of yellow leaved trees with a bend in the road. It was perfect. I setup my tripod and camera, carefully aligned the shot and took about a 45 second exposure. The result is Yellow Leaf Road.”
Hidden Hammock portrays the peaceful solitude of the Gulf of Mexico shoreline. Taken during the summer months on the coast of Florida, Brett traveled to this site a dozen times before finally capturing this final print. “I wanted it to be just right” explains Brett about his quest to capture Hidden Hammock. “The shot was difficult because there were many shadows to contend with and a bright ocean in the background. In order to get my exposure dialed in, I waited until sunset when the shadows were at a minimum and the light was soft. Using a semi-long exposure I was able to pick up the subtle, golden hues in the tree bark and still maintain the ocean in the background.”
Quiet Storm is a breathtaking look into the heart of Mother Nature’s power and grace. The image, captured in springtime along the Gulf of Mexico, is the product of 10 months of hard work filming this rugged coastal shore. “I kept going back to this beach over and over again” recalls Brett reflecting on the challenge of capturing Quiet Storm. “I knew from the moment I found it that it had the potential to be an amazing shot. That night I traveled there during a calm afternoon and for some reason as the sun began to set two storms collided overhead and all hell broke loose!” Brett’s experience on that beach nearly turned disastrous. The secluded beach offered him little coverage to avoid the intense lighting that crashed around him only minutes after capturing Quiet Storm. He took refuge in nearby mangroves for 45 minutes before the storm moved on and he could hike down the coast back to safer ground. “I’ll never forget my experience filming Quiet Storm… it was definitely worth it.”