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20 Year Monsoon

  
 
Mark Metternich
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · 20 Year Monsoon


Congratulations to Mark Metternich for winning Feature Thread of the Week with 12 votes - View Previous Winners


I have been on the road for a month, in the great SW. The monsoon season thunderstorms have been on a downward trend for some years now, but this year has made up for a decade easily! Some are calling it the 20 year monsoon season!

This is a single, handheld shot I very quickly took, only to demonstrate some potential compositions to some of my clients who were struggling with composing using an ultra wide.

Only 2 hours before this everyone was chased off the sandstone with an crazy armageddon-like torrential downpour, high winds, hail pelting us, and a sand blast mixed into the sideways rain with lighting literally striking right in front of us all over the place.
After about an hour sheltered in our vehicles, the storm started clearing and everyone ran back out and were treated to the biggest pools and best conditions I have seen in maybe 100 trips. I never tire of sharing the beauty with great adventurous folks! 😁

I hope everyone is doing great, and having a great summer/fall.

Gear:
Sony A7R2
Canon [email protected]
1/800th
100 ISO
f/11

Processing:
This was easy as cake to process using true lossless Raw Layers (Lightroom/Camera Raw to Photoshop). I teach this gold standard of quality processing to everyone on my workshops and people are always amazed at the new, much higher level of quality and easy flexibility they are able to achieve. The bottom line is that "adjustment layers" are NOT lossless (when the image gets flattened/rasterized, all those adjustments are lossy/degrading/damaging) and "smart object layers" are NOT lossless (same thing, when the image gets flattened/rasterized, all those adjustments are lossy/degrading/damaging) but a RAW LAYER workflow in Lightroom/Camera Raw/Photoshop is true and pure lossless editing, on the cutting edge of technology and quality and makes a real world difference. 🤓









Sep 09, 2022 at 10:57 AM
junglialoh
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · 20 Year Monsoon


Gorgeous aesthetic and artistic work of fine photography


Sep 09, 2022 at 11:12 AM
dakel
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · 20 Year Monsoon


Fantastic shot Mark. Beautifully processed. The detail in the rock is fascinating and I love the symmetry you have portrayed - lends itself to the calm after the storm feeling you must have been feeling.


Sep 09, 2022 at 02:00 PM
psharvic
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · 20 Year Monsoon


Excellent. Love the balance and detail.


Sep 09, 2022 at 02:43 PM
Rajan Parrikar
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · 20 Year Monsoon


Top notch. Bravo!


Sep 09, 2022 at 02:43 PM
Bill Gass
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · 20 Year Monsoon


Beautiful and the extra info is nice as well.
I voted for you.



Sep 09, 2022 at 04:33 PM
Dave Good
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · 20 Year Monsoon


This is a another beauty Mark, your processing definitely adds some special sauce to the image!





Sep 09, 2022 at 05:26 PM
Karl Witt
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · 20 Year Monsoon


This is just one image not a stack? I must say this one boggles the mind with detail Mark. That detail in the tree is mind blowing but then again the whole image gave me a rush, it has me in awe

Karl



Sep 09, 2022 at 09:08 PM
DanielScott
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · 20 Year Monsoon


What an absolutely beautiful photo. Just breathtaking!


Sep 10, 2022 at 01:10 AM
douter
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · 20 Year Monsoon


I just really Like and enjoy perusing this photo! Excellent eye Mark!
Douglas



Sep 10, 2022 at 05:57 AM
 


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scott bye
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · 20 Year Monsoon


Why are you still using the A7RII and not the IV?


Sep 10, 2022 at 07:37 AM
James Markus
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · 20 Year Monsoon


Very dramatic image, and composition - congrats.
Jim



Sep 11, 2022 at 03:59 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · 20 Year Monsoon


Beautiful Mark!


Sep 11, 2022 at 04:24 PM
Jim Dockery
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · 20 Year Monsoon


Thanks for the backstory and large gorgeous photo to enjoy. Beautiful.


Sep 11, 2022 at 04:41 PM
Brad Williams
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · 20 Year Monsoon


Great work as always Mark!


Sep 12, 2022 at 10:36 AM
Mark Metternich
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · 20 Year Monsoon


Thank you everyone so much! Conditions, conditions…
Sorry if I am very hit and miss right now, I have about 2 more months on the road, most of which is preoccupied with leading people, and also a lot of out of coverage locations… I will reply! Sometimes it just takes me some time to get back home…


junglialoh wrote:
Gorgeous aesthetic and artistic work of fine photography


Huge thank you man. This one is really about conditions. I could have worked this scene to death with about 25 other variations, but I was teaching my workshop clients, and just did this one quickly for someone struggling with seeing the potential of ultra wide angle shooting… We chased the MEGA storm into the area and this is the break after the storm.



dakel wrote:
Fantastic shot Mark. Beautifully processed. The detail in the rock is fascinating and I love the symmetry you have portrayed - lends itself to the calm after the storm feeling you must have been feeling.


Thank you for your thoughtful comment. Yes. Very good point, calm after the storm. Maybe a title?



psharvic wrote:
Excellent. Love the balance and detail.


I really appreciate it!


Rajan Parrikar wrote:
Top notch. Bravo!


Huge thank you Rajan! All the best.

Bill Gass wrote:
Beautiful and the extra info is nice as well.
I voted for you.


Yay! And a huge thank you! I like to share the extra info for those who appreciate it. I get private messages about this all the time.


Dave Good wrote:
This is another beauty Mark, your processing definitely adds some special sauce to the image!


Thank you Dave! This one was pretty dang easy. Just lots of fine tuning small corrections. Probably one of the easiest images I have processed in some time. The conditions were outrageous! But I agree, without the nitpicky corrections this would not have been as good. I can spend hours on an image just nitpicking the smallest stuff that many might not see, or overlook.


Karl Witt wrote:
This is just one image not a stack? I must say this one boggles the mind with detail Mark. That detail in the tree is mind blowing but then again the whole image gave me a rush, it has me in awe

Karl


. Yes! A single shot, no stack. That 11-24 has quite the depth of field at 11mm!!! It is a pretty sharp lens too. BUT, having said that, anyone who has done my workshops or knows me as a photographer, knows I do NOTHING the quick, easy or “auto” way. Sharpening included! Without advanced careful manual sharpening, this would not look as good. I would say that for any image. I literally have about 10 custom sharpening techniques (for web) that I use, all manual. When it comes to print, I have about 50, and about 15 or so are total proprietary industry game changers. I may be the geekiest sharpening person you have ever heard of… Except, Robert Park of Nevada Art Printers of course. I test, pioneer and innovate sharpening over 300 days a year. THAT is geeky!



DanielScott wrote:
What an absolutely beautiful photo. Just breathtaking!


Thank you so very much!

douter wrote:
I just really Like and enjoy perusing this photo! Excellent eye Mark!
Douglas


Thank you very much Douglas! All the best to you and your family.


scott bye wrote:
Why are you still using the A7RII and not the IV?


Great question!

I have tested and continue to test the A7R2 and the A7R3 against the A7R4 and with the A7R2 I can match anything the A7R4 can do. I could put some examples up some time. The A7R3 on the other hand [bn]beats the A7R4 quite easily.

In a short word (and I know quite controversial for many) the Sony A7R4 over shot megapixels.

I do nothing but (my full time job for over a decade) produce the highest quality world class, largest prints for top end galleries (under very strict confidentiality agreements) 8-16 hrs a day, 6 days a week, when I am not on the road leading workshops. This affords me the incredible luxury of pushing the bleeding edge of quality (and technology) in enlargements all day every day. So, I also get the privilege of working on every conceivable file and camera type out there, even the best of Hassy/Phase LF film and so much more. Out of literally hundreds, from various clients, I have not seen a single A7R4 file that has impressed me. Sorry. In fact, some of my clients sell their A7R4’s after I show them all the tests. Many have gone back to the A7R3. If I had the 4, I would sell it for the 3. But…

When I bought 2 A7R2’s, is when the 3 came out and I did not know yet how dang good the 3 was, so I was a bit lazy and I stuck with the 2.

BUT, I actually now have my favorite camera in the world for resolution and potential quality print enlargement, the Panasonic Lumix S1R. The prints we have been able to make off this camera coupled with phenomenal glass (like top Leica, Zeiss or Sigma Art) and superior pixel shifting (187MP mode) has been insane! Even beating the highest MP Hassy and Phase. Although, I am still massively impressed with Phase or Hassy in the 60 - 80MP range, shot through a technical camera, with top Schneider or Rodenstock glass and stitched. Like some of Rodney Lough Jr’s work.

So many have opinions on all this stuff, but very, very few are pushing all these camera systems and files to the bleeding edge of what is possible for top quality enlargement. This is where even the most micro of things most cannot even see (especially on their 4k or 5k monitors) matter massively. Print guru Robert B Park (Nevada Art Printers) and I teach and show all this stuff every year in our “The Ultimate Mastering Fine Art Printmaking Workshop” in Las Vegas.

So, I should have been using the Sony A7R3 until the Panasonic Lumix S1R came out.

To be clear though, that is NOT to say that great prints can not be made from all kinds of camera systems! I have to make them from all kinds of systems… In fact I have to get back to work right now on some!!!


James Markus wrote:
Very dramatic image, and composition - congrats.
Jim


Thank you very much Jim!! All the best!

Fred Miranda wrote:
Beautiful Mark!


Thank you very much Fred. I hope you and your family are doing well.


Jim Dockery wrote:
Thanks for the backstory and large gorgeous photo to enjoy. Beautiful.


Totally my pleasure. I love to share it for those who appreciate it.


Brad Williams wrote:
Great work as always Mark!


Huge thank you Brad! Blessings to you and your family.





Sep 12, 2022 at 12:55 PM
dbehrens
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · 20 Year Monsoon


When I first saw this I was thinking focus stacked. Wow - for a single handheld shot! Its the best "snap" I've seen of this comp. I was there a month back and also saw more reflection pools than any other time. . . but not with running water. . . and now I'm too busy to go back up there! Grrr!


Sep 12, 2022 at 01:45 PM
Jeffrey
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · 20 Year Monsoon


Lovely image, Mark!


Sep 12, 2022 at 02:08 PM
keepclicking
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · 20 Year Monsoon


Mark, always enjoy viewing and learning from your images. What I love is your passion to creating that special image. Thanks for sharing.


Sep 12, 2022 at 06:08 PM
Sunkmanitu
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · 20 Year Monsoon


Fantastic shot!


Sep 13, 2022 at 08:12 AM
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