Artist’s Notes: Through the Storm
I began with an image of the formations off in the distance. This image readily identifies the location as Monument Valley to anyone who has been there, so I wanted it as my main setting.
The rainbow was taken during one of my workshops to Monument Valley. The image is real and does not have any Photoshop “tricks”. The image was captured after a huge sand storm. The wind was blowing the sand so hard we could not get out of the van. We waited it out and the winds subsided and the sand was lifted into the air high above us. The orange color is the result of the lighting at sunset and the passing storm generated a very light shower in the distance, thus creating the rainbow.
I blended the two images by carefully removing the blue sky from the formations. I then toned down the density of the formations to match the ominous sky.
I took this image of the road while standing in the back of our guide’s truck as we drove down the highway. I did not want the straight road, so I used a combination of Skewing and Perspective in the transform options.
This gave the road a diagonal movement as well as making it look like it ran off into the distance. I actually cloned the road to extend it out even farther. I added the shadow where the bike would be.
I then overlaid the “new” road onto the image of the background and the sky. This gave me the basic set design where I could drop in my rider.
I photographed the rider in a parking lot nearby in Arlington at about the same time of day. This was to make sure the lighting on him matched the lighting of the landscape and that it would come from the same direction. He made about 4 circles around the parking lot and I selected this one.
A final blend and several enhancements using Nik Software gave me the overall look and tones. I finally wrote a quote to finish off the story of the image.