The Tree of Life

The Tree of Life - Joshua Tree National Park

(please click to view on black // canon 5d mark ii, canon 17-40 f/4 l, 20mm, f/4, iso 5000, 30 sec // buy print)

It’s funny. We were freezing cold at Joshua Tree National Park when the sun went down, but then the stars came out and none of that mattered.

My buddy Heath O’Fee found this tree. Earlier the lot of us had been right under it, shooting upwards at the stars while someone light-painted the rocks. We were all having so much fun taking pictures of things we normally do not. The night sky. It’s fairly new to me and I want to explore it more.

But then we all kind of dispersed to find our own compositions in and around the rocks. And I found this one. I thought the sky would light up nicely on the horizon because of the far off cities and the sun having gone down earlier. The tree growing between the rocks was pure awesome.

The real treat though…was one of my cohorts doing his own light-painting on the far side of that tree. I decided to take advantage and so I waited for him to take another shot and then I took mine.

No idea who it was, but thank you.

  • Matty

    Incredible shot, Mike! Wow!

  • Jesse


  • Heath O’Fee

    You know I love this shot. Nicely done, dude.

  • Brian Furbush

    Holy hell dude, this is absolutely unbelievable. The light painting makes this, as does that ridiculous warm glow on the horizon.

  • Eden

    Stunning shot Mike!

  • jina

    I don’t know all this fancy photog jargon like light painting, but the image is pretty darn awesome. Just saying…

  • Mark Neal

    Beautiful composition Mike. The stark contrast and colors are perfect.

  • Bryan Snider

    Wow! Incredible shot! Did you see the Milky Way that night?

  • Scott Ackerman

    Yeah buddy! Love this shot. Great exposure on the foreground too, and love the separation of the night sky and the trees/rocks.

  • Edith Levy

    Stunning shot Mike.

  • A.Barlow

    wow, one of those shots to be proud of.

  • Chris DeAngelis

    Awesome! Great shot! Funny how quickly you warm up when you are out shooting 🙂

  • Grace

    This is a stunning shot, Mike! Looking forward to seeing more night sky images from you.

  • Rick

    Absolutely killer. Like your stair shot, by tree shot will stay put.

  • Justin

    Mike, that is a thing of beauty. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful moment the universe decided present. Awesome!

  • Jimi Jones

    Wow, man. What an awesome shot! Love the mood of this.

  • Pingback: Reaching for the stars | Phoenix Wedding Photographer | Mike Olbinski Photography()