Sunsets and Strikes

Downtown Phoenix Monsoon Sunset

(click on the images to view in lightbox)

This season of stormchasing has been amazing so far. July is now in the books and yet the stuff I’ve seen already this summer has been just awesome. A lot of that has to do with just BEING out there more than last year, but I feel like there have just been some epic scenes that I’ve been lucky to witness. For example, last night I had planned to stay in town and just shoot lightning if it moved into Phoenix in the evening. Our daughter has been sick and Sunday was pretty rough. Not a lot of sleep for anyone in our little house. So when she finally went to sleep and I saw this massive storm approaching town, I was happy that I was in town and not out chasing in the deserts. Beauty exists everywhere, even in the middle of a giant mess of buildings and asphalt. I visited a new parking garage last night, a taller one with very friendly security guards who were more concerned that I get good shots than caring if I was up there at all! Almost a 360 view of Phoenix from the top, so I’ll probably check it out a few more times. I shot a timelapse of this sunset and will be processing it sometime soon. You’ve got some simply stunning colors, mammatus clouds, and a dust storm on the left horizon. I’m including a bonus lightning shot from last night because I’ve captured so much lightning already this year, there is no way I’ll be able to post them all this summer. Also, you’ll notice it’s in B&W and I plan on writing about that sometime this week. (top image: canon 5d mark ii, tamron 17-35mm 2.8, 17mm, f/8, iso 100, 1.6sec. bottom: canon 85mm 1.8, f/8.0. iso 200, 20 sec)

18 replies
  1. Brian Furbush
    Brian Furbush says:

    Both shots are absolutely sick man, very cool that the security guards are so chill as well. I really dig the B&W conversion, looking forward to the write-up.

  2. A.Barlow
    A.Barlow says:

    Really like both shots. As much as I love your lightning work, I have to give it to shot #1. Those clouds are just to awesome. Maybe it’s the blending of the colors, idk. It just works.

  3. jina
    jina says:

    In the first shot, I really like the juxtaposition of the ethereal nature of the sky against the man-made structure of the city.

  4. Scott Wood
    Scott Wood says:

    Wow, those are both stunning images. I love the black and white for the lightning. I have tried it a few times and never been happy with the results. I look forward to your write up

  5. Larry
    Larry says:

    Mike, these are seriously awesome shots. I really want to get out to shoot with you soon. Hopefully this week will allow for that. I went out last night and got some decent shots, but they dwarf in comparison. 🙂

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