Tag Archives: north america

Merced River, Branches, El Capitan

Merced River Reflections
Merced River Reflections

Merced River Reflections. Yosemite Valley, California. November 30, 2005. © Copyright 2005 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Branches in the still water of the Merced River with floating autumn leaves and the reflection of El Capitan, Yosemite Valley.

This photograph is almost a bit of an optical trick. I’ll let you look for a second and figure it out…

… Does it make sense now? The foreground is composed of some intertwining dead branches just above the surface of a very still section of the quiet, late autumn Merced River in Yosemite Valley. The leaves floating on and just beneath the surface of the water give it away. Because there are so many branches, their dark reflections seem, to me at least, to almost merge with the shapes of the actual branches, creating a complex pattern. And, reflected in the surface of the water and appearing as a backdrop to these elements, is the sunlit face of El Capitan.

I would love to tell a great story about making this photograph… but I don’t remember making it! I discovered it only recently while reviewing all of my old raw files, and all I can say for sure is that I made it on one of my annual late October trips to The Valley to photograph the fall colors. For those who follow the technical stuff, I made this photograph with some pretty low-level gear back at a time when I was experimenting with my first DSLR. The camera was the very humble (but better than some think, at least for this sort of thing!) Canon Digital Rebel XT, an early 8 MP body. Even more humble was the lens, the not so swell EFS 17-85mm Canon lens.

(Note: This was originally posted on September 21, 2011. I’m moving this photograph back up on the home page today as this is a new revision of the original photograph — the date of the revision is December 26, 2014)


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Parking Structure

Parking Structure
Parking Structure

Parking Structure. New York City. August 14, 2010. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Parking structure and urban scene near the Highline Park in New York City

When in New York City… visit the Highline Park, as we did on this 2010 summer visit. For those who may not know, the Highline Park is a novel New York location, a park high above the streets that occupies the right of way of an old elevated railway. It is widely regarded as one of the most innovative public spaces in this city, and it really is a remarkable place.

It is also a great place to do photography. There are plenty of people subjects there, and there is all of the other stuff that is worth shooting in New York, plus the elevated perspective provides a lot of views that are different from those seen from street level. We’ve all seen this urban parking structures, which stack cars up several deep in order to make more efficient use of limited space. But we don’t often see them from above, where the metal framing suggests planes that aren’t visible from below but which connect in interesting ways with the angled lines and planes of the other nearby buildings.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

The Lake, Central Park

The Lake, Central Park
The Lake, Central Park

The Lake, Central Park. Manhattan, New York. August 14, 2010. © Copyright 2010 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Summer boaters on The Lake, Central Park, Manhattan

After watching a friend take on the task of posting a continuous string of black and white photographs during the holiday season this year, I have posted more monochrome photographs than usual, with a number of them coming from a backlog of older work that sits in the raw file archives. This has provided a bit of a necessary nudge to go back and revisit some of those older photographs. I haven’t taken a very systematic approach to this nostalgic review of the older work, instead almost randomly dropping in on the files from different years and subjects. A recent look at some older Sierra Nevada photographs took me back to 2010, and it wasn’t a long trip from there to a collection of photographs from a summer 2010 visit to New York City.

I think that 2010 was the first time I visited New York City in August. New Yorkers are perhaps rolling their eyes, knowing all about August weather there, but I was innocent. Now I know. (And, strange as it seems, I actually chose to go back this past August! I’m starting to get used to it and to perhaps even embrace the heat and humidity.) The Central Park location of this photograph is probably fairly obvious — we wandered through portions of the park and ended up near The Lake, where park visitors rowed slowly and serenely within sight of Manhattan’s urban buildings.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Telescope Peak

Telescope Peak
Telescope Peak

Telescope Peak. Death Valley National Park, California. April 1, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Telescope Peak, the highest point in Death Valley National Park, in the distance beyond the rugged terrain of upper Titanothere Canyon in the Amargosa Range

This one has been sitting in my queue for months now, and it is finally time to send it out with the other photographs! I made the photograph back in early April, while spending a few days in Death Valley exploring a lot of higher elevation area in the mountains on either side of the Valley itself. At one point during this visit, we ended up spending nearly an entire day high up in the Panamint range, at times doing something very unusual — photographing Death Valley wildflowers during a snowstorm!

The distant snow-covered peak in the photograph is Telescope Peak, at over 11,000′ of elevation the highest point in the Panamint range and in Death Valley National Park. While we often think of Death Valley’s reputation for heat, this peak is often covered with snow during the colder times of the year. The location from which I made this photograph is high in the mountains on the other, east side of the Valley, a very arid and rugged region that presents a different appearance than the much lower areas of the Valley itself. Here there is a landscape of dry and rugged mountains and valleys, often receding one behind the other into the distance. I stopped at this spot, where I have photographed before, and was captivated by the conduction of three peak shapes — the nearly peak at upper right, the distant summit of Telegraph Peak, and the peak-like form of the clouds above.

G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.