2015
02.20

Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View, Yosemite National Park, California USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View, Yosemite National Park, California

Today is Ansel Adams’ 113th birthday. The master of landscape photography had a profound affect on my creative direction and continues to be an inspiration to generations of outdoor photographers.

Adams pioneered the idea of previsualization, the concept of seeing the final image in the mind’s eye before the photo is created. He also co-founded Group f/64 with other photographic masters Edward Weston and Imogen Cunningham, and he developed the Zone System, a technique for translating perceived light into specific densities to allow better control over finished photographs.

As a strong advocate for the environment, his iconic black and white images of the American West influenced powerful decision makers in Washington and helped preserve places like Yosemite and California’s iconic Big Sur coast. Ansel was also largely responsible for photography being accepted into the world of fine art, culminating in major exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, in 1980. And shortly after his death in 1984, the Minarets Wilderness in his beloved Sierra Nevada Mountains was re-named the Ansel Adams Wilderness in his honor.

Thank you Ansel – your legacy lives on!

“Photography is more than a medium for factual communication of ideas. It is a creative art.”   Ansel Adams

2015
01.29

Evening light on Square Tower House Ruins, Mesa Verde National Park (World Heritage Site), Colorado (Russ Bishop/Russ Bishop Photography)

Evening light on Square Tower House, Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado

The cliff dwellings of the American southwest are the most spectacular ruins north of Mexico. The Anasazi Indians (or “ancient ones” as the modern Navajo call them) were the prehistoric pueblo culture that thrived in the Four Corners region of the United States between 900 and 1200 A.D. before their mysterious disappearance.

Many of their elaborate structures are well-preserved in national parks such as Mesa Verde in southwestern Colorado, Chaco Canyon in New Mexico, and Canyon de Chelly in Arizona. From three story citadels perched precariously on canyon ledges like Square Tower House shown here, to the 500 room Great Houses of Chaco Canyon, these skilled masons left a legacy to rival the ruins of ancient Greece.

Archaeologists and scholars still debate what caused their sudden demise toward the end of the 12th century, but the stone handiwork of the Anasazi remains a fascinating testament to the vision and tenacity of these ancient pueblo people.

2014
12.23

As another year comes to a close, it’s time to look back on the visual highlights that defined 2014.

Thanks once again to Jim Goldstein for publishing his annual compilation of some of the most amazing photography around. It’s an honor to be included, and I am grateful to all of you who have commented, shared, and supported my work during the past year.

In celebration of a wonderful 2014 and looking ahead to more exciting adventures in 2015, here are a few of my favorite images.

(Click image for larger view)

Sunset over the Channel Islands from Ventura State Beach, Ventura, California USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Sunset over the Channel Islands from Ventura State Beach, Ventura, California

 

Cloud forest, Glacier National Park, Montana USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Cloud forest, Glacier National Park, Montana

 

St. Mary Falls, Glacier National Park, Montana USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

St. Mary Falls, Glacier National Park, Montana

 

Sagebrush in the Alabama Hills under the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Owen's Valley, California USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Sagebrush in the Alabama Hills under the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Owen’s Valley, California

 

Moonbow and starry sky over Yosemite Falls, Yosemite National Park, California USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Moonbow over Yosemite Falls, Yosemite National Park, California

 

Sunrise over the Grand Canyon from Mather Point, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Sunrise over the Grand Canyon from Mather Point, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

 

Evening light on the Cockscomb, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

The Cockscomb, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

 

Triple Falls, Glacier National Park, Montana USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Triple Falls, Glacier National Park, Montana

 

Lava steam vent glowing at night in the Halemaumau Crater, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Lava steam vent in the Halemaumau Crater, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

 

Rainbow Falls, Wailuku River State Park, Hilo, The Big Island, Hawaii USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Rainbow Falls, Wailuku River State Park, Hilo, The Big Island, Hawaii

 

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Paria-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

The Wave, Coyote Buttes, Paria-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona

 

Last light on Bridalveil Fall, Yosemite National Park, California USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)

Last light on Bridalveil Fall, Yosemite National Park, California