"This is going to be so cool!"
Somewhere in the dark I muttered this phrase to my good friend Chase, who was about to drive his Ford Escape along a dirt road at 2am in the middle of the Colorado mountains. About 30 minutes before I told him this, I had an idea for a photo.
Every year, Chase and I load up for a long weekend in the mountains to do landscape photography of the beautiful fall colors Colorado has been known for. On a trip a couple of years ago, we ventured to Crested Butte and found beautiful pockets of deep golds, oranges and reds. We had an idea for a nighttime shoot to try to do some astrophotography and while we were out there, we met up with our good friend Rick Louie. We went out to the Ohio Pass road and in the thick of the aspens, I had a spark of inspiration. The beautiful deep blue night sky above was great but it was far too dark in the trees to get any leaf color, and before Chase could object, I told him to drive the Escape along the road slowly to illuminate everything underneath the canopy.
Rick and I composed our shots and I radioed him to go ahead and drive the road while I was pointing my Canon 5D Mk. III with a 14mm f/2.8L lens toward the sky, hoping that my hunch would pay off. We took several exposures and once I had a chance to review the photos, I knew we had hit the gold mine. I radioed to Chase to drive the road a couple more times, composed a vertical orientation and pressed the shutter. Sometimes, when inspiration strikes at 2am you have to just roll with it and surround yourself with really creative friends.