Jeff Sullivan's TOP Google+ Photos for Jan 26 - Feb 9

published February 10 by  
This PERSONAL TOP contains ten of the most popular photos published publicly
by Jeff Sullivan on Google+ between January 26 and February 9, 2012.

Lake Tahoe Sunrise This Morning
Well, the moon set behinds some clouds before the sunrise color arrived, but it's good that I went up there looking for the moon, because the clouds turned out really well.

Here's what I caught of the moon before it disappeared: #plusphotoextract #WideAngleWednesday curated by +Asif Patel
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published February 8
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Sunrise in Anza Borrego State Park, California
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the largest state park in California, offering over 500 miles of dirt roads to explore. Anza Borrego can have a prolific wildflower bloom, with various species blooming from late February into April.

While the winter of 2010- 2011 brought ample rainfall, it may have been too much: 2011 wasn't a particularly good wildflower season. Hopefully 2012 will be less extreme, and offer better growing conditions.

(Original post:
#plusphotoextract #NatureMonday curator +Rolf Hicker
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published January 30
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Join me for Wildflower Season in the Southern California Desert?
I'm checking for interest in a possible workshop or photowalk in March... offering wildflowers, narrow, winding slot canyons, eroded badlands, cracked earth on a dry lakebed, and more. We'll practice landscape photography, macro photography, and night photography including star trails and light painting.

No commitment necessary yet, I'm just checking for interest so I can get a sense of group size to work out logistics and negotiate rates. I'd propose starting in Anza Borrego for a weekend, but the trip can be easily extended to Joshua Tree National Park and the Salton Sea area (perhaps Imperial Sand Dunes) if some participants want a more comprehensive expedition worth flying in for.

Check out the sample photos in the album below and let me know if you might be interested. If there's sufficient interest, I'll announce details and prices in the next few working days. Hope you can make it!

  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published February 3
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Here's another suggestion for the G+ photographers going to Big Sur this weekend (+Tony Payne have you guys selected a hashtag yet?). This is on Pfeiffer Beach, just to the left of the big rock with the tunnel through it that everyone focuses on. I waited until sunrise was basically over, spotted this cool rock as I was walking out, and I took a number of shots several seconds long. In the foreground of this single 10 second exposure you can see the both the high and low water marks of a large wave surging through, with a misty effect in between. I shot at a focal length of 200mm to compress the front rocks against the brighter one in the background.

All you need to do this is an exposure long enough to span an entire wave, trough to peak. Although the light was fading, I had the aperture closed to f/16 and I added a polarizing filter to lengthen the exposure by two stops.

You can often anticipate the bigger waves by trying to count the number of waves in a "set". The biggest waves often arrive in more or less predictable times, often an odd number of waves from the last one, like 11, 13 or 7. Give it a try!

  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published January 26
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Blue Hour Meets Sunset in Anza Borrego
There's often a short period of time between the blue light of twilight and the warm light of sunset coming over the horizon when you can capture both in one image. I'm pushing things a bit to try to pull it off in this image... even used HDR to try to minimize an otherwise blown highlight where the sun's the brightest.

Most of my last few images uploaded to G+ have been from Anza Borrego... I'm working on photos for that section of my upcoming guide book, as well as working on an itinerary for a visit this Spring.

  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published February 2
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

It looks like some great G+ community members are going to be shooting up California's Big Sur coast this weekend... +Tony Payne +elizabeth hahn +Amy Heiden +John Getchel +Luc Asbury +Michael Bonocore +Matthew Dillon +Brian Bach Sørensen +Mike Ron +Barry Blanchard +Mike Spinak +Leslie Sigala +Lori Hibbett...

There's a lot of great coastline to cover out there. If I might make a suggestion, for sunset consider Weston Cove in Point Lobos State Park. Check the closing hours though. You'll need at least 30 minutes after sunset to catch the best light. I always end up getting chased out by the rangers, who have been very patient with me as run around taking "one more shot".

Wish I could join you guys, but this weekend the ski slopes are calling! #plusphotoextract
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published January 26
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Burning Man Tickets are Far from Sold Out
There are still 14,000 tickets to be released, even before the resale exchange opens up and gets a flood of returns from couples who double-submitted applications for the main sale. If 1/4 of those get resold, that's 24,000 tickets still to come available, roughly half of the total attendance.

In the meantime though, it's frustrating for the people who have to wait in limbo on making plans for 2-3 more weeks.

February 15, 2012 - The application process for low income tickets will be posted at at 12 noon (Pacific Standard Time). 4000 tickets at $160.
February 22, 2012 - Secure Ticket Exchange Program (STEP) launches. STEP will give Burners with extra tickets a safe, no-hassle way to sell their tickets back into the community, and a way for those needing tickets to buy them at face value ($240/$320/$390) without the worry of over-inflated prices, scams or possible counterfeit tickets. There is speculation that many of the 40,000 tickets sold in the first open sale may have gone to couples submitting 2 applications, so many duplicates may get turned back in for resale.
March 28, 2012 - Secondary Open Sale: The link to purchase will be posted to at 12:00pm noon, (Pacific Standard Time). 10,000 tickets at $390.

At first glance, the typical ticket price of $240 - $390 seems like a lot to many people, but where else can you enjoy lodging and entertainment for 8 days at $30-50/day? It's a misnomer though to refer to what happens as entertainment, since it's an inclusive, participatory experience encouraging creativity and radical self-expression. That makes Burning man totally unique. And priceless.

  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published February 2
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Sunrise Moon Set at Anza Borrego
There's the Ocatillo that was in the foreground of my last shot, on the edge of the dropoff. This is a sunrise moon set, which usually occurs the day after the full moon.

I posted this moon set image early for +Stephen Krieg's #MoonriseMonday so you can plan ahead for for an eastward-facing for the February 6 sunset moon rise and for a westward-facing shot for the February 8 sunrise moon set.

I wrote a blog post back in 2006 with more detail on planning moon rise / set shots:
Plan Ahead for Great Full Moon Rise and Set Shots!

(Link to this original post: #plusphotoextract #mountainmonday , curator +Michael Russell
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published January 30
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

“Once more I am roaring drunk with the lust of life and adventure and unbearable beauty... Adventure seems to beset me on all quarters without my even searching for it... Though not all my days are as wild as this, each one holds its surprises, and I have seen almost more beauty than I can bear.” – Everett Reuss
Off The Road Again
California's Anza Borrego State Park is a maze of unpredictable dirt roads, so many spots will remain relatively untrampelled, if not totally secret. I was dying to reach this spot just outside the park for sunset or sunrise, but it took me four tries and routes over the course of two days to actually reach it, even with high clearance and 4WD! The first route was a dirt road named Something-or-other Trail, and that turned into a increasingly decaying dirt bike trail that I decided to bail out from and drive back out of. The second route I tried turned into those deep, close bumps which trail bikes make, and after a mile or two of those, again I gave up that particular approach. The third option looked really promising, involving driving miles up a primitive road placed in a dry riverbed. Surely that was the most major access road, if not the closest. What could go wrong? After driving tens of miles to reach that downhill end of the drainage, I arrived to find deep mud. It would be days or weeks before it would dry out enough to be passable. So now more than a day after I had started, I looked on the maze of roads on the map and plotted a complicated course through higher, drier ground, without using any of the trails I had already eliminated. It was interesting in deep gravel, sand and winding through mud hills, but I made it with only one minor ding on a rock that was apparently just a little higher than my SUV's 8" clearance. This site isn't pristine. There were dozens of folks there on trail bikes and ATVs, but they left to head back to their camps just as a few clouds on the horizon caught a bit of sunset light, their fire-breathing machines making buzzing noises like a swarm of giant killer bees. There's a fence around the site which shows up in most compositions; some people choose to edit it out.

I just can't wait to get off the road again
The life I love is making pictures with my friends
And I can't wait to get off the road again
(Paraphrasing, but not actually quoting, Willie Nelson)
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published January 31
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

Textures: Earth and Sky
In an area of relatively barren mud hills, what you often have to work with are leading lines and textures. It would be great to find a plant to feature as a subject, but the dry, rain-compacted soil is not conducive to plant growth. This is another image from the Anza Borrego series I'm working on.

Shot at f/16, ISO 200, 1/15 second shutter speed, with a 24mm focal length, using a graduated neutral density filter to bring the sky and foreground exposures closer together.
  • Photographer Jeff Sullivan
  • Published February 2
  • Copyright © All rights reserved

How do the PERSONAL TOPs of G+ Photos Work?

1) Any photography enthusiast can create a PERSONAL TOP consisting of his/her own Google Plus photographs. This means any existing PERSONAL top has been created by the author of the photographs that are in the TOP; there are no PERSONAL TOPs that were created automatically.

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3) Contrary to the DAILY TOPs are the PERSONAL TOPs sorted solely on popularity - we use Plus PopRank to sort these. The Plus PopRank formula is: Plus PopRank(of a post) = +1s + (2 x comments) + (4 x reshares)

Example: Let's say that a particular post has 25 +1s, 10 comments and 3 reshares. This means its Plus PopRank is 57 (= 25 + 2x10 + 4*3).

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