In honor of Presidents Day today, I am posting photos of some United States Presidents that I have. I took a driving trip out west in early June of 2009 and spent a few days in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The biggest problems that I had on this trip was trying to cram in as many site seeing excursions as possible in a short amount of time, and dealing with cloudy rainy weather the entire 10 days of the trip. On the day I visted Mt. Rushmore with my wife and another couple traveling with us, the weather was constantly changing from blue skies and white fluffy clouds, to stormy clouds and rain. We were visiting several attractions that day and I knew I would not have much time to take photographs. Knowing this national monument has been photographed millions of times, my only goal was to get some good quality shots for myself. The top left photo was taken from a pullout area on the highway to Mt. Rushmore. I like this perspective because it gives such a nice sense of scale , and you are at eve level with the presidents. Shot with my Canon 50D and a 70-200 f2.8L IS at 170mm. The storm clouds were brewing and when we got there it was raining. In about 30 minutes it started clearing off and I was able to get some nice photos. The photo on the top right was one I converted to B&W in Photoshop. Shot with a Canon 50D and a 17-40mm F4 L at 34mm. Although the color photo looks great, I am really happy with this B&W conversion.
If you click on the photos you will see a larger version open to see them in much better detail.
The skies were quickly clearing, and I used my 70-200 to zoom in for a tighter composition on the landscape shot here. As a photographer you really want to have time to explore and try to find new and interesting angles and compositions to photograph at such a inspirational location. I was lucky to catch some good light considering the changing weather, but not enough time to really do much but take the standard tourist photos. You can learn much more about this great place by visiting the National Parks website on this location at this website. http://www.nps.gov/moru/historyculture/index.htm
Looming not far from Mt. Rushmore is a project that may eventually overshadow it somewhat. If not in stature, in sheer size. The Crazy Horse Memorial. Another amazing place that I visited but did not spend nearly enough time at. Probably will not be finished in my life time, but when it's done, it will be just awe inspiring. Here is the link to their webite to see and learn more about this amazing place. A possible future post topic.