All We Are
the squall of a dust storm at Burning Man

Image 332 of 348
Comments 9
Views 1168
Media ID 2011032221385599 
Tue Jul 31, '07 09:13PM
Uploaded By: Patrick Flynn  


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Media ID 2011032221385599  
Date Tue Jul 31, '07 09:13PM
Comments 9
Views 1168
Uploaded By Patrick Flynn
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I sincerely hope that I am not blowing anyone's mind by pointing out our "dust in the wind" situation here.

I think it's pretty cool! Sorta reminds me of that final scene from "Close Encounters". Smile


This is actually pretty cool!  It's another one that I have come back to a few times... the first time I wasn't so sure about it... the second time it started to grow on me... and by the third viewing I was hooked ;-)  It has an otherworldly kind of feel to it that is utterly infectious.  



This is a very eerie, other-worldly scene out of some weird sci-fi adventure.  I think it's amazing!

If thought were ever to be evoked from images, this one does that.  It stirs many thoughts in me that is both apocalyptic and this where the world is heading as a whole?  Great positioning of the subjects, grain and sepia are also highly effective.  One of the best images I have seen lately. 

The effect is great and I like the image as it is, but would prefer a little less (added) grain (or finer grain), because I liked the thumbnail better and then was slightly disappointed seeing the large image.


 I have to agree with Ian here. I had almost the exact same response. The thumbnail had me all excited and when I looked at the full-size image I was a tad disappointed. The image seems a bit overprocessed. I think if could've been treated more in a photojournalistic style and less artsy, it would mean more and convey more. But again, you showed good eye for the "moment". I would love to hear the back story on this image.

All - thank you very much for the feedback. I shot this image at Burning Man within a fierce dust storm, upon the alkaline playa of the Black Rock Desert in Nevada. The ground there is so hard-packed and chalky that dust swirls up under every step, and a simple breeze can gust into a vast wall of dust that envelops all fifty thousand participants.

It really isn't difficult to capture a shot like this at Burning Man. The towering backdrop of the wooden statue which is destined to burn down a few days later, creates a convenient compositional element that almost makes this kind of capture all too easy.

For this shot I basically just set up my tripod on the playa in mid-afternoon and waited for the next dust storm to hit. I was only there about 40 minutes when I caught this shot, and the image immediately looked like the exact success I was seeking. So I instantly broke down the tripod and went to happy hour.

However, on my monitor back home this RAW file seemed awfully monochromatic and flat, utterly lacking of the drama that I had witnessed in the moment. I was immediately affronted by how pedestrian my triumphant capture now seemed.

So this editing effort is probably my overzealous attempt to imbue the magic back into the capture. After the standard contrast and sharpening, I added the sepia cast, the grainy film effect (for a sense of the stinging duststorm), and the vignetting.

Then I walked away for a week or so, and I found when I came back to this image that I caught some of the emotion I had felt when I first pressed the shutter button. And that is what I called a success.

Today, this image is my single most obviously processed photograph - and hopefully the only one which is obviously overdone. I do regret the disappointment some have felt in opening this up larger from the thumbnail, and I will probably consider different renditions of this photo in the future. That kind of feedback is exactly why I put this up here.

But honestly, all of you can easily go improve on this yourselves next September! This place is freaky as all get out, but it's an absolute paradise for exotic photography. Definitely check it out at least once in your life.


Edited on Sunday, March 27 2011 @ 12:31 AM EDT by Patrick Flynn

I love Impressionist paintings because they are freed to detail. Sand dust spots reminds me of pointillist paintings. Your photo is beautiful: it looks like a shadow theater. The giant at the bottom is surreal. A pretty oriental tale.

I saw the vignette, do you add this by photoshop or lightroom ? I think you can erase the vignette. 

Edited on Saturday, July 14 2012 @ 07:53 PM EDT by