Monday, January 25, 2010

Shooting An Earth Science Textbook Cover in Florida?

5:00 A.M. alarm clock wakens us to a 65 mile drive south through several rain downpours in the predawn darkness.  Thirty minutes before sunrise we arrive at our destination: the bare, weather eroded limestone that is the remnant of a fossilized coral reef.  Low tide is on our side, the 20 knot wind is not.  We get to work cautiously scouting locations on the slick rock among the tide pools. A wonderful red mangrove will make a fantastic backdrop, but we realize that HDR isn't possible in this wind.  We photograph it anyway, knowing we can utilize some digital post processing magic to make the image work. Thirty minutes later, it's over and we've captured nearly 1 GB of camera RAW images. Black coffee tastes really good!

The impetus for this photo journey?  For their Florida Adoption a textbook publisher needs a Florida location with obvious Geology for an Earth Science textbook.  This photo need has plagued them for weeks.  Florida is not a state known for dramatic geological features.

P.S. The mangrove photo is a "manual" HDR made from two frames, one 2 stops underexposed and the other 2 stops overexposed, combined in Photoshop, then processed through Photomatix

We shot both vertical and horizontal as we were told there was a possibility of a wrap around cover.


  1. congrats. It will likely be in my kids' science book. interestingly enough one of my grand canyon shots is being published in a science textbook too on a geology chapter. None of my florida pics have been published yet.

  2. Michael,

    It's simply amazing that none of your Florida photos have been published, you're such a good photographer.

    If you are anyone else would ever like pricing guidelines for publishing use, feel free to contact us. This is what we do for a living and we'll provide you with realistic prices and a price range!