Neon Canyon Aerials with LuluLemon
I’ve always wanted to photograph the Golden Cathedral which is the big finish to Neon Canyon. We finally got the opportunity to hit the canyon when we were down in Escalante doing a little exploring and shooting with Kaydee’s new schwag from LuluLemon. Neon Canyon itself makes for a fun but long day of technical canyoneering with some swimming, squeezes and raps to keep you on your toes! We hit the trail late and knew we would end up spending the night somewhere in the desert so we packed up our stove, some food, aerial gear, technical canyoneering gear and somehow stuffed the photo gear into my new test Gregory Baltoro as well. This was the first time I really got to put my new Sony gear through some real world abuse!
Photo Kit (Affiliate links:) :
- Sony A6300
- Metabones MKIV EF to NEX (e-mount) Adapter
- Canon 24-70 2.8 II
- Sigma 12-24 f4.5
- Speedlights x2
- Honeycomb grids for said speedlights
- Honl Gel set
- x2 12′ Lightstand
- My bulletproof Gitzo Carbon Tripod
- Imlay Canyon Gear 70m 9.2mm Canyonero
- Imlay Canyon Gear 70m 8.3 Canyon Fire
- x2 Petzl Grigri
- x2 Petzl Reverso Guide
- x2 Petzl harnesses
- x2 30ft 2inch webbing superthreads
- 30ft 2inch webbing
- Assorted stoppers
- x2 Large oval carabiners
- x4 8ft prussiks
- x2 pairs neoprene booties (had to do some swimming in the canyon)
- x4 CAMP 10mm Stainless oval quicklinks
- x2 CAMP 10mm stainless triangle quicklnks
- CAMP rescue double pulley
- Dry bag for photo gear
- Overnight gear just in case (RAB 20degree sleeping bags, Big Agnes pads, jetboil stove and some snacks)
- The usually backcountry first aid kit (sam splint, celox, Israeli bandage)
Right off the bat I can’t believe the weight and size difference with the A6300. I’m so used to lugging around a DSLR that it feels almost comical to be setting out for a shoot with a camera half the size and a third of the weight. On this trip though every ounce off the normal kit was so appreciated.
We started off the day already pretty far in the backcountry so by the time we got to the trailhead the late afternoon start made for a warm hike.
We hit the Escalante River and were happy to kick the boots off for a couple of water crossings. Feels good on the sore and sandy feet! (Canon FD 50mm 1.4 SSC adapted with Photodiox)
With daylight fading fast we found a boulder on the rim of the canyon to give a little shelter from the wind and prepped the canyon gear for the morning. #notentneeded
Clear and quiet skies.
What this photo doesn’t show is going for a little swim in the potholes that lead up to the cathedral. Nothing like 40-50deg water at 6 in the morning ; )
Rapping into the cathedral!
The morning light reflecting into the cathedral was beautiful and gave me a great base exposure of 1/200 @ F/4.5 ISO800 with Daylight WB, but I wanted to really highlight the aerialist and to get a little shadow onto the back wall. I set both strobes on full power and put a honeycomb on the strobe on the light stand pointed at the dancer (/wife). I then popped the other strobe up into the ceiling on the left to help soften some of the shadows and to give me a little glow.
The final shot with and without strobes.
After playing with a few poses I settled on something that emphasized the white contrast in the image. Daylight WB….they don’t call it the Golden Cathedral for nothing ; )