So have you ever had a photograph that's so valuable that FedEx and UPS won't accept it for shipping? Charles O'Rear did. He had to get on a plane and hand-deliver it.
A nice little video visit with the photographer of the famous Windows XP wallpaper shot. (How many other people are thinking "why don't I live in a place like that?")
Shot on Fuji Velvia with a Mamiya RZ67.
(Thanks to Hans Muus)
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Featured Comments from:
Eamon Hickey: "In somebody's vacation house somewhere in the late 1980s, I came across an old National Geographic issue from the 1970s, if memory serves, with a story called 'The Middle Kingdom' about California's Central Coast. I remember being knocked out by the stunning photography for that story, by a guy called Charles O'Rear. My understanding is that he shot quite a few stories for the Geographic over about 20 years or so. He was no lucky amateur when he shot 'Bliss.'
"I kept my eye out for his work, which I'd see fairly regularly in various magazines; he did a lot of superb editorial work around the West Coast of the U.S. for many, many years. I have great admiration for craftsman/artists like him—creating distinctive and artful work within the constraints of commercial/editorial assignments.
"I started my life in the camera business at the largest pro camera store (now long gone) in the Sonoma/Napa area where O'Rear lives. I never met him, but several other pros who regularly came into the store knew him and had only good things to say.
"'Tis indeed one of the world's charmed places. Many of those pros I knew made their living shooting for the wine industry—vineyards, wineries, wine bottles etc. Scenes like 'Bliss' are everywhere."
Dave: "I'm fortunate to live in the Bay Area, about 25 minutes from where the famous Windows photo was taken. After living most my life in the upper Midwest I don't take a moment of California living for granted. In early winter the hills turn green and the landscape looks other-worldly. By mid-May, the California sun turns the seasonal grass to toast. It's still beautiful out here during the summer but not magical like the spring. The best time to take photos is when the winter storms clear. The air in California is inherently dry and the rainy weather evaporates in spectacular fashion. One morning last week it was a raining and I was home taking care of our toddler. Sensing that the weather was about to break I took my boy up to the hills on the edge of our neighborhood. Soon enough the sun popped out and I got this photo."