The Real False Kiva at Night

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    Flickr friends, here is my attempt at making a unique and real photo of False Kiva. We hiked in at about 4 in the afternoon, watched and photographed the sunset, then spent hours getting our shots set up and lighting figured out. Then we waited until 3AM for the milky way to make its way into view. For this shot I have a lot of lighting going on... In the kiva I have my 580EXII strobe pointed towards the camera with a purple gel, shooting at a silver reflector disk. This flash was popped 3 times at 1/4 power with skyports. I am standing camera right with my vivitar flash in hand. Two pops at 1/2 power on zoom setting, at a very specific point on the ampitheater roof above the camera (it took test ~100 frames to find this magic spot) and then switch it to wide angle, 1/16th power, single pop against the far right wall to bounce more light back into the amphitheater.

    Anyway, now I am going to rant about the rediculous Astronomy Picture of the Day for September 29, 2008 posted by Wally Pacholka. When I first saw his A True Image from False Kiva all I could think is what a load of crap. It is one thing to photoshop things into photos and create a stunning image -- but it is another to call it a true image and suggest it is 'real' and spread that lie far and wide across the internet (especially for such a fragile cultural resource). Sorry Wally, I don't care what you say, your image is super fake and you did a terrible job at the photoshop faking. The horizon looks terrible -- I assume you did a magnetic lasso and deleted the sky with out even feathering it. The milky way is too bright and sharp -- the only way you got that is with a sidereal drive tripod, shooting just the sky and then photoshopped the sky back in. The milky way in your shot is too large too, its not quite that big in real life. Sorry to bust your balls, but if you'd come clean about how you made the image, I wouldn't care. Throw in that crap about mountain lions and you sir are a bozo.

    Desert.Sage {:::Heating UP!!:::}, and 36 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. poorpoor 76 months ago | reply

      hahaha I've read all those arguments before. Of the many pictures I've seen taken from that exact spot, yours is certainly unique. Great work.

    2. RightBrainPhotography 76 months ago | reply

      W-O-W . . . well worth your effort, I would say.
      Superb job Jason!

    3. Summit42 76 months ago | reply

      been wanting to paint this site for a long time... you beat me to it
      Looks great.

      First time I went to false kiva we packed down a growler and a 18pack.... no mountain lions either.

    4. Scott Stringham "Rustling Leaf Design" 75 months ago | reply

      the best i have ever seen from this spot, and way way better that the badly done edit from several years ago.

    5. zzyzx@ffm 75 months ago | reply

      Hi Jason,

      absolutely beautiful, I love it - great job.
      You captured this photo in June the 7th.
      Thus we met and your photo friend Charlie on 06.06.2010 into False Kiva after sunset.
      The world is so small :-)

      Greetings from Germany

    6. PatinaLatina 73 months ago | reply

      Was this inspired by the Astonomy Picture of the Day (APOD) that was taken here with moonlight?

    7. wolfvonder 65 months ago | reply

      Yes seriourscher, looks like Wally's image has lots of moonlight and even then, he got an unreal amount of light from the Milky Way.. I don't see a large aperture on his image so even with 12,500 ISO (which he didn't have at the time) I bet the image wouldn't come out as his. It's a great image but I hate how he says it's a single exposure... nothing wrong with photoshop, but don't deny it! His horizon sucks!

      Caddymob: great image, love the gel blasts...thanks for clarifying about Wally's image, i believe you more than him. I think his images are great, and even his version of the kiva is great, but he could already quit the crap about no photoshop.

    8. Camerons Personal Page 65 months ago | reply

      Wow this is totally sick and VERY inspiring! Bravo!

    9. samutahjazz 62 months ago | reply

      alright man let me get this straight..... you critique and criticize the other guys picture, a freakin amazing picture, and then proceed to show us your piece of shit RED version? seriously this is a terrible picture dude. and with that 3 paragraph rant up there, it just makes this whole thing pretty pathetic. You suck.

    10. PatinaLatina 62 months ago | reply

      sam feltis a dumbass who can't read and tell what's photoshopped.

    11. samutahjazz 62 months ago | reply

      wow way to go defending your internet pal. fuckin homos.

    12. PatinaLatina 62 months ago | reply

      sam feltis keep trolling, motherfucking asshole. go kiss your momma's ass.

    13. samutahjazz 62 months ago | reply

      oh my god dude hahahaha. since you are so shook that you blocked me from your pictures i'll respond here. The comments on my pics are priceless. i didnt even delete them they are awesome. "fuck off, asshole. dicks are faggot these days"? what are you from fucking romania or something? are you running your counries shit talk thru an internet translator or are you a retard?? "hmm. a good time to kick your balls. kiss your momma's ass good night. XP " could you go back on my page and write a lil explination below all your comments?

    14. Summit42 62 months ago | reply


    15. Sandsoftime49 52 months ago | reply

      I have personally talked to Wally about his picture. He timed his visit to be with a cresent moon in the sky - this provided the illumination of the canyon cliffs that you see. He lit the innner part of the cave with his flashight. He explained that his older Canon camera, with it's larger pixel size, is perfect for gathering in the very dim light from the Milky Way during his time exposure, which he said was about 30 seconds. He said there is no Photoshop trickery of any type, and judgeing from all his other great night work at many different western sites, I believe him.

    16. john_h_moore 51 months ago | reply

      Very nice shot.

    17. wishiwsthr 44 months ago | reply

      Well done, and I fully agree with you about Wally Pacholka's picture, definitely photoshopped, which I have no problem with. The imagination is the only limit to what a person can create with photography. You can do it with lighting techniques, filters, layers, stitching, selective color, on and on. I don't think Wally did anything illegal with his interpretation of False Kiva, and he definitely got rave reviews, but I do prefer this picture; Wally's photo is poorly photoshopped in my estimation.

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