Joshua Tree In Snow

As the yearly rainfall at Joshua Tree National Park seems to be less each year this rare snowfall several years ago is a bit hard to imagine. Most of the roads into the park this particular morning were closed except the north eastern area near 29 Palms. So this took some backtracking to get to this location before sunrise.

Specific Feedback Requested

Any thoughts are appreciated.

Technical Details

Wista DXIII 4x5 - Schneider APO 150mm lens - Velvia 50

1 Like

That CERTAINLY makes me want to visit. Postcard indeed. Really lovely and well balanced. The snow looks white, but kissed with that early light. A tad hot in spots, but it looks natural enough. I need to get there one of these days.

Wow, excellent image and postcard, Paul.


A JT picture-perfect post card to be sure! I LOVE the earth’s shadow contrasted with the snow-capped peaks in the background.

Not something you see very often in the dessert and no doubt you were glad to be there and capture this one!


@_Kris @David_Bostock @Lon_Overacker , thank you taking time to review and comment on this scene from J-tree. It was a very rare outing to say the lest.
This was an easy pick for the theme as I’ve used this image on various “card” products with decent success. For me it was always a real treat to actually see where the given card(s) went and imagined just maybe at one time they were lucky enough to have visited the park… :smiley:

Paul, the colors in the sky are outstanding. Getting snow at J-tree is also special. The visual play between the main J-tree and the plants to it’s right works well.

1 Like

Thanks, Mark. I’ve been going there for years and although the temps can be in the teens many times this was only time I ever saw snow this prominent. …

@Paul_Breitkreuz I love the colors of the sky. Also, it’s great to see snow in a place I wouldn’t think of seeing it. I like to get to a place “off peak” for a different perspective sometimes. This is a special one.

1 Like

Thank you Karla for your comment. Yes, this snow event in J-Tree is rare to say the lest…

1 Like

I am not from this neck of the woods but I think I can imagine how exceptional it is to photograph a snow-topped Joshua Tree! The pastel gradient of the sky from pink to light blue is wonderful and the tree could not be better lit to stand out as the main subject. Quite a feat, too to have got to the location before sunrise. It certainly was worth it. It is a stunning, memorable shot!

Looking at your equipment, I had to look up what a Wista DXIII 4x5 was… incredible! Is this film or digital??

@LauraEmerson thank you for your review and comment on this image from J-tree. This 4x5 camera uses film. Velvia 50 is a brand that Fuji has vended off and on for years. Albeit in danger of going away in what is referred to as Large Format sizes in 2023 sometime. Hard to imagine as it has been Fuji’s flagship transparency film product for many years.
Anyway, I maybe the last film dinosaur left on NPN at this point. But to date I find it still fits my style of work.

@Paul_Breitkreuz Interesting. The level of detail from the first bush in the lower right all the way to the mountains seems exceptional! Do these cameras+lenses afford great DOF for landscape photography? How do you get the transparency into Photoshop? And how big can you print? Just curious. Not that I could take one of these in the water :sweat_smile:

What a moment Paul. The earths shadow is exceptional in this image and I love the colors in the sky. That’s a handsome J tree as the main subject caped with some fresh, white snow. The composition looks really nice as well. That’s one of the hardest things I find about shooting in Joshua Tree. Well done. Picture perfect Greeting card.

@LauraEmerson Large Format photography is not really known for overall exceptional DOF per se. But using the liberal camera movements, tilt, swing, shift, rise & fall, and some decent smaller lens apertures you can obtain acceptable DOF throughout an open scene such as this one…
btw: I use a flatbed scanner from Microtek to scan 35mm - 120 roll - 4x5 films of all types. I’ve had this i900 unit for 20+ years now.

1 Like

Thank you David for your comment. There truly is a certain amount of composition frustration that we all seem to encounter at JTNP. I’ve heard many photographers comment on that point over the years. I can relate with the issue as well…

Interesting, thank you for the info!