red tulips | copyright Jill J. Jensen

 

 

Mountain Light Photography

amazing images from Barbara and Galen Rowell

 

Even if you don't easily recognize Galen Rowell's name and associate it with stunning wilderness photography from the California Sierra Mountains and elsewhere around the world, you probably recognize one of his most famous photographs, Rainbow over Potala Palace. The shot of a rainbow meeting the Earth at precisely the spot in the Tibetan Himalayas where a Buddhist monastery stands became Rowell's signature image. And making it was a classic example of Rowell's 'participatory' style of photography — he ran 8 miles from the point where he first saw the rainbow in order to line it up with the temple and make the perfect image.

As both an athlete and a photographer, Rowell was more than a person with a camera hiking into the wilderness for a few snapshots. He was a skilled mountaineer who grew up scaling peaks in the Yosemite Valley and the High Sierra of California. From his unique perspective on the mountains, Rowell sought to show the rest of us the mountains and the wilderness spaces that are so vital to our sense of well-being, even if we never visit them.

Rowell was a photographer for National Geographic and Life magazines, a presence in Sierra Club calendars for years, and creator of many books showcasing his unique images from places such as Nepal, India, Pakistan, China, Tibet, Africa, Alaska, Canada, Siberia, New Zealand, Norway, Patagonia, and Antartica, as well as many areas of the United States and North America. You may not know this photographer or his photographs by name, but you'll certainly recognize his images when you see them.

Mountain Light is the photography business operated by Galen and his wife, Barbara. The Rowell family now runs the gallery and business, located near their home in Bishop, California. The website offers information about the Mountain Light Gallery, articles written by Galen Rowell, photo licensing details, fine art prints, posters, books of Rowell's images, a roster of photographic workshops held in the Eastern Sierra, and access to the special graduated neutral density filters Rowell used, as well as biographies of Galen and Barbara, who were both killed in the crash of a small plane in August of 2002, on their way home from a photography expedition to the Bering Sea.


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