IN FOCUS - VOLUME III - Flipbook - Page 33
ROCK AND A
Shiprock, New Mexico, USA
The majesty and grandeur of the
American South West is without equal
and has been a canvas for artists
for over 100 years. Early Hollywood
directors, such as John Ford, were
known for framing their characters
against the vast, harsh, and rugged
natural terrain. Arguably the location
scouting industry was born in the
South West of America.
Monument Valley in Arizona,
where we have often filmed, is probably the flagship location. But 100
miles east of there, in New Mexico,
lies Shiprock - a unique towering,
bird-like volcanic rock formation that
can be seen for miles in all directions.
It rises vertically nearly 1,600 feet
above the high-desert plain of the
Navajo and in my view is as impactful
as any location in America.
The first question though was how
could we best make use of search a
sight. We had to have a complementary narrative and we also had to play
the light to our advantage.
On a clear day at Shiprock, as we
have learnt from experience, the light
becomes suboptimal as little as 15
minutes after sunrise; it is just too
strong and Shiprock itself lights up
like a bonfire. The best plan is to shoot
almost exactly at sunrise, allowing
enough light for the characters in the
narrative to have detail and not so
much direct light on the rock itself.
It is a fine line to get right, but I think
we finally achieved it.
This image smells of the great
push West and the crew did a fabulous
job. It is always satisfying to warp a
shoot long before most people are
out of bed.
“IT RISES VERTICALLY NEARLY 1,600 FEET ABOVE THE HIGH-DESERT PLAIN OF THE
NAVAJO AND IN MY VIEW IS AS IMPACTFUL AS ANY LOCATION IN AMERICA.”
L A R GE
STA NDA R D
56” x 84” Unframed
71” x 99” Framed
Edition of 12
37” x 56” Unframed
52” x 71” Framed
Edition of 12