Arizona’s slot canyons are renowned for their beauty, especially the Antelope Canyons, both Upper and lower, located near Page, Arizona. Formed by flash floods that eroded the Navajo Sandstone, eons of erosion by wind and water have created intricate and sensuously curving patterns in the rock.
Eloquent Light Photography Workshops’ Craig Varjabedian took a small group of adventurers on a week-long trek that included three days exploring the canyons. Travel writer and photographer Lee Daley was there, and wrote about her experience. Here are some excerpts from her account:
“More than just an opportunity to take great photos, a visit to the slot canyons comes pretty close to being a spiritual experience. Having photographed extensively in both Upper and Lower Antelope Canyons, Craig felt we should concentrate our time in Lower Antelope, where lighting is better in the early hours and late afternoon. Craig spent time with each member of the group. Because of the wide range of light, we worked a lot of images in HDR (high dynamic range.)
After many years of conducting photography workshops in the Southwest, Craig has developed personal and often unique relationships with places and people all over the region. One evening, everyone was invited to the home of a Navajo elder for dinner and the opportunity to photograph. Another evening, we hiked over the reservation to a magnificent overlook where we photographed and lingered until the last light was extinguished. We reluctantly traipsed back to the van with only starlight and a crescent moon to light our way.
An unexpected benefit of traveling with a photo group was the camaraderie of our small band of like minded photographers. Over dinner each evening, we reviewed the day’s challenges and accomplishments with shared insights and tips. For anyone wanting to come away from a visit to Arizona’s slot canyons, I would highly recommend a photography workshop as a memorable learning vacation that will reward you with skills lasting a lifetime.”
Note: Eloquent Light will be returning to the Slot Canyons November 2017 as part of workshop On the Road: Photographing the American Southwest.