MONUMENT VALLEY SUNRISE, MONUMENT VALLEY UTAH
I set my alarm to wake me up at 5:30am on the morning that I took this photo. As soon as it went off, I leapt out of bed at The View Hotel, a hotel that is on the reservation where Monument Valley is located, and this view can be seen from nearly every balcony of the hotel. The sun was still below the horizon when I woke up, but the glow from it was already there. I grabbed my camera(s) and went outside in my mis-matched pajamas to join a surprising number of other spectators and hotel guests who had the same idea I did. I photographed the sun as it went from a slight glow to a ball of fire on the horizon. I snapped away in total silence as 15 other pajama-clad tourists around me watched the same sight I was seeing. We were all speechless and well aware that this was an experience we would not soon forget. As the sun started to get a little higher above the horizon, the other tourists dispersed to go start their day and I was left wanting more. I walked further down the path so that the sun would go behind one of the mittens, and this caused a moment of photographic illusion as the light appeared to be separating the "thumb" of the mitten, and the sunlight appeared to be "beaming" at me with awesome flare. I photographed this for a few minutes when I saw my blessing coming down the long winding road: a single truck leaving a beautiful trail of dust for the light to play in. A feeling overwhelmed me as I snapped the photo...the feeling a capturing a perfect moment that came together right before my eyes.