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Norm Cooper

Norm Cooper



My first camera was a Russian Zenit all manual 35mm camera... I used it during high school photography class and was hooked. I was tapped by the yearbook editor from photo class to fix the poor school yearbook photography, we shot a years worth of portraits fixed as many team and club photos as we could in the three months before the deadline. Since then I have always carried a camera around, typically shooting landscapes and Arizona storms and lightning. In 2004 I made the jump to digital, all Canon gear. My wife runs a wedding photography business for which I am a supporting shooter My photos have been published widely in print, web, and news media Also an iStock and Getty Images contributor.

Overnight in the Canyon

Published April 28th, 2012

I watched radar from my house in Phoenix and saw thunderstorm developing, so I decided for a run to the Grand Canyon... mainly for star shots overnight. I arrived at the South Rim Yavapai overlook just after sunset. There was hardly a spot to be had along any point at the rim with all of the tourists. Within 5 minutes after the sun set I was about the only person remaining. Little do people know that the 'magic' light often happens AFTER sunset. In this case a thunderstorm moved slowly toward the Canyon, all the while popping bolts. I had the aperture open wide for this shot which blew out the lightning strikes. This thunder-cell moved across the vastness of the dark abyss below. I then parked near the Yaki Point - South Kaibab trail-head, packed all of the gear (two cameras, 5 lenses, one tripod, on telescope motor-mount for star shots) into my backpack and headed down the steep trail in the dark - alone. In an hour I arrived at the Cedar Ridge rest-house where I walked out ...

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