Welcome to the North by Northwest Mafia light Painting Adventure from the beautiful Arches National Park, Moab Utah.


Delicate Painting

This adventure started when the NXNW 2013 crew- Justin Balog, Rick Louie, Dave Wilson, Bob Lussier, Mark Garbowski, Chris Nitz and myself headed out to Delicate Arch for the sunset. As you can see from the picture below, a couple of hundred others had the same idea that evening. It was crazy, to say the least, and we all thought the 1.5-mile hike up here was going to be a bust with all these people jockeying for position on the arch. This was a fisheye shot to capture the magnitude of the Arch and the crowd, that’s Dave Wilson in the right foreground with the Burnt Orange hat.


Delicate Arch

I am not really sure how the exact details came about, but when the sun went down and people started to scatter we found ourselves invited to stick around the bottom of the dome and hang out with a Dave Black light painting workshop that was going on that night, Dave was there to light up Delicate Arch and the NXNW mafia could hang out and shoot with the group as long as we stayed back from the class and did not get in anyone’s way. NO PROBLEM for this chance of a lifetime with the famous Dave Black! This was another DID NOT SUCK moment on the trip, just when we thought the sunset was going to a be a bust. Time flew by and focusing was tough but we all had a blast. I managed to get a couple of keepers out of the experience. The top photo shows the workshop group that was set up in front of our vantage point.

Theaterwiz, Moab, Light Painting, Arches

We had so much fun on Delicate Arch we wanted more, so we set out to paint Double Arch. Rick Louie had a super-duper Brinkman spotlight with him and Chris Nitz was kind enough to do the honors of lighting up the arch, what a great job he did and the results were awesome for the first time light painting, what a blast. All these images were single exposure shots around 30 seconds, hopefully, you will enjoy them as much as I did taking them, what a night for the NXNW crew.

Moab Gazing


Moab Gazing II


Thanks for stopping

Please check out the other shots taken by the group

Dave Wilson   Justin Balog  Rick Louie  Chris Nitz  Bob Lussier  Mark Garbowski


This Post Has 16 Comments

  1. Epic – you nailed it like a pro!

    By the way, one correction – that’s not red, it’s burnt orange. Never make that mistake if you end up down in Austin. People here are pretty passionate about their burnt orange.

  2. Mike, super awesome!!! Never tried shots like this….2 cool!!!! Time to hang these on the wall!!!!

  3. Fantastic! The whole post captures the night perfectly! The experience was way cool.

  4. I love that you were able to incorporate the bush into the image!

  5. These are freaking awesome Mike. That is a great hike although when I did it, the winds were blowing 40-50mph (they even closed the highway to trucks). Love the light painting shots especially Double Arch.

  6. Wonderful images, Mike. I am truly envious of your group, the experiences you had and the fantastic shots like these that you captured (and a free lesson from Dave Black!)

  7. Those Double Arch shots are awesome! Especially the first one with the rock and bush in the foreground. What a day we had.

  8. Mike just when I thought you can’t possibly out do yourself you did. These are spectacular images.

  9. Super stoked to have this blog shared with me today on facebook. I was a part of the group with Dave Black shooting the Delicate Arch. I had such a blast that weekend with Dave Black and others. It was my first time light painting, and I now see everything so differently. It brought out my creativity, once again! Thanks for taking me back to that weekend and moments that DID NOT SUCK :)


  10. Dude..I revisited it today because these were so Pro..awesome stuff man!

  11. Outstanding shots. Thanks for posting the image of all the other photogs. Dave mentioned it in his blog post, but having a picture of it really drives how popular that place is home.

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Painting the Arches