Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Looking Up/Down

This week Sofia Alves of the Photographias blog is guest hosting the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. Sofia presents her challenge to look up or down to share what you see. She writes, “So, what have you discovered when you looked up or down? Were you surprised?” You can read her entire challenge post and see her views here.

For my challenge-response, I open with an image captured while I was looking up at Navarro Street from the river walk cruise boat in the San Antonio River Walk. It was nearing sunset, but the truth is, this image is an alternate reality. Using masking and exposure changes, I turned the waning day into dusk. I think it made a much more interesting image than the photo I started with.

Cosumel Sub-12

Some fifty-two feet underneath the Caribbean Sea near Cosumel Mexico, the guests from our cruise ship were looking down into the clear blue water to spot the sealife promised when we boarded the Atlantis Submarine. This image was obviously captured pre-Covid.

LV Strip-14

No, it’s not the New York City skyline, it’s the New York, New York Casino skyline that I am looking up from diagonally across South Las Vegas Boulevard. Some day, I plan to check out one of the rooms in this hotel.

St Thomas Tour-9

Looking down on the bay where cruise ships dock from high above Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, Virgin Island, we can see the Carnival Magic, the ship we left on excursion some 45 minutes or so earlier for a trip to the top of the highest point on the island.

Thunderbirds Sunday-3

Regular readers of my journal probably expected me to include looking up at aircraft probably in the opening image. So as not to disappoint completely, I have included this image of two of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds Demonstration Team at Fargo. It can be hard to capture an image of two aircraft approaching each other at a combined speed of over 500 miles per hour, but with a camera that can capture 10 images per second, it’s easier than it would seem. You just track one aircraft while holding down the shutter button. When done, you simply delete a whole bunch of images that don’t catch the moment.

Coeur D'Alene 2-1

It’s easy to provide photos that “look down” when you own a drone. I could have featured all of my “look down” images from a drone, but I decided to use that camera sparingly for this challenge. That’s simply too easy. >grin<

This view of Lake Coeur D’Alene features the Interstate bridge visible at the top of the image, and a section of the Coeur D’Alene Scenic Byway that traverses the eastern side of this natural lake.

Feel free to click on any of the images to get a better view from my Flickr site’s gallery. From there, you can scroll through the entire album, pixel peep in higher resolution, or explore the metadata from each image. You can view the entire album here.

Thanks to Sofia for hosting this week’s challenge.

John Steiner


  1. You say it is easy but I still think the photo of the Thunderbirds is pretty spectacular. As is the Lake Coeur D’Alene one. Wonderful photos.

  2. Beautifully done as always John – thanks for the aircraft, I must admit I hadn’t thought of that! Love the image with all the people looking out of the windows – very clever!

  3. A beautiful set of image selections, John. I love the Riverwalk shot, you did a great job to enhance the image. The shot of the two of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds is remarkable!!

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