Saturday, 18 August 2018 23:21

There Is a Crack in the World

The rock through which the Gunnison River has carved its mighty canyon is of Precambrian age, which is to say it is from the earliest geologic history of our planet. Since the Precambrian ended a mere 541 million years before the present, the rocks of this ditch represent more than half-a-billion years of Earth's time, making Black Canyon a basement of our continent in the truest sense of the term. The walls of the canyon formed 1.7 billion years ago during a period of metamorphosis triggered by the collision of even more ancient landforms.  To stand on the rim, peering into the jagged recesses, is to feel a majestic smallness that seems to capture in the truest sense possible what it means to be human. It is an invitation to know humility and awe.

A focal length of 52mm, normal to the human eye, gave me the angle-of-view I wanted, down into the ebony depths. An aperture of f/20 provided depth-of-field, and a shutter speed of 0.3 second at ISO 100 gave me an overall medium exposure.

There is an arrogance that seems to have gotten loose in the world that seeks to place man on an equal footing with Nature. From where I stand it is a hubris that bodes ill lest we recognize our insignificance and act from that understanding.

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