The New Canon 5D MK2 At Mount Rainier National Park


Check Out An Introduction To Kevin McNeal‘s Video Blog At :

A burst of last light illuminates the snow

A burst of last light illuminates the snow


Clouds surround Mount Rainier as the peak sticks out for just a moment

Clouds surround Mount Rainier as the peak sticks out for just a moment

Well welcome to my first blog and what a great time to be in the field of photography. There is so much going on with digital photography these days that to keep on top of things you need to be involved. Today we can learn about digital photography through some many types of media that did not exist a decade ago. Whether it is podcasts, video blogs, blogs, or online tutorials, opportunities to learn are available in all sorts of avenues.


     You might be wondering who the heck I am and why would you want to read another blog. Well I promise this one will be different. In upcoming blogs, I will discuss many facets of digital photography, starting with a consistent workflow that tailors to each individual’s style, and how to get your vision onto print. I am often asked several questions daily through email about how to do this, and how can I become better, and what are the secrets to this business. I plan to deliver a comprehensive blog that will encompass everything you want to know. I am open to any sorts of suggestions and will pose questions to the readers from your feedback.


        Just a blurb to tell you a little about myself and how I got into photography. I started photography only three years ago but loved it so much I knew it was something I had to pursue. At the time I was working on cruise ships as Assistant Cruise Director sailing through the tropics and seeing some of the most stunning sunsets I had ever seen. The problem was I never could shoot from the moving ship so I came home with nothing but blurry images from a 2.0 megapixel camera that produced images too small to even print at 4” x 6”. So I decided to quit the ships and move to an area in the world that would allow plenty of opportunities to get outdoors, get closer to nature, and get away from the craziness of Vancouver, Canada where I used to live. I settled in Olympia, Washington where I was close to the Olympic Peninsula, Mount Rainier, and the cascades of Washington. Anyways here I am three years later, loving every bit of it but not without some horror stories to tell you in upcoming issues. 


      I love sharing photography stories and when it comes to my life there is no shortage of mistakes I have made along the way and I hope to share some of these so that you can avoid these pitfalls. I have learned so much in the last few years good and bad that I felt there was no better way to express how I was feeling then to write about to my fellow photographers.


The recently renovated lodge at the top of Mount Rainier gets covered in snow

The recently renovated lodge at the top of Mount Rainier gets covered in snow

     I promise to give you my all when it comes to providing an insightful, yet fun blog, that has something for everyone no matter what type of photographer you are. Every week I will be discussing current and upcoming photo trips plus sharing some of those photos from the outings. I will discuss new tips of Photoshop every week and we will be introducing a fantastic weekly series of  video tutorials covering all aspects of digital photography from workflow to post processing. There is nothing we can not discuss here so again do not be shy about sharing discussions you would like to see or learn more about.



Only a brief moment where I was able to see Mount Rainier

Only a brief moment where I was able to see Mount Rainier


     So after losing several  original Canon 5D’s to the ocean in all sorts of ways, I decided to wait out for the new Canon 5D MK 2. A three month wait felt like forever, and I was going crazy to get out and shoot again. Well this week my prayers were answered and I got my new camera in the mail. So the first thing I did with the camera was take it to Mount Rainier in a snow storm in temperatures under 0 will wind bringing it to minus 20. So how did the Canon hold up under the colder temperatures ? It handled it perfectly in all aspects of shooting and even though there was icilies frozen to all the buttons of the camera it kept shooting away. I even managed to face plant in the snow a couple of times as I tripped on my own snowshoes. Submerged in five feet of snow, I pulled out the camera immersed in blocks of snow and ice. I started thinking to myself – did I wreck my new camera on my first outing – had my face plants into the snow   trying to find somewhere to shoot the sunset cost me ? Did I have to learn another lesson about slowing down ? Well the good news folks is that even will all my bad luck the new camera continued to shoot with excellent results. I even shot into the sun a couple of times near sunset as was able to get good results with minor evidence of flaring. A lot of people have asked me how it performed in terms of sharpness on the outside perimeters. The results were amazing to say the least with results that blew away my expectations . I encourage anyone that has the means to purchase this camera not to hesitate. I have provided some images here that show some of the different types of scenes the camera was able to handle and some of the exposure challenges the camera was able to overcome. In upcoming blogs I will discuss further adventures with the camera and how it performed in different conditions.


One of many rivers that make their way through Mount Rainier

One of many rivers that make their way through Mount Rainier


As sun goes below the mountain peaks the snow reflects the sun's colors

As sun goes below the mountain peaks the snow reflects the sun's colors



I will keep this short as I am more a story teller with my images then my words and we all love to look at pictures so enjoy !

Thanks for stopping by and don’t be shy about what you would like to see in upcoming blogs.


Snow everywhere

Snow everywhere

~ by kevinmcneal on December 24, 2008.

11 Responses to “The New Canon 5D MK2 At Mount Rainier National Park”

  1. Cool, looks like I’m the first person to comment. just wanted to say I love your work, you, Marc Adamus, Adrian Klein and Zach Schneph [I know I did’nt spell his name right] are my landscape photography idols, thanks for the blog and I’ll check it regularly.

  2. Bonsoir, j’adore votre reportage en photos c’est magnifique,,

  3. j’espere que vous allez nous en faire d’autres et toujours aussi fantastique MERCI

  4. Kevin, stunning shots as always. Looking forward to your thoughts and insights on this whole photography thing.
    Thanks for taking us along.

  5. These are such beautiful images! Nice work.

  6. Kevin, your winter shots simply blow me away.
    Living in one of the snow covered areas myself, while not being a “cold person”, is quite a task and I always find it hard to get out with in temperatures around -20F with wind chill. Your amazing photographs actually make me looking forward to the snow forecast for the next few days. Your sunset pictures of Mt. Rainier are wonderfully warm (Seems I need to get my hands on the SR Blue-N-Gold polarizers, huh?) and perfectly composed.

    I am so glad I ran into you and your stream on flickr.
    Looking forward to your blog — knowing it’s going to be great!!!


  7. Kevin – welcome to the blogosphere. Looking forward to reading your posts and seeing all the new images your 5D Mk II has to offer!

  8. Hi Kevin, I have just finished reading all about your experiences in photography and it has really enhanced my admiration (which was extremely high) for your photos into a near perfect opinion. Your camera has shown your talent so well! I got some great information about photography here and am really looking forward to your blogs! Thank you! Katherine

  9. Hi Kevin, I have read your article and really admired all the winter photos as I live in a place where winter lasts for 8-9 months.Will be waiting for your blog with impatience. Thank you! Luba

  10. Hi, I just came across your blog. I haven’t been able to read all of it yet, but I will definately be working on that. Your photos are wonderful. I am just starting out in photography, I will most likely never go to the beautiful places you do, so I will travel there thru your “eyes” and photographs. Hmm now I feel bad I bought a Nikon LOL
    Keep up the beautiful work.

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