© Paul Conrad/Pablo Conrad Photography - The water tanks of Little America in southwest Wyoming along Interstate 80.

Backseat Landscapes: Wyoming from the Rear


Recently my wife and I drove to Colorado with our friends Homer Galloway and Rosalie Lambert. It would’ve been a lot more fun had the reason been more jovial.

Rushing By: The landscape of southwestern Wyoming

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Landscapes from the backseat: The land rushes by while driving along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
My father-in-law died and we were going to his memorial service. So to save money, we carpooled. One caveat: Homer is the kind of traveler that goes from A to B without stops except gas and groceries.

He doesn’t like stopping along the way for photo excursions. But that’s OK. It wasn’t a trip for fun so I just shot from the inside of the car.

Lone Pinnacle:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Landscapes from the backseat: rock formation along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
How do you handle boredom when someone else is driving? And do you photograph when shooting from the inside of a moving vehicle?

My technique is simple: use a zoom-telephoto in the 80-200 range. Anything wide will just make everything difficult to see in the final image. It also forces you to think about technique and composition more.

Distant Butte:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Landscapes from the backseat: A distant butte covered by incoming storm clouds while driving along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
As you’re focusing at more distant objects, keeping your aperture wide such as f/2.8, f/4, or f/5.6, also keeps your shutter speed fast to help minimize camera shake.

Shooting like this reminded me of an assignment we had in college: Pick a street corner, put your camera on a tripod, and you can only shoot from that place for 24 hours. Yes, you can move your tripod to go to lunch, your other classes, to sleep, or whatever. The purpose of the assignment was to understand that even from one spot, compositions and moments change. As so does shooting from the backseat of a car.

Blowing Snow

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Landscapes from the backseat: blowing snow obscures the road and other travelers while driving along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
Because we left on a cloudy and snowy day here in Washington mid morning, the drive was rather boring. We also didn’t get into Idaho until evening when it was getting dark. It was night by the time we hit Utah.

Storm on the Horizon

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - High winds blow snow across the highway as storm clouds form on the horizon in the west along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
Because of the somber mood, I really didn’t feel like shooting very many photos. I only have one or two from the drive to Colorado. I felt a little more alive on the way back and shot more.

Plus, because of the icy conditions on I-80, I was able to get a few “exciting” photos. You can’t expect to drive 60, 70, or 80 mph and not stay on the road. Ludicrous. We saw about a dozen vehicles on the side of the road, including several semis that passed us.

Dangerous Conditions (No injuries)

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - A semi lies in a ditch after slipping off the icy road during high winds along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.
So here Are a few “Backseat Landscapes” from the trip through Wyoming.

Red on Blue: My favorite photo from the trip

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Landscapes from the backseat: the vivid red tanks of Little America while driving along Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

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Paul “pablo” Conrad

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