Matt Payne

Our guest for this episode of the podcast is landscape photographer and podcaster Matt Payne.

Matt’s passion for the outdoors shines through in his stunning landscape and nightscape photography. He finds the most enchanting moments in which vibrant colors and lively motion overhead complement the stillness of the world below. Payne uses long exposures and composites to illuminate the dark night skies and to capture the motion of the stars in visually stunning compositions. His work encourages viewers to stop and take a moment to appreciate the natural wonders of our world in ways that can’t be captured with the naked eye.

“Through wilderness exploration I have developed a unique vision for the otherwise mundane in our day-to-day life,” explains Payne. “My hope is that my life-long passion for the wilderness and exploration will continue to bring me to some of the world’s most amazing places so I can continue to share my vision of those places with the world.”
Matt is obsessed and passionate about landscape photography. He began and refined his craft on the slopes of Colorado’s most difficult mountain climbs and has since honed his vision and skills and is working diligently to bring himself to new levels. In 2014, Matt moved to Portland, Oregon and enjoyed photographing all of the wonders that Oregon has to offer, including waterfalls, rain-forests, mountains, lakes and beaches. In late 2015, Matt moved back to Colorado to reside in the town of Durango at the base of Colorado’s most amazing mountains.

Recently, Matt started his own podcast, called F-Stop Collaborate and Listen, dedicated to interviewing the world’s best landscape photographers, discussing the passion and artistic enjoyment of the craft.

Duration 42m 29s.

Music for this episode: “Zanzibar” Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0


Photos by Matt

"Nyctophilia" - Noun - a love or preference for night and darkness. After an adventurous day of rafting down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon, I hiked up a steep and uncharted ridge to view the night sky in its full glory.
I don't think I've ever pushed my body so hard for a photograph before. After three straight days of climbing mountains in Colorado with 30 pounds of photography gear, I summited Colorado's 6th highest mountain, Uncompahgre Peak just before sunrise after a 3 AM start. There was significant haze and smoke in the air from forest fires in the Pacific Northwest which contributed to the colorful light at sunrise. During this climb with my best friend Sarah Musick, I kept looking over to the east, and with each change in the light I kept pushing harder and harder to ensure I was on top before the magic began. I can't really tell you the euphoria that is created and realized when you reach the top of a high peak right before the sun crests the horizon, it is truly magnificent.
Chasing the light to 14,309 ft.
After a 20+ mile backpack into Colorado's Chicago Basin in the Weminuche Wilderness Area, my climbing partner and I got an early start at 3 AM to ascend North Eolus Peak's 14,000 ft. summit before sunrise. We were joined by mountain goats on the summit (one is in the photo, but hard to see) and enjoyed one of the most memorable sunrises in my lifetime. Directly east of us below the sun was the formidable 14,000 ft. peaks Sunlight Peak and Windom Peak (which we climbed later that day and the day after). To the right (south) towered Eolus Peak and to the left getting hit by intense light were Turret Peak and Pigeon Peak, two of the more rugged peaks in the area. Also visble in this photograph are my favorite peaks in Colorado - Vestal Peak and Arrow Peak (left of middle, sticking up like a sore thumb), Jagged Mountain, Jupiter Peak, and more. You can even make out Uncompahgre Peak and Wetterhorn Peak on the horizon as well as Rio Grand Pyramid. If you can't tell, I'm a total Colorado mountain geek. Hope you like the photo. I can't wait to print one HUGE.
Unparalleled Dawn
In order to capture the impressive Perseid Meteor Shower, I hauled my photography equipment on a gruelling 7-hour backpack up one of the steepest trails in Colorado to the 13,000 foot gap between Pigeon Peak and Turret Peak. The result was this magical scene in which I was able to gaze upon cascading meteors for three hours while shivering high above Silverton (seen bottom left) and Durango as the setting moon illuminated the ever impressive Animas Mountain and Monitor Peak across the valley from me.
Timeless Origins
 This is a 16-photo, 2-row panorama encompassing 180 degrees of view. Shot with the Nikon D800, 14-24mm lens @14mm, ISO 6400, 30s exposures @ f/2.8.
Reflections of the Cosmos at Ice Lake Basin


On the last day of my recent waterfall photography expedition with my friend Kane, we stopped at Koosah Falls at sunrise. The beautiful soft morning light was beaming through the tips of the trees behind us, lighting up the mist created by this powerful 64 ft. waterfall on the McKenzie River. Koosah Falls is located in Lane County, Central Oregon right off of Highway 126 near Sisters.
Mystical Koosah Falls
Deep within the Grand Canyon, I found one of the most amazing locations to photograph the night sky. This particular photograph represents two hours of the Earth's rotation with a thousands of stars acting as the timekeeper. The tranquility and awe imbued into this view will forever be fused into my memory. There's no doubt in my mind that the Grand Canyon deserves a place as one of the greatest wonders on Earth.
Nocturna Grand Canyon
TTIM 80 – Matt Payne and Night Sky Photography
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