In 2006 when Holly and I first visited Easter Island, I didn’t have a great camera, and I had only recently started getting back into photography. It would take me a few more years to truly rekindle my passion for the hobby and finally buy a decent camera. While I secretly can’t stand when people say, “Oh, you must have a really good camera!” upon seeing a nice image (it sort of implies that photography doesn’t require any skill, just nice gear), there is a bit of truth to the statement… you at least need something that isn’t a total piece, and then a whole lot of practice.

That said, I had a bone to pick with Easter Island. I LOVE Easter Island. Everything about it fascinates me, and frankly I didn’t have a single picture of it that I loved. I had to go back, and this time I’d have no shortage of gear with me. I not only took my camera, but I rented a super nice one as well, bought a new lens, and borrowed another nice lens from a friend of mine. I was bound and determined to get some good shots… and this time, island gave me plenty. So many in fact, that I couldn’t pick just three to share on my website, so, you’re getting a bunch! 🙂

As I said, Easter Island is totally fascinating to me, and the most fascinating part of it, is Rano Raraku. This is the place where all the giant statues, the Moai, were carved, and started their journeys to various locations around the island. This is where it all started, if you will, and it is where the biggest concentration of statues is on the island. It’s just plain ole neat to see! I was completely disappointed to see that they had changed the park rules and you can’t get in the area after 5 or 6 in the afternoon, but I was able to get special permission on two occasions, so it worked out. Sunset from the quarry was amazing, as was sunrise (more on that later though!).

More next week!

–Dan Thompson

Easter Island

Rano Raraku at Sunset

Rano Raraku at sunrise from the road

It’s hard to get a good handle on how big this crater is… but it’s HUGE. If you look at the base on the left, you can barely make out all the statues sticking up out of the dirt

Pointing Home

The shadows of the Moai at Tongariki point towards Rano Raraku as the sunrises.

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