Cloud Maker
Shot with a Samsung Infuse, ~4mm f/2.6 @1/2222. Edited in Photoshop for Color and Contrast. I was waiting all day to capture the vapor cloud in an interesting configuration, but I was too busy when there was no wind and it was shooting strait up into the sky.

-Matthew Neuman

I've always had a fascination with shooting clouds. This afternoon I saw the Clouds shooting challenge just before a concert in a local park. We had approaching thunderstorms and I managed to get this shot just before a foggy haze came through. It was shot with a Nikon CoolPix P7000, ISO-100, f/6.3, exposure 1/978 sec.

-Weldon Sams

Ever since the Clouds challenge was announced, I've been carrying my camera everywhere. Unfortunately, the weather in Middle Tennessee did not want to cooperate. One day it was completely clear and the next it was totally overcast. I decided that there just wouldn't be the opportunity to shoot anything interesting this week and then Sunday afternoon this cloud appeared over my house. I had just arrived at home and saw that the clouds had parted for just an instance. I ran inside and grabbed my camera and got the shot. There's just something about the Sun's rays emerging from behind storm clouds.
The shot was taken with a Nikon D90 with an 18-55 lens @ 29mm and ISO 200 at f/9.

-Win Barker

I was having a lovely vacation with my family in North Carolina when this week's challenge was announced. No doubt the ocean can provide you with some amazing clouds, so I was really just hoping to catch something grand and sweeping. These wispy clouds covered half of the whole sky, and I tried my best to capture their scale and texture.
I was using a Nikon D3100 with an 18 - 105mm f3.2 - 5.6 zoom lens and a polarizing filter set to f5.6, 1/160 sec, 18mm.

-Curtis Thompson

Taken at Hampton Beach this past weekend with an Olympus point and shoot (the waterproof one of course). The cloud in the center was pointed out to me by my girlfriend when she exclaimed that it was Superman. The likeliness is uncanny. Others with us agreed and we all watched Superman soar over the thousands at the beach...until he drifted apart shortly after this was taken.

-Zac Wallace

This photo was taken with an Olympus point and shoot camera. Laying on my back at the beach, I looked up and saw this cloud. It reminded me of a turtle. Either cause it actually looks like one or it's just because I like turtles. Regardless, I present to you, Cloud Turtle.

-Liz Fleming

I was on vacation in Florida when I saw this challenge, and it's the first one I've actually tried. I took a few good photos during the day, and I was going to submit one of them, but as we were driving back in the evening I looked out the window and saw a dove in the sky. I knew it was perfect, so I stopped, and ran across the street to get a photo to avoid getting telephone lines in it.
It was shot with a point and shoot camera, so I don't know all the settings, but this is what my computer tells me: Pentax Optio WG-1, f- 5.8, Focal length- 13.7, Exposure time- 1/100

-Lloyd McCullough

The photo contains four prominent features. The Sun, crescent of Solar Halo, the US flag, and a couple of contrails.. I was lucky enough to look up in the sky and to remember this week's photography challenge!
Camera - Apple iPhone4
No tripod
Shutter speed - 1/6033 sec
F-stop - f/2.8
Focal length - 4 mm
ISO - 80
Shot on - July 14th 2011, 9 am EDT
Location - Holland, Michigan

-Adwait Bhagwat

Saturday was a perfect day for photographing clouds, since there was a nice mixture of big puffy white ones and slightly stormy gray ones. This cloud has some of the spirit of each. The sun was almost directly behind it, and you can see its rays shooting out from behind. It was only later that I realized the cloud also looks like the mouth of a dragon. Its head reaches down from above to snap up another piece of cloud. It even has lighter patch that serves as an eye in exactly the right place. The photo was taken with a Sony DSC-H20.

-Leah Nicolich-Henkin

Happened to download the version 2 firmware for my SLT-A33 yesterday and loved the new automatic settings with single color enhancement. Took many pictures of clouds with the blue enhanced but as day turned to dusk and then full on night I switched to the yellow filter and caught this shot. Love the fact that it was taken as is, even if I had to relinquish control of many of the settings. Granted the clouds in question may not be seen as the subject but that is what I was shooting, along with the lunar corona highlighting those clouds surrounding it in my line of sight, just seemed more powerful image wise when I caught the yellow accents in the neighborhood below.
Sony Alpha 33a w/ kit lens, set to Scene/Partial Color (Yellow). F4.0, 26.0 focal length, shutter speed 1/1.3 sec, ISO 1600.

-Felonious Max

Clouds has been a tough theme since this challenge was announced. Mostly been overcast. I thought I was going to get a shot of a tornado before any decent clouds. Today (Sunday) the skies cleared up and and left some nice puffy white clouds however. I had about four that I was torn between. One had a nice weather vane in the shape of an airplane in the frame. Another looked like a bomber. Then I had one that I liked because it was taken in the overcast days where there was a slight gap in the clouds. Provided a view that left one unsure of whether the picture was taken from above or below the clouds. I settled with this one because of what I saw in it. I see a phoenix rising from the "ashes" in the middle. Kind of like it wants out of the crowded "ground" and wants into the clear sky.
Nikon D60, focal length 95mm, 1/1000sec, f/8, ISO 100.

-Daniel Thompson

So I went out and bought a cheap-o polarizing filter this week on gizmodo's suggestion and this shot was taken when I was fiddling around with how to use the filter. It's amazing how a quarter-turn of the filter can change the photo. This is a shot of Catalina Island off the Southern California coast. I thought the photo worked as the island appears to be a cloud too. My wife thought it ended up looking like a monster: the island, its mouth; and the clouds, its eyes. I took a lot of photos of clouds this week and I went with this one as it was a little different from the "standard" cloud photo.
Canon EOS REBEL T1i, EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens with CPL filter, 1/125, f/13, 55mm, ISO 100, 0 EV.

-Matthew Johnson

For a while there, I thought I would not be able to do the challenge. The day it was announce was the day a front moved in and dried out the atmosphere over Arizona. Thankfully, clouds started moving in on Saturday and storms moved back in on Sunday. I did manage to get what I think is a good shot, which I would call "Eye in the Sky". Its not as good as some of my other captures, though.
So I kept walking outside every so often with my Canon EOS Rebel T2i, checking the sky. I kept switching back and forth between my 18-55mm lens and my 55-250mm lens. Once, when driving back from shopping, I saw a formation that looked a lot like the Enterprise being followed by a Klingon Bird of Prey. Unfortunately I did not have my camera with me. Finally, as the storms were closing in and the clouds started to roil, I began to see some shapes that seems to be pretty clear to me. So I finally started snapping photos. The last one I took seems to be the best so I present a cloud formation that looks like an eye peeking through to look down on us.
Camera: Canon EOS REBEL T2i
Exposure: 0.006 sec (1/160)
Aperture: f/5.0
Focal Length: 131 mm
ISO Speed: 400
Exposure Bias: 0 EV
Whitebalance: Shade

-John Hays

Eeks, these challenges won't get any easier :-) —I've been carrying my camera around everyday, trying to find not-so-clear skies. I ended up liking this picture for two reasons: 1) the variety in colors (Thanks to the golden hour challenge for the tip!), and 2) the fact that I keep finding interesting shapes in it. At first, I thought it was Dumbo up there on the right... and now it looks like the back of a bus or car going down a ramp? Ehhh. Maybe you'll see something else! Try it out, it's fun.
I took this with my Canon T2i, 17-55mm lens.

-Diego Jiménez

I realized I had forgotten my shot for this week, just as the sun was setting. I ran outside and got this shot just as the light was disappearing.
1/100 sec at f/8, 8.56 mm, ISO 100, Canon S95 with stock 6-22.5mm lens.

-Lance Finch

I waited until the last minute to get shots for the contest, and because it was a nice summer day out in New York I went to Washington Square Park to see if I could get anything. The sun was blazing and I wanted to get it in the shot to illuminate the fringes of the clouds more so I walked around the park pointing my camera in the direction of the sun and snapping pictures. When I got back later to examine the pictures I found that while there weren't any immediately obvious figures in the cloud, I really liked the tiny little plane in the middle. Overall these seemed to be the nicest clouds captured, and after bumping the contrast a little to bring out some more blue I was happy enough to submit it.
Camera: Nikon D5000
Lens: AF-S Nikkor 18-55mm @30mm
ISO: 200
Shutter: 1/800

-Matthew Cowan

This photo is from Santiago, Chile. I took it on San Cristóbal hill, a park in the middle of the city. It was a sunny cold day. The day before had rained (it is winter here).
I took this photo with my Canon S95 .
Shutter speed: 1/400
Aperture: f/2.0
ISO speed: 80
Focal length: 6mm.

-Alejandro Martinez

This shot was taken at the baseball game on Saturday evening with my 4 year old daughter and lovely girlfriend when a storm rolled over them mountains dumping rain everywhere west of the stadium giving us a good show on and off the field.
Canon EOS Rebel T2i, Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM Lens, 15mm, f4.0, ISO 100, Shutter 1/30.

-Ben Romero

Woke up at 6 am to overcast skies and rain pouring down in Vancouver, WA. Friend picked me up and we drove 4 hours to Benton City, WA to attend a BBQ for at my girlfriend's aunt's house. After about 2 hours of driving through the rain in the Columbia Gorge the rains stopped and the skies calmed a bit and we were in 80 degree weather and nice fluffy clouds instead of flat grey skies.
Ham, baked beans and all the normal BBQ fixings (and maybe some adult beverages). Someone even brought out a classic (and banned) set of lawn darts! Eventually the weather cooled a bit as the sun went down and all of a sudden the skies popped. I grabbed my camera and jumped on a stump to get a little higher view over the neighborhood.
It only lasted a few minutes but this is one of the shots I got. I thought the power lines were going to be annoying in the picture but like how they crisscross the frame.
Nikon D300s, Nikon 50mm f/1.4, 1/500, ISO 200 @ f/6.3
Processed in Lightroom 3

-Chuck Pepper Jr.

This was taken from my balcony in NJ on a strangely cloudy afternoon. The depth of the clouds grabbed my attention. No crazy images, no crazy cameras. Tried my best to capture the amount and slope of the clouds to the horizon/houseline. Not much true horizon in NJ.
Camera: iPhone 4
Filter: Camera+ Vibrant/Clarity

-Chris Califano

Streams of light can often be seen around clouds on humid summer afternoons. It is much rarer to see them at night and usually only possible during a mostly full moon. In this case, a full moon shone behind a cloud showing streams of shadow rather than light. Stars are visible above the tree-framed view.

The shot:

Canon 5D Mark II, 2 sec exposure, ISO 1600, f/4.

-Pete Rogina

Went out to Mt. Tabor (in Portland, OR) to do some photography with a friend. She was wanting to try some manual photography, I needed more practice, this seemed like an interesting challenge.
Nikon D90, no polarizing filter, Nikon 18-105mm lens, f11, 1/250.

-Jennifer Taylor

This week I was at my parents lake house. It seamed like there were either to many clouds for a good shot or no clouds. I ended up getting this shot as I was setting up to take pictures of a firework show. This was my test shot before the show started. Little did I know that it would come out so well. I did a little post processing on this to bring out more detail. I threw the single photo into my HDR software and made a few tweaks, nothing major.
Shot with a Canon Rebel xsi with the kit lens 18-55mm set at 18mm, F/3.5, 13 sec shutter, ISO 200.

-Dan Pietrini

This picture was taken from the open sunroof of my moving car on the highway with my iPhone 4, the flash was on and reflects in the sign while obscuring the exposure for the sky and the clouds giving them that dramatic contrast.

-Ruben Nicholls

After a 4 hour hike and 3500 vertical feet; this shot was taken at 14,003 ft from Huron Peak in Colorado. Equipment: Nikon D100, 28-105mm, ISO200.

-Branden Fulton

Cloud Factory
This photo was taken at a large sulfur pit in Yellowstone. Most of the time, the rotten-egg-smelling gas was blowing straight into my face, but for just this one beautiful moment the wind shifted and I got a view of the sky, the forest, the deep blue water, and the steam rising upwards. No photo manipulation was done other than a bit of cropping; the water is this color because it is so hot (hotter than boiling) that almost nothing can grow in it. I think of it as the earth's sterile clean room for cloud creation.
Canon S95 (I just had my point-and-shoot out at the time. Trusty little bugger.) 1/1000, f/5, ISO 100.

-Chris Ward

Initially, I didn't think this shot was a keeper. However, selecting Auto Levels in Photoshop exaggerated the contrast between the light and dark clouds. That, combined with the unintended soft focus, gives the photo an intriguing, painterly quality.
Nikon D70s with Nikkor 70-300mm (100mm), ISO 200, 1/350sec @ f/8.

-Mark Reddick

I was planning on taking photos of the closed 405 Freeway during the weekend and I thought I would figure something out for the cloud challenge (or maybe I could get both in one photo). Unfortunately, there wasn't a cloud in the sky. I searched through Google Maps for a location where I could take a photo of the closed freeway and found a mall parking structure that was adjacent to it. I drove to the top of a parking structure and took this photo from there. I'm not sure if this will qualify for the challenge, but I like to call it "Not a car or cloud in sight."
Canon Powersho SD870IS, ISO: 80, f/11.

-Jerardo Arciniega

I shot this using a Canon 5D Mk II with a Tamron 28-300 XR Di lens set at 100 ISO, f/18, and shutter speed at 1/100. I wanted to get some good shots of clouds from atop a hill. This is on the lookout by the Pennybacker bridge in Austin, Texas. It hasn't rained nor have we had much of any cloud cover in the past 6 months, so I got lucky enough to pick up a shot with more than one cloud in it. I happened to see this set of clouds coming in and it resembled a flock of birds as they would fly in formation. I assumed they were all migrating north to rain up there. lol

-Brandon Nuss

-Thomas Wakim

I shot this from the Sunroof in my car – I was on the way home from running errands and noticed how intense the cloud cover was. When I saw the sun-beams, I knew I had to pull over to capture this. I keep a Canon PowerShot SX200 in the car for just such emergencies!
ISO-125, f/4, for 1/1600 sec.

-John Remmler

Wild Alaskan Skies
I have been a long time admire of this contest and all the great photos and always wanted to enter into these contest however I am a Broadcast Manager on a cruise ship and this job keeps me pretty busy with little free time to play but once I saw that the shooting challenge was clouds I new this would be an easy one for me to enter in. Being on a cruise ship in the open ocean you get to see so many amazing cloud formations and colors. So being Sunday evening in Alaska I went out on the deck and took this picture. Every night the Alaskan skies have a different show and this was tonight's show, this photo was taken at around 10:30pm. I used a Canon 7d with a 28-135mm Kit Lens, f/16 with 1/125 exposure, ISO 100 and a CPL filter on my lens.

-Brendan Dalziel

I love clouds, I have a nice view of the sky at the place where I live at, so it is really special to have this challenge. I have countless pictures of the sky and clouds, so I got one for this contest. It is a piece f the sky that is visible from my balcony. I took it at 7PM in the evening, when the sun is setting here in Singapore. Made with a Canon 550D/T2i with a 17-55 lens. I was out to capture some pretty clouds, but not going for the shape... No post processing, just some adjustments in dpp! I hope you like it :)

-Rahul Nair

While leaving a restaurant earlier this week I looked up to see this moon bow in the clouds. I got lucky on this shot because the roof of a neighboring shop was covering the moon so that it wouldn't be in the shot and it cut out a lot of moonlight. The moon that night was either full or close to being full.
The photo was shot on a Canon 7D with a 24-105L lens. The settings on the camera were ISO3200, f4, at 1/30 sec.

-Robert Nakama

When I read the post of the new contest I was on holiday in Switserland and I thought that I wouldn't make it because it was all very sunny in the Alps and there were no clouds, but then a few days later, the weather changed, the clouds came in and hung very deep in the valley. I made this photo on the border of the Swiss and Austrian Alps. The car is driving in Austria, the right side of the valley is Switserland. It was hard to take a good shot, I had to shoot it from the driving car beacaus stopping was no option, it's a busy road and there were no places to stop with a good view.
For me do the clouds in front of you look like a pyroclastic flow as a result of a vulcano erruption. The cloud on the side already came down. The clouds in the sky are ash parts. On the road I'm safe, the pyroclastic flow won't hit me, beacause the flow is down in the valley.
Camera: Sony DSC-WX1
ISO: 160
Exposure time: 1/400
F: 7.1

-Felix Wagner

Was out shooting an incoming storm last night when a heron came into view, winging off the lake. I couldn't focus well enough on a fast-moving, single bird amid the clouds and was just bemoaning my luck when this flock arrived - I assumed at the time they were geese, but the wingspread may be more like vultures or eagles. Not sure. Wet though I was, I kept shooting until the birds flew into the last piece of blue sky. This was fun. Nikon D5000, ISO 640, f/5.6, 55m

-Cathy de Moll

Used iPhone 4. It's been clear skies here in Dallas for the past 5 days. And i have tons of other great cloud pictures from the past, including some storms.

-Vegim Kamberi

This image was taken in illinois on a nice summer night. I just got done eating with my family and saw the nice light being projected on the clouds as the sun was setting. I just decided to snap a couple pictures with my phone to see how they'd turn out. I didn't think they needed any post work, I just kind of liked the image the way it turned out. I really like the streaky spotted clouds in the lower part, and that it's different from the larger front towards the top.
Iphone 4, stock Iphone camera App, HDR exposure.

-Michael Maloney

This sunset photo was taken at Bishan Park Singapore as we were walking along. We noticed the fire of the sunset reflected on the clouds and water with the apartment blocks framing the scene. on July 17th 2011 using my iPhone 4.
iPhone 4, Fstop: 2.8, exposure: 2/24sec, ISO: 80.

-Bryce Hampton

I've been waiting for a good clouds day to come along, finally, the day the contest shot was due I found these hovering over my work in downtown Kirkland, WA - my D2X is in the shop so all I had with me was an iPhone 4 and my graduated/polarized sunglasses, I set the camera app to shoot with HDR mode and snapped this. Cropped to a 3:2 - I don't like that 4:3 crap.
Camera: iPhone 4 with HDR mode on
Filter: My graduated/polarized sunglasses

-Will Christiansen