Brad Goldpaint is a professional photographer who takes devastating photos of the sky -- like the amazing one of the Milky Way over the Venus/Jupiter conjunction -- and he specializes in putting amazing foreground objects in his shots. I saw this particular picture on his Google+ page, and asked him if I could post it here. He said yes:
This photo, "Rekindled Flame", was shot on May 3, 2011 at Balanced Rock in Arches National Park. I asked Brad about the glow on the horizon, and he suspects it was a town's light, but the nearest town in that direction was nearly 200 km away! One thing I'll note: the rock on the left -- that kind of formation is called a "hoodoo", and I love that word -- wasn't being lit by the town's light; Brad actually used a flashlight to very lightly illuminate it. I like this; if it had been just a shadow it wouldn't have looked nearly s impressive as it does in this picture; the slightly lit nature gives it depth and, somehow, a sense of patience I rather like. Anthropomorphization? Sure, why not. Scientists have imagination, too, y'know.
Image credit: Brad Goldpaint, used with permission.
Related Posts: - Galactic arch over the conjunction - The skies reflect our spinning world (a gorgeous time lapse video by Brad Goldpaint) - Well, at least light pollution makes for a pretty time lapse