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Author Topic: Bryce Canyon Inspiration  (Read 1353 times)

Lonnie Utah

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Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« on: July 06, 2014, 08:18:41 PM »

Went to Bryce Canyon for the 4th, to escape the heat. Spent several days there.

I'm not sure I have words for this one. I'm still in awe of what turned out to be an epic sunrise was that morning..

Hope ya'll enjoy.



Focal Length 16 mm
Shutter Speed 1 s
Aperture f/22
ISO/Film 160
3 stop reverse ND grad
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Colorado David

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2014, 09:32:03 PM »

Great capture.  Foreground, canyon, sky, every element is superb.  Well done.  I wish I'd been there too.

Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2014, 09:53:26 PM »

Great capture.  Foreground, canyon, sky, every element is superb.  Well done.  I wish I'd been there too.
+1.
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Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2014, 04:22:35 AM »

Wonderful.

francois

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2014, 06:04:44 AM »

Great composition and glorious sunrise...
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Francois

Lonnie Utah

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2014, 11:35:28 AM »

One thing about Bryce that makes it "difficult" for my preferred style of shooting is often times the foreground elements leave something to be desired. They aren't very "clean". The "solution" to that "problem" is to switch to a little bit longer lens and leave out the dominating foreground elements. One then makes the mid-ground work as a foreground, the "background" work as the mid-ground and the sky work as the "background". That works very well and and I've got lots of shots like that from this trip and others. Often times what "troubles" me about those shots is that due to the nature of the landscape you get distracting elements that pop in on the edges of the frame. Trying to frame them out of the image simply results in losing some other area of drama in the composition. That's simply the way it is at Bryce.

With that being said, my #1 goal for this trip was to make a "dramatic" composition with a very strong foreground element. The morning I took this shot, I found this spot well before sunrise (I had been shooting the milky way about 90 mins before sunrise and the sky had gotten bright enough that the milky way was no longer clearly defined). I snapped an image of this in the pitch black and moved on. The farther around the Rim Trail I traveled, the more my mind kept coming back to that spot. So after about 15-20 mins of exploration along the Rim and finding nothing better, I went back to this spot. It took me about 5-10 mins of recomposing the image for me to get it where I was happy with it (I kept running into the issues above, along with where to place the sun in the scene). Fortunately for me, during this image, the sun went behind the closer stratus clouds while continuing to illuminate the altocumulus clouds high in the sky. It made balancing the exposure (which was challenging as I was shooting pretty much direly into the sunrise) way easier. I still had to use a 3 stop revers GND filter to balance the exposure.

With that back-story, there are alot of "design elements" that I intentionally utilized in this photo. All of these are present in this photo in some way:

Contrasting colors: Orange/blue are on opposite sides of the color wheel. It's why even though This Image has a "better" sky, I personally prefer the one in this post). The natural red/pinks/oranges of the rocks in this part of the world, will often naturally provide this contrast and it's why Southern UT and Northern AZ are mecca's for landscape photography.

Congruent elements/Juxtaposition of elements: The light colored flowers and the light clouds mimic each other in color, luminance and form.

Leading lines: The different sedimentary layers in the hoodoos and the altocumulus clouds direct the viewers eye towards the center of the image.

S-Curve: The green trees moving thru the middle of the image work similarly the leading lines above. It also proves as sense of "movement" in the image.
Intersecting layers: See "deep space" below.

and my favorite "Deep space" (the sense of "infinite" depth in the image). The foreground, mid-ground, background and sky IMHO, work together very well in this image to provide a sense of vastness to the landscape.

There's alot going on in this image that the casual observer might not pick up on.
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chuckn

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2014, 04:56:54 PM »

Very Nice. I need to get over that way again. Its been about 10 years.
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2014, 05:34:56 PM »

Lonnie,
That's an excellent analysis of your own photo. The photo plus your commentary make a good tutorial on photographing Bryce.

I'm glad you didn't post the essay until after some of us had the chance to form our own impressions.
It provides a good catalog of all the things I didn't do right my one time in Bryce, so now I can understand my own missed shots better.

Eric
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nma

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2014, 08:47:32 PM »

Lonie,

I appreciate your narrative on how you conceived this photograph. It is wonderful. Still, I have a question you did not discuss, the choice of aperture value -- i.e. f stop. The image caption indicates f22. Why did you choose this aperture? If I were shooting this I might choose f11, which  I think would give adequate depth of field. Actually I would probably go with f5.6 and do focus stacking, so as to get really sharp focus near middle and far.
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Lonnie Utah

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2014, 10:46:24 PM »

Lonie,

I appreciate your narrative on how you conceived this photograph. It is wonderful. Still, I have a question you did not discuss, the choice of aperture value -- i.e. f stop. The image caption indicates f22. Why did you choose this aperture? If I were shooting this I might choose f11, which  I think would give adequate depth of field. Actually I would probably go with f5.6 and do focus stacking, so as to get really sharp focus near middle and far.

Thanks for asking.

Very simple answer. The Flower was only about 18" in front of the lens. Had I selected f/11 or even f/16, my maximum far distance would only be about 8 feet from the camera lens. At f/22, it's infinity. To me, the risk of loss of sharpness due to defraction was less than the risk of loss of sharpness due to not having enough depth of field. (And yes, I most likely could have set it at f/11 and focused to the hyperfocal distance and been ok, but I didn't want to take any chances).  I will say this, the wind was blowing like crazy on the canyon rim and I was very, very worried about motion in the flowers due to the wind. If I thought I could have opened the lens up a little more and gotten away with it, I would have. 

Cheers,
L

« Last Edit: July 08, 2014, 10:49:59 PM by Lonnie Utah »
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luxborealis

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2014, 06:33:37 PM »

Wonderful photograph. Lonnie. I'm amazed you got away with a 1s exposure. Being up on a ridge like that, I'm surprised there wasn't wind to contend with. Great timing! "8 and be there" or, in your case, 22.

Thanks for sharing.
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Lonnie Utah

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2014, 06:45:26 PM »

Wonderful photograph. Lonnie. I'm amazed you got away with a 1s exposure. Being up on a ridge like that, I'm surprised there wasn't wind to contend with. Great timing! "8 and be there" or, in your case, 22.

The wind was blowing a ton. If you look closely (at larger magnifications) you can see movement in the flowers, I don't think it detracts TOO much.

Oh and this...

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davidh202

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Re: Bryce Canyon Inspiration
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2014, 05:34:14 PM »

Lovely capture Lonnie!

 "went there to escape the heat" you say!?

Where do you normally shoot, Death Valley in the middle of summer? ;-)
I've been to Bryce a couple of times through the years, and it wasn't exactly cool hiking the floor of the canyon with 30lbs of gear on the back.  ::)
David
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