Yosemite Valley

yosemite valley

Yosemite Valley

With more than 3.5 million visitors a year, this view of Yosemite Valley from the Tunnel Overlook must have been photographed countless times. Yosemite Valley is an area of outstanding natural beauty in the western Sierra Nevada mountains of northern California. We spent just a couple of nights in the area on our trip to California last year, so really had only a small taste of it. Yosemite National Park is certainly somewhere I’d like to return to though.

The Tunnel View Overlook, at the western entrance to Yosemite Valley, was opened in 1933 and provides a stunning first view to visitors entering via Wawona Tunnel. A few of Yosemite National Parks most famous landmarks are visible from here, including El Capitan, Half Dome, Glacier Point and Bridal Veil Falls. Unfortunately for us, the falls had dried up when we visited in late summer. Spring is the best time for the waterfalls which are fed by melting snow.

The clouds were perfect for long exposure photography on the day we visited Yosemite Valley, so I decided to use the 16 stop Formatt Hitech Firecrest ND filter which gave me a four minute exposure time. Having admired so many black and white images of Yosemite by the master landscape photographer Ansel Adams, my first choice for processing was always going to be monochrome. I do have a number of software tools for black and white processing and often try an image out in a few of them to see if I get an effect that I like. In this case, I found that the Ansel in the Valley filter in ON1 Effects 10 really suited this image. With a name like that, I guess it had to! After making a few adjustments to the ON1 preset to match my taste, I did some dodging and burning in Photoshop and this is the result.

Prints available here.

Pin it on PinterestShare on Facebook+1Share on TwitterDigg ThisShare on LinkedInSubmit to redditSubmit to StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare

Ecola State Park at Sunset

Ecola State Park at SunsetEcola State Park at Sunset

Ecola State Park is on the northern Oregon coast, between the town of Seaside and Cannon Beach. It had rained for just about the entire day before we visited Ecola State Park. In fact, the rain was so torrential the day before that we spent the afternoon in our chalet in Seaside watching old films on the VHS video player provided by the hosts. It was great to get out along the gorgeous Oregon coastline on the following day though. After scouting out this viewpoint at Ecola Point earlier in the day, we returned for the sunset and were treated to a beauty.

This shot was taken looking south towards Cannon Beach, shrouded in mist in the distance, just after the sun had set further to the right. The image was created from three bracketed shots, merged to a 32bit tif file in Lightroom and then processed in Photoshop with On1 Effects 10.

Prints available here.

Pin it on PinterestShare on Facebook+1Share on TwitterDigg ThisShare on LinkedInSubmit to redditSubmit to StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare

Mirror Lake | Oregon

mirror lake in oregon with reflection of mount hood

Mirror Lake, Oregon

Mirror lake is accessed via a forest trail of about a mile and a half from route 26 near Government Camp. We arrived here late in the afternoon and only just made it to the lake before the sun went down. However, this was the perfect time of day to catch the low angled sun lighting the slopes of Mount Hood, which is nicely reflected in the lake. It’s quite obvious from this view how Mirror Lake gets its name!

The image is a manual digital blend of two exposures, as the dynamic range between the bright sun on Mount Hood and the shadows of the trees around the lake was too wide for the camera to capture in one shot. I combined the exposures in Photoshop, using luminosity masks, and finished the processing using On1 Effects 10.

Prints available here.

Pin it on PinterestShare on Facebook+1Share on TwitterDigg ThisShare on LinkedInSubmit to redditSubmit to StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque at Twilight

sheikh zayed grand mosque at twilight

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque at Twilight

Here is another shot of the amazingly beautiful Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. We spent a few hours here from late afternoon until dark. The blue hour, just after sunset, provided the perfect time to capture some gorgeous colours along with the stunning architectural features. I really liked how the warm light from the cloisters, the lanterns on the path and the glow in the sky contrasted with the blues. It was very peaceful standing here and enjoying the view, while my camera captured the shots required to create this image.

This is a digital blend of several exposures which I merged to a 32bit TIF in Lightroom. I then exported it to Photoshop and edited with On1 Effects 10 and Topaz DeNoise. You can download a free version of the On1 Effects 10 plug-in here.

Prints available here.

Pin it on PinterestShare on Facebook+1Share on TwitterDigg ThisShare on LinkedInSubmit to redditSubmit to StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare

Golden Gate Bridge at Night

golden gate bridge at night in san francisco

The Golden Gate Bridge at Night

After spending the afternoon in the picturesque little town of Sausalito, we drove down to Fort Baker for the sunset and stayed to capture this shot of the Golden Gate Bridge at night. It was a pretty spectacular sunset that evening and some of the pink colour remained in the sky when I took this 30 second exposure about an hour later. It gets quite chilly down there with a strong wind blowing across the bay and this was about the last shot I took before we packed up and drove back over the bridge to San Francisco for some supper.

Prints available here.

Pin it on PinterestShare on Facebook+1Share on TwitterDigg ThisShare on LinkedInSubmit to redditSubmit to StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare
F a c e b o o k