Friday, April 19, 2013

Contender Garry Everett

A slight change in weather conditions within the hour provided American Landscape contest Contender Garry Everett with a variety of lighting and composition options at the same location, as seen in two of his three submissions

This Article Features Photo Zoom
Clouded Water

Location: Big Alkali Lake, California

When did you take this photograph? July 19, 2012

Canon EOS 5D Mk II, Canon 24-105mm f/4L IS EF USM AF lens, Circle Polarizer

Describe how you got this photo.
I took Clouded Water about 30 minutes after the photograph Sierra Storm. I was making my way back to the car when the breeze died down and I noticed the clouds and reflections on the lake would make for a great composition. I added a circle polarizer and took a few shots with different foreground and framing. This photo does consciously break the rules with positioning the horizon in the middle with no real foreground, but the simplicity of the shot with the clouds and contrasting blue sky and the near perfect reflection made for a compelling composition.

Did you use any special techniques?
I added the polarizer to give the clouds a little more pop and under exposed the shot by 2/3 of a stop.

Why is this scene of American Landscape special to you?
The Eastern Sierra's is one of my favorite areas due to its proximity to my home in Sacramento and the diverse beauty of this area. You can travel back in time to a yesteryear at Bodie ghost town, spend time among the earth's oldest inhabitants at the Bristlecone Pine forest, visit any number of pristine alpine lakes, take in the scenery and waterfalls of Yosemite National Park, or drive around 100 miles that will take you from the highest point on mainland USA (Mt. Whitney) to the lowest point in Death Valley, just to name a few. This type of diversity is a photographer's dream and lets one use all their skills and imagination to capture and convey this area's inspiring scenery and beauty.

Mountain Painting

Location: Edith Creek, Mount Rainier, WA

When did you take this photograph? September 30, 2012

Canon EOS 5D Mk II, Canon 24-105mm f/4L IS EF USM AF lens, Manfrotto Tripod, 2 stop Graduated ND Filter

Describe how you got this photo.
My wife and I spent the last two days at Paradise Lodge in Mt Rainier before it closed for the winter and on arrival was somewhat disappointed to find the road to Reflection Lake closed as I wanted to shoot a sunrise from that area. I did have the option to hike the 2 miles or so before sunrise to the lake but because of the numerous bears we had seen in that area we thought better of it and decided to do a short hike from our lodge to Edith Creek. The final composition used a gradated ND filter to hold the high cloud color and positioned the creek in the foreground. These elements along with the fall color of huckleberry bushes completed the composition. The final photo looked a little more like a painting than a photograph hence the title.

Did you use any special techniques?

I used a 2 stop graduated ND filter to hold the cloud color and underexposed the shot by 2/3 of a stop to emphasis the colors and add a little contrast.

Why is this scene of the American Landscape special to you?
While it was my first time to Mount Rainier, the designation of this area as a National Park holds a significant place for me as one of my goals is to visit all the National Parks. I think my personal count is now 36 out of 59 parks. While these parks form a small part of the country's overall area, they have a very significant place in photography of the America Landscape.

Do the photos you entered go together to tell a story, or do you think they work best individually? If together, what story about the American Landscape do the photos tell?
While these three photos were taken to stand alone and depict a true rendition of the scene in front of the camera, two of these photos (Clouded Water and Sierra Storm) were taken approximately 30 minutes apart and you probably would not be able to tell this by simply looking these photos together. This provides some insight on how the conditions can change over a relatively small time period. Also, with slightly different composition and lighting a photographer can create two very different images from the same scene.


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