Shoot The Moon Assignment Winner Nitin Kansal

Through Arch - Mountain And Moon by Nitin Kansal
Through Arch - Mountain And Moon by Nitin Kansal
Photographer: Nitin Kansal
"I took a week off for a road trip from Seattle to Death Valley in April, 2012. Alabama Hills was on my list of places to visit. I planned to stay at Lone Pine on the way going and coming back from Death Valley. The key for me was to visit this location multiple times especially because this was my first visit. My first attempt at sunset did not go that well as it was hard to find this arch even though I had maps and guides with me. The next morning I woke up early to keep a buffer and head out. This morning I reached the location on time but the light was not great and there were no clouds.

"On the way back from Death Valley, I visited this place again at sunrise. This time the clouds were moving in towards Mt. Whitney. To my surprise, the moon was also visible on right side, shining above Mt. Whitney. I had pre-visualized the clouds with the alpine glow but not the moon. I was in the right place at the right time. I looked for composition first shooting handheld. Once I found the composition I was happy with, I attached my remote shutter cord, mounted my camera on the tripod and waited for sunrise. The light started liting up clouds and Mt Whitney. I started taking a bunch of images. I made sure my histogram was looking fine and everything was tack sharp. I manually focus at hyper-focal distance to obtain maximum DOF. To find the right hyper-focal distance, I used the DOF calculator for my iPhone.

"This was the only sunrise where I got good light during my entire 10 day trip and I was very happy with the images I got."

Equipment: Nikon D800, Nikon AF-S 16-35mm f/4 VR II,  shutter release cable,  Singh Ray LB Neutral Circular Polarizer, Gitzo tripod, Acra-Tech ball head and Acra-Tech Universal L-bracket

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