Pentax K-1, f6.3, 1/160, ISO 400
This image began years before I captured it. I had long admired traditional Chinese landscape paintings, which often used layers of landscape such as mountain ridges to help achieve the illusion of three-dimensional depth. These paintings had influenced my landscape photography style. For years I did not realize that many of these fantastical paintings were based on the Huangshan Mountains in China. These mountains are famous for their steep granite ridges, bonsai-like trees, and cloud formations. So after learning about the Huangshan Mountains, my wife and I traveled there and hiked the steep mountain trails for three days. One evening I went to a ridge-top summit, along with several hundred other people. While most others were focused on the sunset to the west, this scene to the south caught my eye just as the sun’s last rays illuminated the two nearby peaks. Fog swirled around the peaks and down into the thick under cast.