Pentax K-1, f6.3, ISO 400, 1/400 sec, 210 mm
The Huangshan Mountains in China are famous for their steep granite ridges, bonsai-like trees, and cloud formations. On this July morning I rose early to catch the sunrise from one of the ridge tops. Low clouds covered the valley floors to the east, and an overcast created an opening for the rising sun to briefly appear between the layers of clouds. I quickly took a series of photos as the sun rose between the cloud layers, then disappeared into the overcast. I exposed for the bright sun, intentionally turning the receding mountain ridges into abstract shapes. By doing this I was echoing, in a more abstract way, traditional Chinese landscape paintings which often used layers of landscape such as receding mountain ridges to help achieve the illusion of three-dimensional depth. Many of these landscape paintings were inspired by the Huangshan Mountains. These paintings have also influenced my landscape photography.