I love to photograph in the fall—colorful foliage, beautiful light (with the sun at a lower angle) and usually pleasantly crisp temperatures. What’s not to like? When planning a fall trip, it’s important to go at the right time. There are various websites that track color changes, and they often supply dates for prime color in previous years. I usually plan on going slightly past the predicted height of color. I don’t want to arrive early and find lots of green, and if I’m late for the color—that’s fine with me!
One approach to interpreting fall color would involve having strongly saturated colors throughout the image. This can be pretty impressive—initially. I find many people in my digital printing workshops go overboard with saturation. It almost takes a class “intervention” to convince some that less saturation might be more effective. I compare it to a song on the radio that you hear and immediately love. But, hearing that song repeatedly may cause one to come to despise it. Aggressive images with bold saturation can be seductive. But will they still feel that way after a month? Late season fall images allow for more localized color, and perhaps less tendency to overdo the saturation.
Charles Cramer‘s prints are available through fine photographic galleries like the Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite. He teaches digital imaging for the Ansel Adams Gallery Workshops, John Sexton Workshops and his own program. He has been profiled in many magazines, from Sweden, to the UK, the U.S. and China. He’s also included in the books “Landscape: The World’s Top Photographers” and “First Light: Five Photographers Explore Yosemite’s Wilderness.” His work can be seen at charlescramer.com.