Shhhh, don't tell anyone, but the day's best light is often 20 to 30 minutes after sunset. Great color and even tones make this a great time to shoot.
I was on my way home from a winter shoot in Yosemite when I made a quick detour up to Tunnel View. An absolutely breathtaking view, Yosemite's Tunnel View is frustratingly devoid of interesting foreground elements--I often resort to telephoto shots here to create something unique. But when there's snow on the trees and mist in the valley, the foreground comes alive. In those situations I often try to emphasize the foreground with a vertical composition.
Here I moved around until I found a snow-covered manzanita shrub to anchor the foreground. This was nearly 30 minutes after sunset, hence the 6-second exposure. But the light was so even throughout the scene, exposure was a piece of cake. (This cake metaphor really works, as the frosting-pink sky and snowy-white glaze remind me of a delicious confection.)
* Website: Eloquent Images
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