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Sweet Light, Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View

Posted by
Gary Hart (California, United States) on 10 April 2009 in Landscape & Rural and Portfolio.

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.)

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Thanks for visiting. Even if I don't respond, your comments are always read and appreciated.

Tracy from La Selva Beach, United States

Stunning Gary! Amazing light for sure! (and thanks for the secret tip). zi've never thought of a landscape in a food related way, but maybe my landscapes would improve if I did :) Delicious!

10 Apr 2009 12:54pm

@Tracy: One woman who has attended many of my workshops also does food photography--she comes up with a food metaphor for every scene we photograph. It's quite unconscious and to me is proof that we all have our own way of seeing the world.

B. Thomas from Arlington, Texas, United States

Wow! Beautiful.

10 Apr 2009 4:23pm

Didier DE ZAN from somewhere, France

Wonderful photograph !! what a beautiful landscape

10 Apr 2009 7:01pm

shoti from Everywhere in the, Philippines

mystical. magical. fantastically captured Gary. Thanks for sharing these inspiring photos and tips.

13 Apr 2009 12:09pm

@shoti: My pleasure, Shoti. I'm glad you enjoy them.