A Tree's Last Dance

I’ve revisited this 2016 image over the years trying to find the essence of what drew me to take the shot. I think I finally got what I was seeing.

Specific Feedback Requested

Any comments appreciated. Does the Lenswork brown toning work?

Technical Details

35mm, 1/125 sec @ f/11, ISO 320. Cropped square from the bottom.


Well that certainly is expressive, David. That’s what drew me into looking at this image. That curving trunk, and those branches, devoid of leaves make this tree stand out. You had wonderful light and an equally expressive sky. In fact, the tree and the clouds appear to be dancing together. I can certainly see why you chose to convert to Black and white. The contrast is great here. You might want to vignette the bottom of the frame, particularly the RBC where that one long cloud is fairly bright. A very minor nit and I don’t see anything else.

David, whatever rework you’ve done seems just fine from my perspective. I like the angle of view as well as the B&W processing in general. It does look as though this tree is well beyond just being seasonally dormant and missing foliage on the branches. With that said it adds to the moody look and the main thoughts on going B&W here… :+1:

I like the tonal work. The contrast seems just right, enough to convey a sense of intensity without going overboard. For me I see a tree communicating with the sky–I wonder what about?

This is really good, David. It’s reaching for the sky. It’s stretching for the sky. I wonder if a little more sky above the tree would help convey the idea. I agree that it’s a very expressive and even dramatic image.

I love the lighting on this tree. The tree already has so much character and it’s like the light is putting the dancing tree in the spotlight. It goes well against the dark, kind of stormy looking sky. I love your title too, even though it makes me sad for the tree. It
makes me see the joy of the moment expressed in the limbs of the tree to get the most out of that last dance…

This looks great, David, and dancing does feel like an appropriate description. I’m thoroughly enjoying how the tree fills the frame and how the cloud textures gently mimic the feeling of the tree.

@David_Haynes, @Paul_Breitkreuz, @DeanRoyer, @Vanessa_Hill, @Mark_Seaver thank you for the kind comments. I really appreciate them.

David, I’ll hit that RBC with a bit of burning. Thanks.

Igor, thank you for your comments. I guess I could add a bit of sky at the top with Content Aware cropping…it makes sense from a composition perspective. I wish I had allowed more room in the original frame when I took the image. Always learning, eh? :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

AS you may have noticed I’m a big fan of revisiting images! :smile: I love the light here and the form of the tree and it’s limbs. I also like how it stands out from the simple but effective background. The brown tone is really lovely too. I may have to “steal” that for some of my images. What tool(s) did you use to create the brown tone if I may ask?

1 Like

Hi Tom, I converted the image to B&W then used the Split Tone tool to set the highlights color to 39 and saturation to 2. Same settings for the Shadows.

Best, David

1 Like

Thanks David. I always struggle to get my warm tones looking right and yours looked just perfect. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Love this shot and how it pulls my eye. It inspired me to post one of my lone dead trees.
Thanks so much

Hi David
The clouds look ominous but the tree looks like it has endured many storms, yet it continues to stand strong.
Eventually it will succumb but for now, it is refusing to give itself back to the dirt in which it grew, kind of like people refusing to give up no matter how old they are, no more leaves and no more seeds to give but it’s not done yet.

The image is very well presented and the tonal ranges help the story IMHO :slight_smile:

Ruggedly gorgeous!! I do think a bit more room on top would be great, and easy to do.

I LOVE the “Lenswork” toning!!

David, I love this image. Definitely see why you chose to revisit. The perspective and the starkness of the branches makes for such a menacing and dramatic image. No nits from me.

@Steve_Rosendahl, @Merv, @Diane_Miller, and @David_Mullin thanks for your comments. They’re truly appreciated.

Steve, thanks, I saw your tree post and it is awesome.

Merv, I love your description. Can I use it as my caption/description for the tree? Credited to you of course. :slightly_smiling_face:

Diane, I will definitely make more room at the top. Thanks.

David M. Thank you. Much appreciated.

Hi David,

I’m glad you like my take on the presence and story of this tree.
You are welcome to use any part of what I wrote and use it as you wish.
The tree holds the rights to the story, I merely narrated. :slight_smile:
Credits to me aren’t necessary but you can do that if you prefer, it’s up to you.

I still like the image and the tree :slight_smile:

1 Like