Alpine Gardens

Hi All,
I captured this image in the Sierra earlier this summer. I was holed up in my tent during an extended afternoon thunderstorm that continued on into the early evening. Shortly before sunset the rain dissipated and I hustled out to find some compositions. Fortunately it was windless and I was able to focus stack these wild onion blooms without to much difficulty at a rather long exposure (10 sec.) I’ve had some struggles with taming the intense red cast in the raws without losing the warm light. I’d greatly appreciate feedback on processing as I just can’t seem to get this file to my liking. Thanks, Dave


Hi Dave - What a beautiful scene! I really like the pink flowers in the foreground and think the rest of the composition works nicely. I noticed two things in terms of processing. First, I might like to see a little more detail and brightness in the trees on the right. I know they are in shadow but I think they might blend together a bit much. Second, the colors in the sky on the right look a little unnatural to me (for example, it looks like there is some cyan in the more yellow part of the cloud and the darker stormy part also looks a little greenish on my monitor). The red cast that you mention didn’t catch my eye as an issue.

Thank you, Sarah. Great food for thought. Appreciate the thoughtful critique.

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I do not see any problem with the reds in the scene, Dave. I do agree with Sarah on the small tweaks with the trees and the small section of the cloud. This scene is well worth spending a little more time on IMO.

Beautiful Alpine scene Dave! Love the near/far comp with the delicate flowers right up front.

Sky looks pretty good to me, no real issues there. Interestingly, my initial impression I was drawn to the rocky mountain. Not because of the red (not bad really,) but because I couldn’t tell if this was after glow, or if there was any direct light? It seems more likely it’s just after sunset, but it’s like I’m looking for more yellow, last light kinda color… hard to describe. In the end, I think you did well to process and present given the intensities in the scene.


Beautiful scene, but I am finding the colors in the sky look over-saturated and wonky, somewhat in the blues and definitely in the reds. Colors throughout the rest of the image look spot on to me. Sweet Sierra scene!

The composition is real nice, Dave. I love the color on the peaks and nice detail in the foreground.

I do agree with Harley’s thoughts about the sky, especially the saturation of the blue and the patch on the right.

Overall, it’s a fine Sierra scene.

This image just doesn’t have the natural beauty of “Steel Blue”. Perhaps over processed. Gotta go with what nature provides sometimes,