Altar of Giants

Moonlit scene in Lassen Volcanic Park. I was originally light painting the scene a bit to fill in the shadows, but I didn’t like those images/edits. Instead, I decided I liked the look of just the moonlight. This is actually a composite of two images. The image with the moonlight that I liked on the foreground rock had the clouds moved in a little more to the right , so I blended in a foreground with a midground/sky from a minute or two earlier.

What technical feedback would you like if any?


What artistic feedback would you like if any?

Any, but curious on impressions on the general feel of the edit and the mood and if the shadows seem right. I have also been desaturating a lot of my night images lately, and am wondering if this level of desaturation seems right. I don’t always like that much wide angle lean on my images, but for this composition it seems right to me.

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

(If this is a composite, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)
A composite, as mentioned above. Also removed a branch in the midground.
Canon 5div, 15mm, f2.8, 20 sec, iso 3200

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Hi Jason,

I’m wondering if you tried a 4:5 aspect ratio cropping off a touch from the bottom? I’d be inclined to show part of the rock and give more attention to the great clouds and the moonlit trees.

I usually prefer something closer to a 4x5, but I had been trying to keep as much of the rock as possible. I just went and looked at a 4x5 and it takes off too much, I think, but a 4x3 leaves enough for me. I’ll sit on it a bit. I think you are right that it could use some trimming off the bottom.

Hi Jason. Interesting concept and composition.
I usually anticipate moonlit scenes being cooler light,so the ground areas seemed inconsistent with the starry sky. In the attachment I shifted all color balance, but you might want to not do that to the sky

Thanks Dick. I guess the foreground was a little warm for moonlight. I’ll have another go at playing with the color balance a bit and see where I land.

Have fun with your creation.

Wonderful how the clouds cradle the tree, and the moonlight and stars are beautiful! My first thought was that the rock is a bit dominant but I don’t see how I would crop it. Maybe darken it (and the ground to its left) a little? Moonlight has the same color temp as daylight but it does look dramatic to cool things down a bit.

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The lighting and stars create a fascinating effect; nicely creative. I like the idea of darkening the brightest part of the rock just a tad, and adding a touch of blue; both would help suggest the moonlit mood even more.

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Thanks everyone for the feedback. It is much appreciated Here is a current version. Still not sure how much I want to crop the rock, since to me it was a big part of the composition, but I have cooled and toned it down a bit and I think it helps with the mood. I might still brighten the rock a little more but will sit with this for a while.