Arenal Volcano

What technical feedback would you like if any? Any

What artistic feedback would you like if any? Color Balance, comp

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

(If this is a composite, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)

This is an older image that I found and went back to apply more modern post processing techniques.
This is from April, 2010 on my old trusty Canon 5D.

At this time the Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica was spewing hot lava rocks on a regular basis. The streaks going down the volcano are hot lava rocks, not molten lava. They bounce down the side of the mountain. From the hotel balcony where I took this image you could hear them. It was a cool experience. I stayed up all night shooting and watching this amazing scene. Not longer after that time, the volcano went into a resting state. Apparently not dormant. I haven’t been back since, I don’t believe it is currently erupting lava rocks. If you know different, I’d love to know.

Thanks for your input on this image.

Canon 5D
17-40 @ f/4
8 minutes

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Keith - this is a fantastic shot. The star trails creating a focal point to the left of the image is a tremendous balance to the powerful volcano. The colors are great. There’s just a bit of noise I’d try to manage in the sky, but beyond that, this is just great. I also like the tree/bush on the LLC to help keep my eye in the frame. I suppose others may see it as a distraction, and I’m sure it could be cloned out, but I kinda like it there.

@Keith_Bauer What an extraordinary event to capt Keith. I’d have loved to see this.

All I would add would be to try to work on the noise in the sky and there appears to be a bit of chromatic aberration or fringing in areas along the silhouette. The comp is simple and effective and the star trails add to the impact of the photo. Nicely done.

Unique and stunning image.

That must indeed have been quite a sight! The lines of the falling rocks are beautiful and unique. Apart from the noise in the sky, I would also clone out the straight line of a non-star (airplane?) in the ulc.
The startrails are a nice combination with the show of the volcano.

I just returned from Cost Rica. I didn’t have a chance to see Arenal though. (We were visiting friends in Monteverde.) I would have guessed lava; fascinating that it is the rocks.

Well done on the mix o the starry sky and the lava flow. I like the gas trailing to the left side too.

This is a really unique volcano image, those falling rocks look amazing at night. Great job of conceiving and executing this image. If this was shot with a 17-40mm lens, hoe close was your hotel to the volcano ?

@Ed_McGuirk - Yes this was my 17-40 @ 40mm. There is a small crop from the bottom but full frame horizontally. The hotel is the Arenal Lodge. I’m going to guess that from my balcony to the Volcano was a few hundred yards. You could easily hear the lava rock bouncing down the side of the volcano.

Wow, Keith. I love everything about this image but that subtle smoke/ash/water vapor trailing from the crater takes it over the top for me. Was there any concern about safety/evacuation at that time?

You are a braver man than I am :grinning:

I don’t want to leave an impression that this was risky. The hotel was built there while the Volcano was active. It hasn’t exploded for a LONG time. The activity for years and years was somewhat predictable, then it went to sleep. They certainly hope it will awaken again with it’s former activity as it was a major tourist attraction. I’m sure they hope it returns, but not violently. Yes the proximity could be very dangerous if there were a major explosion, eruption, but I’m guessing the geologists are confident that won’t happen or the hotel would have never been built where it is. It was a night to remember for sure.

Just fantastic Keith. You capitalized on a wonderful natural event and executed beautifully. Even the wind-blown plume coming out the top adds the image.

Not a biggie, but if printing you might chop down that tree LLC.