Black and White Yosemite High Country

Here is another photo from my archive of photos from 11 years ago back when (sigh…) I was backpacking, taken with a Canon Rebel XT. I’d love your opinion on: is the blue part of the sky too dark, is the image over sharpened, is the overall contrast too much, too little? Any other suggestions welcome. ISO 200 17 mm lens (crop factor 1.4), f/14, 1/40 sec, hand held

XT did great, everything looks good. Maybe a little less contrast, the sky reminds me of infrared imaging. You are the best judge.

Beautifully composed, Tony. The clouds add nice depth and visual interest. I’m no expert in BW processing but the blacks look a little weak and the white point just a bit too bright. Hopefully that makes sense.

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Indeed a most beautiful High county alpine landscape. Couldn’t even venture a guess since I’m not quite the Yosemite back country expert. But no matter, this is a grand view.

I’m good with the “blues” - in fact more towards some of the classic b&w looks - if you know who I’m thinking of…

I’m a bit with Dave. To me, the meadow and opposing tree lined granite slopes are lacking a little contrast, I think. Unlike the sky. One thing that will mention, and unsure how to address at the moment, is to somehow separate a bit more the granite peaks in the center with the adjacent clouds. Might be problematic given the tonal values are so close.

Which leads me to ask, what’s the color version like? Just wondering if the browner granite in the peaks might separate? Certainly not a bad call on the b&w, just curious on the color.


@Dave_Dillemuth and @Lon_Overacker hit the main points that jumped out at me. The landscape itself feels to be lacking contrast. Love the sky, though!

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Nice shot Tony, what a wonderful scene. Makes me want to visit :smile:

I agree with those saying the contrast is a bit too low in the landscape. I have a hard time differentiating between the clouds and the furthest mountains. Also, there’s a band around 2/3 from the left, at the top, looks like you may have a layer mask that is smaller than the image.

Thanks for all the suggestions! I reworked the photo: made the furthest mountains stand out more against the clouds, increased the contrast in the land (not the sky) and made the darks darker, and got rid of the mask artifact. Thanks again. I think it is much improved thanks to all the suggestions



Excellent, excellent job on the rework. Especially in separating the peaks from the clouds. This looks fantastic!


I think your reworking is excellent, Tony. And this is beautifully composed with the curvature of the stream leading the eye in and the slightly off centre dip in the mid-distant hills. Great sky as well !

Tony, I love the composition and you processing of the blues in the sky. I think your rework has made a substantial improvement in the image, especially in separating the mountains from the sky. Starting from your rework, I would also suggest some further burning of the flat land between the creek and the base of the mountain. I think this would help better separate the right mountain from the valley meadow (on the left side this is already achieved by the strong row of dark trees). but overall this rework has taken this image up a notch.

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Repost is a big improvement. I agree with the thoughts of the others on the original. I like Ed’s idea of burning too. Nice high country scene. Reminds me of the days I could still backpack (the old back says no mas).

Thanks again for all the feedback. I reworked this photo again, from scratch. This version is a bit different in contrast, sky darkening and midtones. I also gave it a slight warming, mostly in the highlights. I’d love your opinions on this version compared to the redo above.