Clue d'Aiglun

I’ve been 3 times to the Alpes Maritimes, the mountains in the south of France near the Mediterranean Sea. Round November 1st the autumn is at its best there, great time to hike a few days and usually my daughter comes with me as a bonus.
There are several narrow canyons or gorges, called “clue” in the local dialect. This one is the Clue d’Aiglun. A narrow road with a lot of hairpins crosses the stream (a road where I, as a flatlander, always hope not to meet a car from the opposite side) and I made this image standing on the small bridge.

Specific Feedback Requested

Any. Contrast & color, lines, crop…

Technical Details

Pentax K5, Pentax 4/16-45mm @16mm, composite of 4 horizontal images.
ISO200, f/10, 1/100sec, handheld.
RAW conversion in DxO PL, panorama in Photoshop.


That is a yawning chasm, Hans. You pulled off the difficult panorama very well. As it is a pano, I might crop a little off the left side. Your colours, as always, are stunning. Do you find the Pentax equipment so good for colour (I have just bought a K-5) - or is it more the result of your processing?

Thank you @Mike_Friel .
W.r.t colours: I do like Pentax and Olympus, indeed. I shoot the vast majority of my images with AWB and adjust if necessary, but in general I like the starting point.
But my choice for Pentax is rooted in the past: in analog times I used a Pentax LX and MX, and I skipped the analog autofocus period. In the digital era, I can still use old Pentax glass if I want, therefore my first DSLR was Pentax again. According to reviews, at the release date the Pentax K10D and K5 were probably the best APS-C cameras available (w.r.t. image quality, but with poor continuous AF), so there was no reason to go to Canon or Nikon at that time. I’m not a frequent action photographer, so the AF was of less importance to me. I have several old fast prime lenses, 14, 35, 50, 85, 135mm, a 100mm macro, that I still use sometimes. The colour rendition of these old lenses is different. I use a dedicated and easily made DCP profile for these lenses, but for the more recent glass I usually rely on the colour profiles for the camera body in DxO Photolab.
Well, DSLR’s are becoming obsolete apparently, so if I ever desire to switch to mirrorless I’ll have to start all over again :wink:

Thanks very much for this, @Han_Schutten . I have an old SMC Pentax-M 50mm f1.7 lens and I’d noticed the colour of my shots was not that close to what I’d observed in reality. I guess I can add a DCP profile as you did. I’ll check out the Pentax Forums to find out more. This is a great help.I want to try and approach your level of colour rendition!

You’re welcome, @Mike_Friel .
If you don’t have a ColorChecker test chart, I can give you my DCP profile for the M 50mm f/1.7. I own one myself. I won’t change the world, but there are subtle changes in colour.
The best thing to do is to make the profile with your copy of the K5 and the 50mm, but the differences will be small, if any.

Such a sweeping view from the top to the bottom. The colors, as you discuss with Mike, are really intense, but realistic. All but the sky IMO, which appears a bit overdone here. My eyes keep wandering up there when I know you don’t want them to. The overall palette reminds me of Yosemite and Zion here in the US. Given the lighting conditions, I wonder if the shadows are lifted a bit too much here. Tough to judge since I wasn’t standing beside you, although I certainly wish I was. Are there cedar trees in the scene? It looks like on the upper cliffs some may be changing color. Really gorgeous.

You are probably right about the sky @Kris_Smith . I masked the sky to increase contrast a bit, but I probably went too far. The sky was pretty veiled, and I wanted to bring out the clouds some more. No problem to desaturate the blue.
I think the shadows are not too bad, the same veiled sky prevents harsh shadows.
The coniphers in the image are probably all spruce trees, so no color changes in autumn. There are places with larches, the best coniphers there are in autumn, but very few in this region. I remember that one of the first images I posted for this community is a scene with larches and blueberry plants. Maybe 50 miles from Aiglun.

Glad you like the image.