I was done shooting closeups of redwoods and heading back when I hit a real thick fog bank. Everything took place in minutes. I had perfect conditions: thick fog and light at a low angle trying to break through. I made two decent images and this was one of them.
The very top of the image has some blur in it. I’m assuming that this was due to some movement for this was a 4 second exposure. But since the image is about softness I don’t find this to be too detrimental.
I like the overall mood to this image. What do you think? There is a calm and gentleness about it and also hope. A benignness.
This is a wonderful image with classic beauty! The horizontal framing of the strong vertical trunks lets me move through the trees and into the mysteriously vignetted world beyond. The tonalities are gorgeous, with just enough detail in the trees, and then I discover the God beams and subtle side light on the large tree! I love the off-center bright area balanced by (or balancing) the large tree. The slight softness in those top branches is easily read as some movement and is not a distraction for me. I love that the two smaller trees on the left don’t exit the frame at the bottom, making them a part of the BG and leaving the main trunk right there where I can reach out and touch it.
Hi Igor, really nice atmosphere and scene overall here. I just feel like the tree on the right side that is closest to the camera feels a little too dominating. I would try to decrease the contrast on it and make it feel more hazy and potentially increase the contrast slightly on the smaller tree on the left that counter balances it. That tree on the right being the biggest as well as the darkest is just a little too jarring to be able to enjoy the rest of the scene as much as I would like.
Wonderful mood at atmosphere in this image. A calmness, softness to it, but also I get a sense of light and airy - which is counter to the mist… but the mood is more of a 'lift-me-up" airiness that I’m sensing.
Oh, and then that’s just the first impression. It takes a little orientation, but then finally the direct light comes in to view, adding another dimension and uplifting spirit to this. Even the subtle rays streaking in front of the main tree. All beautiful.
Only minor nit/wish - was wishing the lower skinny branch wasn’t there. But that’s quite minor.
I made the suggested change but it’s really not working for me. It’s not that I don’t like how the big tree now looks. It’s just unnatural that something closer should be more faded than something farther. I suppose one could ignore that and just enjoy the aesthetics but I can’t seem to be able to ignore that incongruity.
This does speak to gentleness and calm. The main tree on the right feels as if it is reaching out to the smaller trees, the grandfather reaching out to his descendants. The atmosphere is perfect, with that faint tinge of warmth coming in from the upper right. The scene could have felt rather static, except you included that small leaning tree - it adds just that slight amount of tension.
Technically, the visual balance feels fine to me. The grandfather tree is dark and close to the edge of the frame, but the remainder of the scene balances it. I couldn’t discern any softness at the top. If there is, it is irrelevant.
Oh my, that lower branch totally makes a story for me - the grandfather tree reaching out. It’s so interesting how we all see things differently.
A superb image Igor. It has an ethereal quality to it that just pulls you in. I am most fascinated by the tree in the very background as it just pokes through, heck I love the light on the foreground tree as well. I would not change a thing, anything at all.
While I don’t think this looks unnatural at all, I was hesitant to suggest that you adjust the farther tree in order to make it stand out because of what you mentioned. If pushed too far it could look strange as it wouldn’t make sense, but I think here it still looks fine. To me the larger tree just draws less attention now since it is equally hazy. I do agree with @Matt_Payne that dodging that left tree to add some light on it and draw more attention to it could help too!
Ideally this would have been addressed in the field, by scooting further back and zooming in more in order to minimize the foreground tree in comparison to the others. A foreground anchor tree that is too large in size in comparison to the other trees can become very jarring for the visual flow of the scene. Now I am just trying to think of ways that you can mitigate that disruption to the visual flow in post-processing. All things considered though I do think it’s a nice image.
Thank you for your perspective on this Eric. I do see where you’re coming from. You would prefer that everything be as in the background, vague forms shapes in the fog. I chose to overlap that with stronger forms through which the others appear. Actually the subject presented itself this way and I incorporated it. As far as stepping back and zooming in. There were many reasons that was impossible: (1) a highway at my back (2) there was vegetation in front which required a full extension of the tripod to get over it (some had to be cloned out).
Could this have been done better? I’m sure it could. I’m not sold on those two leaning trees but if you’re going to include the big tree then the leaning trees are better than without them. Besides providing near and far perspective the purpose of the big tree are those branches which I felt added to the composition.
I actually prefer the original image. If I were to make the tree lighter I would do so to the entire image. It’s something I’ve tried but still prefer it at this level as the mood really changes when I do so.
Very, very late on this Igor as I’ve been out of town for almost a month but I had to comment on this one. The atmosphere is sublime. It’s rare that you get thick fog with muted sunbeams and also, a touch of warm light hitting various twigs and branches. This shows great harmony. Besides the terrific and obvious atmosphere, this image is about the larger foreground tree on the right and the two smaller trees on the left connecting. I see the larger tree reaching out with that lower branch, looking much like a hand, to the smaller trees and letting them know that I’ll always be here for you. The two trees are huddled together like kids that have done something wrong and getting reassurance from a parent, that everything is alright.
It’s also a visual delight to have the one small tree angled into the other. It breaks up all the vertical tension you tend to get in the redwoods. That along with those horizontal arms of the larger tree really connect the two main subjects here. This is so well crafted. A great image.
David, during your absence the Landscape Gallery got split into two. There is now an Abstract Gallery which you might enjoy visiting. We have several members that specialize in this type of imagery and are really quite good.
Igor, I just love this image. In invokes a calm and serene feeling. And as others have mentioned, then you notice those beams of light horizontally in front of the closest tree and it just brings a smile to the face. Also, I do prefer your original to the altered one.
Thanks for pointing me in that direction Igor. I just saw @Lon_Overacker image of the juniper tree.
Thank you @Lon Overacker for the Editors Pick. I guess @David Haynes was gone for a month and I managed to sneak in. Just kidding. That’s funny. I know you were kidding.