Grand Canyon Sunrise

Hi All,

Very infrequent landscape poster. But I do enjoy seeing all of your work. Shot this in 2013 during a long road trip out west.

Disclaimer: I am a mediocre, at best, post processor when it comes to landscapes. For this one, I blended two images, one for the sky, and one for the canyon. I used some luminosity masks for the blend and then for some levels/curves adjustments. I also burned and dodged a few areas with luminosity masks. I sharpened with the TK algorithm. All C&C welcome.

16-35 f/4 @ 16mm
ISO 200

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It’s nice to see you post a landscape here. I like this composition and the mood you have with this sky. I do think the foreground and rock face to the right are a bit dark. I would try to raise the blacks and shadows to show more detail and it would also help balance the scene a bit more, it feels heavy on the right side to me. I do not do a lot of blending, but to my eye it looks good.
I am undecided on the little bend of the river peeking out on the left side of the frame. It does offer some interest, but I also find it grabbing my eye a bit much. I am curious what others have to say about it.

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Thanks for posting. This is a great photo. I think the post processing is spot on, except I agree with Alan that the right side should be lightened.

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You could also crop the sides. Both sides are weaker than the center. Such a crop would place greater emphasis on the river, which is the center of focus.

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Stunning image Lyle. Wonderful expansive view. I agree with Alan and Tony about lightening the rocks on the right side.

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Thanks all. It’s funny, I darkened the right side of the image to draw the viewer away from there. But I probably should have attempted that by working with the highlights rather than the darks. Making the darks so heavy did precisely the opposite of my plan. Good learning experience!

Really nice image Lyle, great conditions and the blend looks very seamless and natural to me. The balance in luminosity between sky and landscape is well handled. I love the X shaped, or radial pattern created by the elements within the scene.

I do agree with the others that the right side is too dark in the shadows, this is the rare case where deep shadows near a frame edge are a distraction, usually its highlights near the edge that are the problem. I also think the left side vs. right side landscape tonality could be balanced better by lightening the right, and darkening the left. I also agree with @Igor_Doncov about cropping from the left, I think it would help tighten up the composition. Here is a rework reflecting my comments, I think this draws more attention to the center of the image.


Thanks, Ed. I managed to make a reasonable facsimile of yours! Def. improved!