Lake Abert, Oregon High Desert

Shot in early December at Lake Abert on the Oregon High Desert just prior to a large mid-winter storm.

Specific Feedback Requested

I am hoping for some help in making this pop a bit more and am always open to composition tips. Perhaps there is too much sage in the bottom.

Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
Canon R5 at ISO 400 using a Canon 14-24mm L series lens on a Gitzo tripod. Early morning light. Processed in Photoshop and NIK software.


Deigh, welcome to NPN. What a fantastic shot to start out with. That sky is to die for. I’ve never been to Lake Abert, but clearly, I need to make the trip. I can’t think of anything I would change. I’m just sitting here admiring the larger image. Well done!

Thanks so much for your kind response. It is a wonderful place to visit especially in the autumn and winter.

Welcome to NPN, Deigh. This is a pretty impressive scene, particularly for your first post. This needs to be scene in the large version to get the full impact. You were fortunate to get great weather conditions. The white dry lake together with those dark shadows is very impactful. I’m somewhat familiar with this lake. I believe the road follows the bluffs on the right as I recall. Can’t think of ways to improve this. The dry lake and everything below has a sort of yellow/green cast. You could move it towards magenta just a tad maybe.

Hello Deigh and welcome aboard. This is certainly an eye-catcher for sure. Such a grand scene. Really epic. I find the clouds a bit heavy-handed for my taste, but those differ. I’d ease up on the shadows up there and see how you like it. I haven’t spent a lot of time in Oregon, but this looks like a place I should see in person. Thanks for sharing and joining us here on NPN. Don’t hesitate to post more and take part in the conversations you see going.

I did as you suggested - very minor - but I think it helped. Thanks for the thoughtful comment.

Beautiful shot Deigh! I love the layers and those clouds are spectacular. There are a few dust spots I’m noticing and one strange artifact in the blue on the left side. I like Igore’s suggestion of increasing the tint in the foreground a bit :sunglasses:

Wonderful scene, Deigh – welcome to NPN! It’s not a very useful suggestion because it isn’t practical to implement, but a slightly higher point of view in a scene like this is often good. But it’s basically limited to drones. Or maybe the Ansel Adams platform on top of a vehicle.

On quick look I only notice one dust spot, just above the darker clouds near the left, and its size suggests it is on the back element of the lens.

Very striking image Deigh. Welcome to NPN! Wonderful first post.


Welcome to NPN! A grand first post to be sure.

I don’t think there’s too much sage at the bottom - for me, it balances, and is weighted just right with the dramatic sky.

As much as I like the drama in the sky/clouds, I think maybe the blue maybe a bit strong? Maybe not so much in saturation - I love a blue sky!, but perhaps in the darkness, relative to the clouds.

The strong light is dictating the contrast, and so with that I think you’ve processed this quite well.

The only other suggestion I have… Have you considered B&W? Given the contrast in the clouds and the playa, this could work well. Just a thought.

Welcome aboard! We look forward to your images and participation.


What a great image, I also really love that sky! I also love the light on the lake in the mid ground and the sage brushes are just right in my opinion.

Welcome to NPN and I look forward to seeing more of your work.