Morning Fog

After a cold night shooting the Milky way over Mt St Helens, morning fog formed in the distance over Spirit Lake and began to spill through the hills surrounding it. So I took out the telephoto and waited for the sun to light up the peaks sticking out of the fog.

What artistic feedback would you like if any?

any critique and feedback is welcome

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

NIKON D750 Nikkor 70-300mm
300mm, ISO:100, 1/30s, f/11

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Just from this image (and description,) the experience watching the conditions and light unfold won’t soon be forgotten. Great job using the long lens to isolate this a bit.

As presented this works beautifully. I could see burning down the far ridge - but not so much it becomes unnatural. Clearly you’ve included enough of the “above the fog” ridge in the background and it works well to contain the composition and tell the story.

I do think alternatively - and I’m betting you have other frames, of just showcasing the ridges and peaks in the bottom 2/3. there’s some great light and atmosphere going on even without the fully lit mountains up top.

In the large view, I especially like and appreciate the foreground peak - it really shows the barren, yet recovering landscape post eruption. (I’m going to assume this area was in the path?) I thin the lower right quadrant is a story by itself; the light hitting the peaks 2 ridges up is just icing on the cake.

Not nits or other suggestions. Well seen, captured and processed.



Great conditions and fine take on it. My thoughts echo Lon’s. I would prefer cropping out the bright back peaks, but it would be good to also burn that area and see how it looks. The star of the show for me is the fog shrouded area and I would maximize the emphasis of that in the image.


Michael, these are spectacular conditions, you were very lucky to experience this. I like the composition a lot, the alternating ridge-lines and fingers of fog create a wonderful sense of depth. I also like the exposure/contrast processing of the bottom 3/4 of the image. But I agree with @Harley_Goldman, the bright ridge line in the background seems out of place with the rest of the image. I want my eye to focus on the triangular sunlit peak in the center, but my eye keeps getting pulled away to the bright mountain at the top of the frame.

My preference would be to burn it down instead of cropping it away, I like having the amount of space that you already do above the triangular peak. I might also consider burning it and cooling it down, that way the only warm areas are the sunlit mountains and fog below.

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Gorgeous light and atmosphere and Really well captured and developed. I’m really enjoying looking at this. I’ll agree with the others that the light upper portion of the frame could come down a notch in brightness. If it were my shot I’d probably bring down the brightest area of fog a bit too…maybe with a lights luminosity mask on a curves layer. I like the illuminated hillside at the top of the frame…but I wonder if it would add more mystery and make the sunlit pyramid more of a focus if it was cropped just a touch above the fog line?

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Is is a splendid scene, extremely evocative. I do agree with the other comments that the upper portion is too bright and, in my opinion, it distracts from the magics of the lower part of the frame. I would go for a quasi-panorama scene cropping away just at (or slight below or slight above, to be seen) the fog line…

Michael, beautiful. I read Lon’s comment and I can see that image but I really like the crop as is. I think part of the appeal of this image to me is the distant cliff lit up by the sun… almost like a balance to the darker and cooler foreground.