Ode To The Old Man Of Shenandoah

This was always a go to location for Ed and I to stop when we went to Shenandoah National Park. We would call it the " Old Man" or " Gnarly Tree". Sadly, it is no longer with us. The last time we went, it was gone, felled by lightning or simply old age. I light painted it with my maglight.

What technical feedback would you like if any?

What artistic feedback would you like if any?

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

(If this is a composite, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)
Canon 5D MKll, EF 17-40L @26mm, 66sec @ f/16, ISO 400

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You captured a wonderfully moody and mysterious scene here. I like what the long exposure has done to the clouds and the light painting of the tree works very well and enhances the mood. Of course the moon is a wonderful element also. It is a shame about the tree as the one I have with the sunstar is one of my favorites from Shenandoah. Wonderful image.


Very cool! I agree with Ed with the moody and mysterious look here. I’m actually kinda surprised the moon looks as good as it does - given the very long exposure.

I really like that even though the tree/limbs are quite sparse - I like that you’ve pretty much filled the frame. The light painting works very well here - although kind of spotty? - but I that’s an asset really rather than a detraction.

The only small suggestion I have would be a minor crop. Up top, I would crop just enough to crop in to the lone branch that is just clear of the edge. Basically, all the other branches extend thru the edge, and just this one is just so close it draws my attention (now that’s nit picky!) And then maybe a slight crop off the bottom - say half way between the bottom edge and the dark knob. The ONLY reason I’m thinking is that there is quite a lot of dark space. Of course cropping so little is almost pointless…


As an ode to the tree this works well! Always sad when a nice dramatric one falls down in the end. I like the suggestions from @Lon_Overacker , cropping such that the 2 branches also extend through the edge. I find it difficult to decide where to crop at the lower part, but there is a lot of black in the image and I would play with cropping from the bottom to see how it looks. The dynamics in the sky and touches of blue there (and the moonbetween the branches!) are more appealing to me.

This image has a tremendous other-worldly feeling to it. Great job on the light painting, that tree has just the right amount of luminosity and warm tones. I think the moon looks this way due to some high thin clouds, they have created an interesting diffusion around the moon.

I agree with Lon about cropping in on the branch in the URC. I would also consider pulling down the yellow highlights along the right edge of the frame, to make its luminosity slightly lower.

Very artistic! The light painting is a nice complement to the scene, and I love your comp. I too would drop the luminosity of those brighter areas so they don’t compete as much with the tree and the moon.