I woke up in mid noon at the Alvord Desert to an incredible sky. I always trust my senses to a vision right after waking up. There just seems to be less second guessing and analysis. I had an immediate strong reaction to the sky and went with it. Quickly rushing to set up the tripod I wanted to catch that opening in the sky before it closed up or changed much. Can’t say why this affected me so much. Perhaps it harked back to the old days in parochial school when pictures such as this were common - usually with Christ in the midst of all that. But mostly it’s just about all those hours laying on your back and staring up at them.
Clouds are notoriously difficult to process in a realistic way due to their dynamic range. I’ve worked on this quite a bit. I am interested in your opinion of how they’ve been rendered.
Igor, this is really a fine image of clouds. Mine never turn out. I like your processing and while I did not see the sky in real time, it certainly feels realistic to me.
I think the composition works quite well too, and the square format. Well done.
I remember the days as a kid when we would lay on our back and Mom or Dad would ask us kids what we saw. We could play the game for an hour before tiring of it. This image reminds me of those days as a kid. The very abstract nature of this reveals only what the viewer can find in his or her mind. I can look at this for a while without tiring of it and although I don’t see rabbits or horses or any of the myriad of farm animals that we used to look for as kids there is so much to take in with this scene.
I think you’ve nailed the processing. The light contrast works really well and it has a very balanced feel to it and I’m thinking this is pretty much what you saw when you took this image. The whites look pretty good to me and I can’t really detect any areas that have that gray washed out feel that you see so often with whites that have been blown out after processing. I love the blue tones here as well. The square crop works well as does the white frame.
I love these images of sky and cloud and even more than that, I love taking them. It is such a meditative process that always takes me deep, deep into a nonordinary sense of connection. This is lovely, Igor. You’ve captured the pale, fractal subtlety. Beautifully seen and processed.
“… And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way…”
~Joni Mitchell - “Both Sides Now”
Am I just showing my age in getting the reference??? And what a fantastic reference, that song still rings in my head on occasion - especially since I find myself being immersed in the clouds so very often. In fact clouds are right up there with mountain streams and ocean surf. Mesmerizing, all of them. I digress… but thanks Igor for the trip…
The image is just wonderful. Processing outstanding especially in “light” of the extreme highlights looking skyward. You’ve handled this beautifully.
Now I’m not sure if it’s the processing, presentation or just my personal impression, but I get the distinct reaction of “humidity.” Like this might be the sky over Houston in the summer when it’s 105 degress out and 95% humidity… of course that could be anywhere. Anyway, great job not only with the cloud capture, but capturing the “atmosphere” as well.
I love good cloud photographs, and this one is sublime. The arc from lower right to upper left is perfect, and the subtle blue coming through is just marvelous.
Love this one.
Nice and simple.
You could start your “Equivalences” series
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Thank you for your comments. I haven’t shot a picture of clouds in probably over a decade. It seems like I often want to but they never form in a way to make a compelling composition. People seem to mostly post those alien looking clouds formed by winds that look so eerie. In this case I was more interested in the implication of that hole in the clouds than a weather phenomenon per se.
I suspect you’re right. It was a rainy day over the mountains next to Alvord but as they drifted over the desert they lost their ‘anger’ and became diaphanous.
I suppose there are many ways to react to clouds. In my case it was more spiritual, more religious rather than dreamy.