The Gates of Urizen

The Gates of Urizen

This was taken at one of my last visits to a favorite shooting location in southern NH - Tucker Falls. It was March 2015 and I remember seeing this ice formation and making right for it, straight through knee-deep snow. I love the combination of ice and long exposure because it sets up the contrasts quite effectively. The blue cast here was white-balance error which happens a lot in shady snow, but I quite liked it and tweaked the color a bit to add to the sinister vibe. Oh how I miss Tucker Brook, but darn this was a nice parting gesture.

Specific Feedback Requested

Is it too weird? I’ve played with tighter crops, but like the swirling water and the icicles. The scene is larger so this a crop. Is the blue too pronounced? IRL the water is tannic and there isn’t any color except brown. Tried it as a straight up B&W and it seemed weaker somehow.

Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
Lumix DC-GH3
Lumix G Vario 35-100mm f/2.8 lens @ 59mm (118mm equiv.)
f/14 | 2 seconds | ISO 125
Tripod
Probably a polarizer or ND filter which could have caused the cast

Lr processing to control highlights, add texture & clarity. Local adjustment brush in water and icicles to bring out patterns and contrast. Changed blue cast and reduced green channel. Ps to remove distracting bits of weed under the water that were still visible and clean up the snow above the icicles.

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Kristen, I have no critique. I love the composition. The motion juxtaposition with with ice formation is dynamic. I think the color of the snow is rendered beautifully. Very nice shot!

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Kris, you’ve got a fine balance here between the hanging icicles and the white, moving water below. The colors work well. It’s well known that our brains color correct what we see to fit what we expect. The camera doesn’t do that, it only collects the reflected light, which is why shady scenes especially white ones often have a blue cast due to reflection of the blue sky.

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Kristen, I like the transition of dark to light - bottom to top - leading to the in focus icicles. The smoothing of the water softens the look of the leading colors.

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Thanks everyone. It’s one of my favorite ice images.