Saturday, January 16, 2010

Zion National Park

Next stop, rather pause, after Coral Pink State Park was Zion National Park. I had driven thru Zion the year before right at dusk. It was quite dramatic with very low light so I hadn't stopped to make any images. I had that memory in my mind when I drove thru this year. The sun was quite high in the sky, not the greatest time for photography, and very different from the previous year. As such I only made just a couple of images.

This first image is Checkerboard Mesa. I used a HDR technique where 6 exposures, in this case, we made 2/3 stops apart. By doing this you capture the full range of tones from hilites to dark shadows. A program called Photomatics is used to blend the images together and gives the photographer controls for making final adjustments. It's a technique I need to work alot more with to get it right.

I was most intrigued by the sky and clouds that day. It was really a beautiful day with the sun shining brightly and the temperatures quite mild. This tree just stood out so nicely with the sky in the background and the clouds really mimic the shape of the tree.

I was struck by the contrast of the green pine trees against the red rock of this area and made a few images along the road. In deep shadow the tones were contained and with a little digital darkroom adjustments it makes a pleasant image.

Unable to take the scenic drive the previous year, well I could have taken it I just wouldn't have seen anything since it was dark, it was on my agenda this day. It was a nice drive but nothing really captured my fancy except for the trees high on the ridge with the sky and clouds behind it. So another tree, sky and cloud image, sometimes things run in cycles.

I left Zion pleased that I had driven thru. It's another jewel in the jewel box of the Southwest.


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