View Full Version : Landscape Challenge: Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Julie Brown
07-26-2010, 11:17 PM
For the poll I voted that birds were more difficult to photograph. So here is my entry for the landscape challenge-an image from a workshop in Colorado taken July 7, 2010. For almost the entire 90 minute drive from Gunnison we had rain and dull gray skies. By the time we arrived, the clouds started to open up and we got evening light in the canyon.

Canon 5D MK II, 24-105mm f4L IS (47mm), f16, (1/5sec+1/25sec), ISO 100, 0EV, pattern metering, manual exposure, polarizer, tripod

PP: LR 2.6
Full frame with slight crop from bottom
2-image blend using LR Enfuse plug-in
set black and white points
graduated filter tool for sky
tweaked exposure and color using NIK Viveza 2.0
Sharpener Pro 3.0; Dfine 2.0 for NR

Harshad Barve
07-27-2010, 06:34 AM
Love the light and shadow effect here

Roman Kurywczak
07-27-2010, 08:58 AM
Hey Julie,
Thanks for taking the challenge. You were faced with the first difficulty a landscape photographer faces.......the light. The window of opportunity you got here was quite narrow but dramatic.....the skies are fantastic.....however, you also faced another challenge.....getting interesting things into the FG to add interest. I'm a huge fan of dead trees myself but the shadows along the bottom.....and the color is close to Gunnison canyon....so it blends in a bit.....a bit of selective PP'in there can give it a bit more seperation. Overall, I think you thought the comp out well....the large shadows are playing a bit of havoc with this one.

Dave Mills
07-27-2010, 09:26 AM
Hi Julie, my cousin lives in Gunnison and about 4 years ago I went to the Black canyon. I had strong light and found it a real challenge to get a good image due to the contrasty light playing in the narrow canyon.
As Roman stated the sky is great and very often a gnarled old tree is a good point of interest. Due to the blending quality of the warm light it is causing the tree to lose some of it's impact. Good suggestion that in PP to try and create more separation.
I might tone down or eliminate the bright light on the bush in the lower rt.

Julie Brown
07-27-2010, 02:58 PM
Thank you Harshad, Roman, and Dave for the comments. The Black Canyon is an awesome place, but does provide some lighting challenges!

I can selectively tone down the light on the bush in LR. To create more separation in the foreground elements, should I add more contrast and/or brighten the foliage? As for the large shadows, should I open them up a bit? I think I could do all of this in LR and Viveza. I have CS5 now, but don't know enough to use that yet. I used LR for quick PP, but I need to make time to learn CS5. I would probably have more creative control. I did learn how to blend images in CS5 during my workshop. Thanks for pointing these things out to me.:)

Julie Brown
07-27-2010, 03:29 PM
Here is the image I was going to post originally, but changed my mind because I noticed that there was some blurring of the foliage at the bottom due to a 5-image blend. This one was taken earlier and the shadows are not as deep. Is it more acceptable?

Roman Kurywczak
07-27-2010, 08:31 PM
Hi Julie,
Yes, it does work better for me.....has quite a bit more seperation. You might just try the dodge tool....faded on the darker areas of the tree....may give that final bit of seperation.

Julie Brown
07-27-2010, 10:27 PM
Thanks Roman.

Dave Mills
07-27-2010, 11:38 PM
Hi Julie,It also works better for me. I do see more separation between the tree and the backround with less extremes in the darks and lighter areas. Good job toning down the bush...

Julie Brown
07-28-2010, 08:07 PM
Thanks Dave.