Matej Mlakar (a hobbyist photographer who always carries his Nikon D7200 in his backpack) received a finalist award in the "Colors of Spring" photo contest with the photo "Sunset at Lepena valley in Slovenia". Here is something we can learn from matejmlakar about the techniques and story behind this awarded photo. If you are looking for destinations to photograph in Slovenia, you should visit the Lepena Valley.

Anything worth sharing about lighting?

I have another shot on my hard drive, which was taken around 30 minutes sooner where the peaks are still catching the light. But I decided I like this one more, where the light is softer and the sky compliments the whole image a bit more and adds to the moody feeling.

What equipment did you use?

I used my Nikon D7200 body, Tokina 11-20, Tripod, and a CPL filter. I took a few shots for focus stacking and one for the sky.

What inspired you to take this photo?

I'm quite a frequent visitor to this area, so I feel that I have a feeling of when I can expect something good around here. A good friend of mine, Nino Frelih shoot this exact composition one year ago and I also decided to give it a go when the flowers will be blooming again. We had rain during the day, but towards the evening, the sky became clear, which is always a good sign for a nice sunset, so I went for it. And it was worth it.

Did you do any post-processing? 

A bit yes - I use some tips I learned from Ryan Dyar, Nick Page, Chip Phillips, and other photographers I follow and are a big inspiration to me.

What equipment do you normally have in your bag?

I have Nikon D7200 body, Tokina 11-20mm f2.8, Nikon 35mm 1.8 and a Sigma 50-150mm 2.8.

Also a tripod, CPL, and ND1000 filter.

Any advice for others trying to capture something similar?

Just go out and shoot. And go visit locations more than once.

Visit matejmlakar profile to see more inspiring photography.