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brandonbowman September 03, 2016
Beautiful textures and tones - well done!

The living desert



The Namib desert seemed to come alive in the afternoon light. The waves on the sand in the foreground perfectly complimented the dunes in the background. I want...
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The Namib desert seemed to come alive in the afternoon light. The waves on the sand in the foreground perfectly complimented the dunes in the background. I wanted to juxtapose the texture of the sand against the wavy contours of the dunes. In my mind the lines and textures demanded a B&W treatment. I hope I have achieved the right balance of highlights and shadows as well as texture - that I found to be the hardest part!
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Contest Finalist in Experimental Underexposure Photo Contest
Peer Award
+57
Superb Composition
+6
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+1
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+1
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Behind The Lens

Location
In the Namib desert, at Sossusvlei, Namibia
Time
Early afternoon, in bright sunlight
Lighting
I was drawn by the shape and form of the dunes, and the texture of the sand... but these features were subdued by the colors and the harsh sunlight. The Namib is famous for its red dunes, and the colors dominated the scene. That's when I decided to deliberately underexpose and process in B&W. The form and texture popped out with this treatment.
Equipment
Canon 5D MkII and Canon EF 24-105 f4L lens. Handheld.
Inspiration
The Namib desert seemed to come alive in the afternoon light. The waves on the sand in the foreground perfectly complimented the dunes in the background. I wanted to juxtapose the texture of the sand against the wavy contours of the dunes. In my mind the lines and textures demanded special treatment...
Editing
After basic adjustments on Lightroom, B&W conversion and further adjustments were made on SilverEfex Pro. I hope I have achieved the right balance of highlights and shadows as well as texture - that I found to be the hardest part.
In my camera bag
Canon 5D MkII + Canon EF 24-105 f4L lens is my "go to" equipment during travel. Also carry a Canon EF 400 mm 5.6 L USM on a Canon 7D body (which effectively gives me 600mm) for birds and wildlife.
Feedback
Have lots of time, plan to spend the entire day when you visit the desert to photograph it in different kinds of light. I would have liked to stay but had to rush back in the afternoon. I missed photographing the desert in the evening and at night. This picture was in harsh afternoon light, and the exposure and post processing was meant to re-imagine it in low light.

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