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Gnarled Tree On The Precipice



As we walked along the brim of Bryce Canyon, my wife noticed this tree; it drew her in. I almost passed it by except from her!

Nikon D300s 18mm f1...
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As we walked along the brim of Bryce Canyon, my wife noticed this tree; it drew her in. I almost passed it by except from her!

Nikon D300s 18mm f14 1-10sec
Read less

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Awards

Contest Finalist in Wicked Weather Photo Contest
Member Selection Award
Spring Selection Award
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Superb Composition
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Magnificent Capture
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Freshmen 2016 Photo Contest Vol 2Top 20 class week 2
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Worldscapes Photo ContestTop 20 class week 2
Worldscapes Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1

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11 Comments | Report
jefboulet PRO
 
jefboulet April 08, 2016
Great work. Splendid colours and composition !
laurenkaymyers Premium
 
laurenkaymyers May 05, 2016
This is absolutely stunning. Congrats on your award. Welcome to Viewbug!
amirajanovic
 
amirajanovic May 05, 2016
nice photo
jeffpedersen
 
jeffpedersen May 10, 2016
Great capture of this location
ovosphotography
 
ovosphotography October 21, 2016
like it!
ovosphotography
 
ovosphotography October 21, 2016
like it!
sigridbh
 
sigridbh November 03, 2016
Fantastic capture !
catherinethompson PRO
 
catherinethompson January 01, 2017
Fabulous capture. Well done.
jen4582
 
jen4582 March 29, 2017
Well done! Absolutely stunning
renomike PRO
 
renomike September 29, 2017
Great Shot.... I call this the walking tree. Amazing how it stays alive. Great gallery of photos... Mike
dakoch PRO+
dakoch September 29, 2017
Love this tree- we visit a couple times a year....
charityhipkins
 
charityhipkins February 23, 2018
I love this. Stunning.

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Behind The Lens

Location
I made this image from the rim of Bryce Canyon National Park, from the west rim, about halfway between Sunrise and Sunset points.
Time
We were chasing a storm between Escalante and Bryce this day. As I recall, we had popped a tire on Hole In The Wall road going tot he slot canyons there. We ere on a spare, so driving slow and taking our time. A snow squall was following (actually, leading) us to Bryce. We stopped a few places for pictures, with the goal to shoot sunset at Bryce. When we got here, the storm just sat over the reaches of Bryce. It made doer some interesting pictures (also posted on ViewBug). The, just before the sun actually slid behind the mountains, it peaked out beneath the clouds for about one minute. It was magic.
Lighting
I was all set up for storm shooting- everything was going blue. When the sun slipped below the cloud layer, it shot the contrasting yellow-gold light in almost parallel to the ground. It is a super incredible light, and I have only photographed it a few times. It always makes for a memorable image. This shot was only there for a minute, and it was as awesome as it looks here. It does not hurt it was above Bryce Canyon, one of the most photogenic places in the US. I got lucky- real lucky. This would be like 100's of other pictures if not for the instant of special sunlight.
Equipment
Tripod. Always a tripod. Nikon D500. I used a nikon 10-24mm lens, and shot at iso100.
Inspiration
I was wanting to shoot a sunset here. When I got there and the weather was so good, I thought I was lucky. But the shot of gold light was the real lucky bit. The other thing I like about this is that I was in a position to have a good foreground when the magic happened. Bryce is too easily shot wide of a beautiful albeit distant landscape. I had a great teacher early on who drummed into my head to ALWAYS shoot a foreground-middlegropund-background (Thanks BP!). So I always look for something to show depth and distance. It all just came together here....
Editing
I modded this some in Lightroom. I boosted the colors some, but did not have to add anything... this was all there (which is what makes it more incredible to me). Bryce already has the reds and oranges, the trees add greens, the sun threw in yellows and golds, and the storm and shadowed clouds were naturally blues and purples. I LOVE colors, and I lve it when I can shoot a natural rainbow in the landscape...but it was all here to begin with. I believe I also adjusted the contrast- I like full contrast. I want to see all zones in a picture, especially in the darks. That is about it for post processing- this one was mostly in camera, and being in the right place at the right time....
In my camera bag
I keep two camera- a D500 and a D300s backup. I am probably gong to add in a D750 soon, because I really should be shooting full frame. I always pack a 10-24 and the 18-200- that covers almost everything I need. Depending on what I am shooting, I will also carry a 35mm, 50mm or 135mm prime, and a 70-200 2.8. I use a couple flashes (obviously not here), wireless shutter trtigger, NDs and polarizers.
Feedback
I like to pre-visualize things. Weeks or moths before, if it is a trip or something. Think about what you want, and how to capture that. but dont be a slave to that pre-vis- roll with the changes. I NEVER have shot what I anticipated, and I have always found something better. But the mental exercise of planning is super important to being ready to change based on actual conditions. This is probably the most important thing I have learned as a photographer: you will never get the image if you don't get out there to shoot it. That seems simple and even obvious, but what I mean is you have to put yourself out there. You have to be the one to make yourself get up at 3 am. You have to be the one with frozen fingertips. You have to plan these things, you have to drive there, you have to sit there and wait. You have to put the time in. These things will happen if you put yourself out there... and they will also happen if you are not out there to witness and document them. The lame thing to say is "YOLO"- but take that attitude. get out there and make images. They will not all be great, they may not all even be good, but you will be out there. You sure as hell will not get the images staying home. Good luck and HAVE FUN!

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