Last Light_Moab

As evening approached, I was in the right place at the right time.

As evening approached, I was in the right place at the right time.
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Behind The Lens

This picture of Fisher Towers outside of Moab, UT was taken on the last day of my vacation that was pretty rainy and overcast all week. This evening, the sun was breaking through clouds for possible light at sunset. I drove to the castle valley region thinking it would be a good place to capture a sunset picture lighting up the towers or some of the other rock features in the area. I was lucky to capture the sunset light along with the stormy clouds at Fisher Towers.
April 29, 2016 around 6:00 in the evening.
The lighting in the sky was magical with the storm clouds hanging around the LaSalle mountains adding to the evening light of the sun peaking through other clouds before it set. I was lucky to be at a scenic place to capture it.
Nikon D7100, with Nikon 18-140mm lens and tripod. I remember walking around to get the best shot among the foreground vegetation of the towers . I used a graduated neutral density filter. I shot in aperture priority, at 32mm focal length, at F11 and 320 ISO. My speed was 1/125 with an exposure bias of -1 step.
This was my second trip to the Moab area. On the first trip I was not in a position to take the kind of picture I wanted of Fisher Towers, so I was determined to be there for a sunset picture on this trip. We had hiked the area earlier in the week and I was inspired by the greens of the vegetation and wanted to capture the beauty of the spring landscape with the reds of the Fisher Towers.
Unfortunately, I have only made baby steps into the adventures of post-processing. So, this picture is the camera processed jpeg.
In my camera bag
Well I have my camera and several kit lens. Recent purchases have been a tripod, graduated neutral density filter, and a shutter release cord.
I have about two years experience on improving my photos. My best advice is to take classes if at all possible on photography. You want to develop a good basic knowledge of skills to build on. I'm not sure if I had the best settings on my camera for this shot, but I knew enough so I could get a picture close to what I was really seeing that evening. Your next best shot (because of lighting, subject, composition) could be right in your backyard and you need to be prepared with the skills to get it. My recent purchases of a tripod, NDF and shutter release cord have all helped to get this kind of picture. The tripod lets you get the composition set and then it doesn't shift when taking later shots. Because of the large gradient between the light and shadow of this picture, the NDF was a must. The shutter release cord just makes taking the picture easier--not having to reach up to the top of the camera on the tripod. Regarding composition, I was just trying to remember things my instructor told me - rule of thirds, fill the foreground, don't cut off things in the foreground, focus into the picture.

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