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Teton Sunrise



Sunrise paints the eastern face of the Teton Range as it is reflected in the beaver pond at Schwabacher's Landing in Grand Teton National Park....
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Sunrise paints the eastern face of the Teton Range as it is reflected in the beaver pond at Schwabacher's Landing in Grand Teton National Park.
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7 Comments | Report
Furnitureman
 
Furnitureman July 17, 2017
Fsntastic interpretation of the Grand Tetons. Love the fresh composition of this.
ckaiser PRO
ckaiser July 17, 2017
Thanks!
Lesabre1954 PRO+
 
Lesabre1954 July 25, 2017
A very beautiful capture!
podesta
 
podesta August 20, 2017
Stunning picture
AmberDawn1 PRO+
 
AmberDawn1 September 23, 2017
Thank you so much for sharing your photo in my Peace and solitude challenge! :-)
Byronfairphotography PRO+
 
Byronfairphotography October 08, 2017
Beautiful scene. / Voted
AmberDawn1 PRO+
 
AmberDawn1 November 09, 2017
Chris -- This such a gorgeous photo -- I wish I could be standing there in person enjoying that rugged and beautiful view. Thank you for sharing it! :-)
David_Blakley_Photography PRO+
 
David_Blakley_Photography December 13, 2017
This is a very good contender for the win in my photo challenge. :)

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Behind The Lens

Location
I took this photo along the trail to Schwabacher's Landing in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. I had intended to take a shot at sunrise at Schwabacher's Landing itself, but I was running late, and I found the waterfront at the usual spot packed to the gills with photographers who had had the same idea, so I walked back toward the parking lot and found this spot completely unoccupied. The still water of the beaver pond was pretty spectacular, and I couldn't believe I had this location to myself while dozens of photographers shot just yards to my right and left.
Time
This shot was taken just after sunrise. I was late getting out of the house and couldn't get set up for the shot I had intended to take, but I found this spot just a couple minutes later. The sun was coming up rapidly behind me, and the quality and color of the light was changing just as fast, so I didn't have time to get my tripod set up. I improvised as best I could, and I ended up really pleased with the results. As I turned around to leave, several other photographers noticed the spot where I'd been standing and began setting up their tripods.
Lighting
There's no artificial light in this scene. The low sun angle was necessary to get the rosy-yellow color of the mountain peaks, but it left some of the trees between the peaks and the pond in pretty deep shadow. In the end, I think the serendipity of the location was worth the compromise in lighting.
Equipment
I didn't have a chance to set up my tripod, because I was rushing to get a shot before the light changed too dramatically, so I shot this handheld with a Canon 60D and the 24-105mm lens I usually keep on the camera. Had I had more time, I probably would have used a tripod and a prime lens, but the photo turned out well anyway.
Inspiration
We were in Jackson, Wyoming, celebrating my parents' fiftieth anniversary. I had spent all week taking in the sights with my wife and kids, my brother and his family, and my parents, so I hadn't had a chance to photograph very many landscapes. The day before we left, I got up early with the intention of getting a classic shot of the Tetons front-lit by the rising sun. Schwabacher's Landing was as far north as I thought I could get before sunrise after getting delayed getting out of the house, and I didn't quite make it, which led me to shoot from this location instead.
Editing
This photo has a fair bit of post-processing. I applied a gradient to get the exposure right on the sky without darkening the mountains or the foreground too much, and I adjusted the color and tone to replicate what I remembered seeing. Of course, I straightened the horizon and cropped the photo, and I applied the usual curves and sharpening to fine-tune the picture. The result is pretty much a true-to-life representation of what I saw at the time.
In my camera bag
My standard kit is the Canon 60D and 24-105mm f/4L lens that I used for this photo. Beyond that, what I carry depends on what and where I'm going to shoot, as well as what else I'll be doing. I generally carry a 50mm prime lens, and I'll often carry either a longer telephoto zoom or a wider prime lens, depending on whether I'm shooting people or landscapes. For landscape photography, I'll usually pack a selection of filters and a tripod as well. But I find that the 24-105mm lens rarely comes off the camera unless I'm doing something really unusual--probably 90% of my photographs are taken with that lens.
Feedback
It's hard to take a bad shot of the Tetons; they're just so photogenic. Getting an unusual viewpoint is harder, since they've been photographed from pretty much every conceivable angle. I've been told by lots of people that they've never seen this particular shot, but that's hard for me to believe: everyone who takes the classic Schwabacher's Landing photograph walks right past this spot, so I'm sure I'm not the first person to notice it. Still, it helps to go where the other photographers aren't. When you see a large group of photographers all shooting the same subject, rather than trying to pick your way through the forest of tripods, don't be afraid to hunt around nearby for a different vantage point.

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