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Autumn Thoughts





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Behind The Lens

This photo was taken in the woods behind my home in Asheville. There's a trail that leads up to the Blue Ridge Parkway if followed long enough, and another that forms a 6 mile loop in the Pisgah forest. This particular location is off of that loop near a creek that I've also shot in. I love the location for providing amazing colors and plenty of privacy, and it's quite fun to find various ways to play with what that location provides.
This was shot around midday and right before a major storm, so we had started to rush things at the end of the shoot. We were running to different spots within out location trying to grab what we could before the rain fell. The rushing around was quite exhilarating, and between each shot both myself and the model would be laughing about how absurd we must look running from spot to spot. It was a lovely experience.
Due to the approaching storm the lighting went from bright and sunny to overcast and gloomy very fast. We were trying to find what little pockets of light remained, and this area still had just enough muted sunlight bursting from the surrounding clouds to create a beam that coated the area and lit the model and her surroundings beautifully without being too overpowering.
This was shot with my trusty d850 and my 85mm lens. We were rushing to get shots so I had to leave most of my gear in the bag and get what I could with just the one prime lens. It forced me to think of creative ways to work around the landscape and setup my shots.
While looking for spots we could use before the storm hit, we found an enclosed area where a log had fallen. The log had moss growing in a patch between two bushes, and its setup offered the perfect framing for the model. The main reason for choosing this spot though was the fact that it was one of very few areas still illuminated by the sun. The storm clouds parted just enough for a beam to shine directly over the area we ended up using, as if we were being directed to use it.
This shot had quite a bit of color editing done. We had shot this in spring but I wanted more of an autumn mood, so I altered the greens into orange tones and muted the overall image a bit. I also played around with the highlights and shadows to give the shot a brighter look than the original stormy shot had. Even though it was stormy out, the bit of sunlight we still had was incredibly helpful for the edit.
In my camera bag
I normally have my D850 with a D810 as a backup, and my four prime lenses (35, 50, 85, 105). I also occasionally carry a few rgb led light tubes for some color play, and a few filters and diffusers as well. At the time of this shot though, everything had been packed up and put away due to the approaching storm. I only brought out my D850 and 85mm lens, it was pure guerilla shooting.
Always keep an eye out for great ways to utilize your location. This shot was only captured because we were trying to find ways to work with what we had, and the location and conditions provided us with a wonderful opportunity. We played around with a few different setups in this spot and all the shots looked fabulous. So always look for ways to utilize what you've got around you!

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