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Friday, 07 November 2014 00:00

When the Elements Come Together

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Seen from the Blue Ridge Parkway, Second Falls of Big East Fork of Pigeon River is surrounded by the beauty of Pisgah National Forest every day. At certain times of the year, say autumn for instance, that beauty can take your breath away. Even so, not all fall foliage seasons are created equal; some are more breath-taking than others. This year the color around Second Falls caused a bit more sharp inhaling than usual. The maple in the foreground was a brighter shade of red than I've seen it in many years, and the surrounding foliage was likewise something not often seen so intensely in these mountains.  Interestingly, the morning this image was taken a cold front was on its way through, and by the time it cleared on the following day, the red maple and many of the other trees had been stripped bare. Nature is an amazing force. I was working in wind gusting to 10-15 mph, so patience was the order of the day. I wanted the maple to be a prominent shape/color element, but I also wanted enough magnification for the falls, which is probably 350 yards from my position, to appear large enough to be clearly seen in the image. Given the unusually low water level in the stream, this was somewhat of a challenge. The sky was a broken overcast and I debated including a small strip of it, but ultimately decided to go without. A focal length of 150mm gave me the angle of view I wanted so that I could fill the bottom of the frame with the maple and its neighboring oak - a red~yellow combination. An aperture of f/18 and a shutter speed of 0.4 seconds at ISO 100 gave me an overall slightly lighter-than-medium exposure.

Read 1954 times Last modified on Sunday, 14 December 2014 09:56

5 comments

  • Comment Link Donald McGowan Friday, 14 November 2014 13:35 posted by Donald McGowan

    Hello Everyone, thank you Jessyca, Bonnie, Nancy T., and E.L., for joining me in this conversation. Even though this is essentially an image about color, and I, thus, really appreciate all of your comments in that regard, I also am glad that Nancy T. mentioned the lines and shapes (triangles) that are essential supporting elements. In my mind, they are what lead the viewer to the color and the water. I love this location in October for both of these elements, and when both are in full presence, I don't think there is a more beautiful fall landscape to be found anywhere. There are several compositional possibilities: wider focal length, longer focal length, horizontal/vertical - all worth exploring.

  • Comment Link Jessyca Stansbury- McCargo Monday, 10 November 2014 08:32 posted by Jessyca Stansbury- McCargo

    Don, this photo is heavenly. I don't think I have seen any other quite like it. The colors are perfect. Congrats.... really nice capture.

  • Comment Link Nancy Tripp Sunday, 09 November 2014 10:10 posted by Nancy Tripp

    The beautiful foliage colors really pop but then my eyes followed all the diagonal lines created by the hills and trees that lead to the water. The triangles in the corners keep me in the center where the lines send me back to the water. Thanks for the journey through nature's colors.

  • Comment Link Bonnie Losick Sunday, 09 November 2014 09:28 posted by Bonnie Losick

    Love the color!

  • Comment Link E L Ayers Sunday, 09 November 2014 09:01 posted by E L Ayers

    Beautiful, great color, depth of field, thanks for sharing you talent each week

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