Work your location

When arriving on the location of a great landscape waiting to be captured, it is important to work out the key features and start to work out different possible angles and compositions. This means it really does pay to arrive early and leave late.

Sunset from the Farm

This weeks image was captured on our trip through regional NSW. I have driven past these cattle ramps hundreds of times, but until now I had not thought of stopping and creating something different in comparison to my usual landscape image. The location had the setting sun bathing the hills, trees and farm fences with an amazing orange light.

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I tried a bunch of different angles before being rather happy with my initial image (located below). I love the natural lines in the image and the effect of the setting sun, but before hitting the road again I wanted to try something completely different. That’s when this weeks image was born.

Week 29 - Sunset from the Farm (Angle 2)

The setting sun was dropping rapidly and I had about 10 minutes to capture the last intense rays of light for the day. I positioned my camera to face directly at the sun, but to create the effect I was after I placed the centre of the sun behind the ramp of the cattle dips side planks. There was no way I would be able to capture the image in just 1 shot so I set-up the camera to bracket 5 shots of +2, +1, 0, -1, -2. This was then processed into a HDR image with Photomatix. One of the issues with shooting directly into the sun is that it shows each and every dust or mark on your lens or filters. Hence I need to spend a good 15 minutes in Photoshop removing the marks with the healing brush and clone tools.

So next time your out shooting¬† why not capture your safety image and then experiment. Sure you wont get a winner every time but in the digital world you’ve lost nothing giving it a go.