It has been more than a year since I have photographed near Lonesome Lake. That session resulted in the photo I donated to the “fireplace room” at Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown, South Dakota.
On this occasion, I told Deb around 4:15 yesterday afternoon that I was going to go looking for a photo opportunity. I wanted to see if I could get something in HDR at sunset that would look good. Then, I invited her along for the ride and she said “yes.” What a treat!
I started heading north of our town, all the while watching the sun and clouds off to the southwest. My vision for the photo involved bare trees and a beautiful sky just before or just after sunset. I also didn’t want any clear signs of civilization. If you go 20 miles north and a few miles west of Watertown, that isn’t hard to do.
After one other stop, I ended up at Lonesome Lake. By that time, the sun had set, and the clouds weren’t all that interesting. But I thought that I could at least show Deb the location. It was getting dark but I decided to try to take a series of photos, knowing that the camera sees light in ways that I don’t. I also knew that if I put my camera on a tripod and bracketed the exposures properly, I had several software tools that might produce something worth sharing.
And here’s the result. There is a surprising amount of texture in this photo, especially given that this (click here) is much closer to what I was seeing when I took the series. Pretty interesting, isn’t it?
One of the good things about my job is that when I give a photo assignment I often go out and do the assignment myself. Such was the case this past weekend. My particular mission was to shoot an HDR photo or two. I have spent about 10 hours on this task and, of the 300 photos I took, I’ve ended up with one HDR composite that I like. That’s not bad for a day’s work!
I have posted an HDR (High Dynamic Range) to this blog before but I thought I’d do it again. In simple terms, an HDR photo is really one or more photos of the exact same subject with varying exposures layered on top of each other and adjusted so the whole photo is well exposed – from the very bright to the very dark.
Incidentally, this photo has been selected as this year’s choice for my LATI Festival of Trees donation. It will be among many things that are donated and offered during the silent auction for the annual LATI scholarship fundraiser on November 18 at the Ramkota.
Finally, if you are still reading this, you may be seriously interested in HDR. If that’s true, go here to see a YouTube video I made on this subject.