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Sun Beams Through Monterey Cypress, Point Lobos

Posted by
Don Smith (California, United States) on 8 January 2012 in Landscape & Rural.


3rd Annual Magic Light, Moonlight, and Pfeiffer Beach Arch Big Sur Winter Workshop - January 8-11, 2012
5th Annual Springtime and Moonlight in Big Sur and the Monterey Peninsula - March 7-10, 2012 (space still available)
4th Annual Northern Arizona Workshop: Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend and Sedona - April 23-27, 2012 (2 spots left)
iPhone Photo Workshop in Carmel and the Big Sur Coast - May 4-6, 2012 (limited to first 50 signups)
3rd Annual Kauai Workshop - Garden Isle and Tropical Paradise - June 22-26, 2012 (6 spots left)
4th Annual Summer Big Sur Workshop - Mystical Fog and Colorful Headlands - August 21-24, 2012 (space available)
1st Annual Fall in the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Park - Fall Color, Mountain Grandeur, and Volcanic Forces - Deluxe Photo Workshop - September 24-28, 2012 (Workshop Sold Out)
4th Annual Arches/Canyonlands Photo Workshop - Moon Over Red Rock, Arches, and Canyons - October 27-31 2012 (Just Added).
2nd Annual Bryce/Zion Photo Workshop - Bryce Canyon Hoodoos and Zion Fall Color - - November 1-5, 2012 (Just Added).

New tutorial video on my website: HDR The Old-Fashioned Way With Don Smith

NOTE - I will be teaching my Winter Big Sur Workshop Through Wednesday night and may not be able to respond to all your comments, but I certainly will be reading them!

Disappointment with most of our images results from the fact that our camera simply cannot see the world the way our eyes do. Today's scene, captured along the north end of Point Lobos State Reserve near Carmel, is typical of such a high-contrast scene as it contains a wide range of tones (from the sun shafts to the shadows) that even the best of digital sensors would have a hard time capturing with a single exposure.

I thus decided to bracket my exposures (as there was no movement of the foliage) altering my shutter only and running 5 frames through Nik HDR Efex Pro software. From there, I had some fun layering various iterations in Nik Color Efex Pro 4 using the following filters: Pro Contrast, Brilliance and Warmth, Levels and Curves, Foliage, Detail Extractor and Glamor Glow. I ended up with an image that was more surrealistic than my original intent but I liked this version best. That's what makes this stuff so much fun!

We have so many options available today that as long as we learn to previsualize the scene at capture, we can easily render our intent (or even go beyond) in software - it truly goes hand-in-hand!

BTW – if you are interested in purchasing any of the fine Nik Products (and I highly recommend that you do), please use my code DSMITH at checkout to receive a 15% discount!

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III F/16.0 ISO 200 57 mm

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