Creating with Light

Yosemite National Park

Mirror Lake

Mirror Lake is not the most active location in Yosemite Valley, but at this time of the year it certainly has a very powerful serenity. This was taken just off of the trail with my tripod extended as tall as possible in live view mode and a cable release. I really liked how the ice broke up the perfect symmetry of the reflection in this image, and because it was a morning shot a lot of the foreground is dark giving Mt. Watkins a spotlight type of feel.

Yosemite Falls

Yosemite falls is one of the biggest attractions in the valley, and at this time of the year it usually has a lot less water flowing over the edge. Since the temperatures were in the 60’s all weekend, the snow was melting and giving us a show.

Tunnel View Star Trails

Anyone who knows photography is aware that sometimes the best sunset shot, does not include the sun at all. This was taken about an hour after sunset from Tunnel View, and is a twenty minute exposure. Make sure that when you are shooting this type of shot you have enough battery to last the entire time. Another tip is if you turn your in-camera noise reduction off, you can write the data to the card a whole lot faster. You learn a lot with trial and error on this type of shot. The best way to get a good one is to get far away from any light pollution(i.e., any city lights), and the most movement will always be on the horizon (everything rotates around Polaris, the “north star”). Also, not pictured above, but the best foreground shots with star trails happen on moonlit nights.  Have fun with it, bring a flashlight and something to keep you entertained.

Half Dome

Half Dome as photographed from the same spot Ansel Adams took it from. Although this one is in color and uses Cokin Graduated Toabacco and a 3 stop Graduated Neutral Density filter. 










El Capitan

This is an enormous rock face that was carved into by a glacier thousands of years ago. The first image was taken at sunrise in El Capitan Meadow while the fog was slowly rising off of the Merced River. The second image was taken just above Tunnel View at sunset. I love how the two perspectives show an entirely different face of the rock. The depth is better in the sunset image, but there is something dramatic about the very first light peeking through the valley and striking the vertical granite face. 


3 responses

  1. Alex

    Incredible definition Ryan! Especially the top photo of Yosemite Falls. I love watching you hone your craft.

    February 18, 2010 at 10:02 PM

  2. MJE

    Wow so thats what Yosemite Falls looks like with water coming down! I thought it was just a rock formation with a water stain on it! Hah! Good job RJ, these photos are amazing.

    February 19, 2010 at 10:19 AM

  3. mom

    very interesting and enjoyable! not sure i can pick a favorite they are all brilliant. you are a very captivating show.

    February 20, 2010 at 4:50 PM

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