So here I am in Yosemite National Park, it's December and I was hoping for some snow, overcast skies and low hanging fog in the mornings. Well, best-laid plans...my reality is 60 degrees, no snow, blue skies and a cloudless day. Hmmm, what to do? Head for the shadows! On sunny days when the dynamic range is so short due to the high contrast and harsh light, I will look for areas that are covered in full shadow. This allows me to more effectively control the range of light. The key now is to find a subject or scene that has a variety and range of tones from white to black and variations of gray.
This image is taken in just these conditions at the base of Lower Yosemite Falls. Once I've gotten to a place where I'm happy with the overall light, I then start looking for interesting compositions. I look for transitions in flow, light to dark, texture, contrast of subject and overall tonal range. Finally and most importantly, am I emotionally connected to the image? How do I feel about the image? Does it make me smile and forget that I forgot to bring extra water and my damn energy bars :-)!
This image was taken at 1/4 second, f10, and ISO 100 at 65MM.
I hope you enjoy it and have a great day.