The Castle at Capitol Reef – Photo Dissection

Another one of the images I really liked from the Capitol Reef National Park trip was this image. in it, we see The Castle standing guard above the Visitor Center at Capitol Reef, with the Castle catches the evening sun. The empty space is filled with a bare tree, and an almost dry river brings our eye gently into the picture.

Castle Initial ConceptThe image was shot by in the winter of 2017. It was shot with a Nikon D810 and an Tamron 15-30 lens. The image was shot at ISO32 with a shutter speed of 1/20sec at ƒ/22. A tripod was used while making the image.

The ISO was chosen first to allow the finest noise possible. Then an f-stop of 22 was chosen to insure a maximum depth of field. I had fore- and mid-ground elements I wanted to remain sharp, so I pushed this about as far as I could. It’s outdoors, so I have the light, so why not? This did end up resulting in the rather short shutter speed of 1/20th, which is fine for a tripod-stabilized shot.

This was the final image in a series of three set-ups and approximately 25 images. The initial image was from just off the road on the east approach to the visitors center. In fact, we drove on, but I had to turn around to try and capture this incredible scene. I got out of the car, and moved up from the turn out to an area with the river in my foreground. I was easily able to slot some trees into the dead space, camera left. I wasn’t to happy with the course the river takes in the image… but I can’t change that, can I? I shot a few images, varying the crop slightly and thought I was done.

As we were driving off, I looked to the right and what did I see? A crook in the river- exactly what I want! So we stop (again!) and I hike over to where the river looks good. I play, and I find one tree to fill the void on the left. A second series of images was shot. I left and started walking back to the car, and then the good light popped out. So I turned around for my third set of images. I waited until the light caught the pinnacles of the castle, and this final image was made.

Very little editing was needed. I did the typical contrast and color adjust. I did some dodging and burning and called it a day. The natural beauty is enough on this image!

Prints of various sizes are available on the Fine Art America website, as well as the artists Pixel site (http://davekochphoto.pixels.com/) and the artists personal site (http://davekochphoto.com).

 

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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