The Way I See It


One of the trickiest parts of doing landscape photography is trying to find some order in the visual chaos we encounter when we're just out and about. I thought it would be interesting to show and example of how I approach this process. This example may not be the best, but it's fresh in my mind and so I thought I'd share it. Below is a picture of a little scene I came across while on a hike this morning. Pretty typical scene, but something in here caused me to pause. Maybe it was simply the quality of the light. Something about the arrangement of trees and the vertical lines they form. I decided to plunk myself down and try to figure it out. Lots of nice looking things were here and perhaps several options for a photograph, but I noticed that I kept visually going back to the area just left of center in the picture below. It's a little brighter there, granted, but there was something else. It's difficult to see in this picture here, but way in the background, almost in the center of the image there's a small grouping of trees. I liked how they played against the slightly crooked tree trunk just left of center about midway in to the scene.

I plunked my camera down amongst the rocks in the foreground and started looking. As you can see from the highlighted square, I was really interested in that particular part of the scene. Something about the way those little trees related to the crooked tree trunk, the quality of the light, the foreground leaves at the base of the crooked tree trunk. It all just seemed to fit together.

A little dodging and burning and here's what I finally settled on. Not sure if it's a 'keeper' yet, because I put it together pretty quickly, but I thought it would be interesting to share some of the process.