Alabama Hills

Alabama Hills
Alabama Hills, originally uploaded by I Nancy.

There are always surprises lurking in your past photos. This image taken December 2010.

This was from a sunset outing in the Alabama Hills with my good friends Jerry Koenig, Connie Wade and Mike Sugar. The light was quite low and I was a bit worried about being able to capture the images I wanted. When I think back, however, this is the perfect lighting for this location.

Over and over we hear the admonition to look for good light. What is good light? I had always thought of good light as interesting light, and interesting light was something that created highlights and shadows. In this situation, however, the good light was flat light. The rocks themselves provided all the texture I needed and the sky, well, talk about a gift. Previously, I have only been at this location during dawn and after dawn. At dawn you are fixated on pointing your camera west-ward to get just the right light on the lower Alabama Hills and the Eastern side of the Sierras, like the image below. However, once the sun is up, as you can already see in this image, the shadows begin to form and, with nothing to diffuse them, they create problematic obstacles in this rocky landscape. This image above, however, was taken after the sun went down. It turns out, all  I needed was the contrast of the rocks to the sky to make this area sing.

Lone Pine Peak

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2 Comments to “Alabama Hills”

  1. Nice post, Nancy. Before looking, I would have expected to like the bottom photo, with light/shadow interplay better, and I would prefer to shoot when the necessary light is available. But I think I like the flat light above. Makes you think and reconsider some assumptions.

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