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Archive 2012 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country
  
 
Timmeh
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Hello all,

I got back from a workshop in the Yosemite High Country last week with a large quantity of shots. This was from the first night on Pothole Dome, and after a long stint of cloudless trips to Yosemite for me, we were treated with this show. Question on this one: does the rock in the foreground act as a distraction or give the shot balance? C&C welcome and appreciated! Two compositions:



Tim Aston 2012

Rock





Tim Aston 2012

No Rock




Jul 29, 2012 at 05:22 PM
DSC01
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Tim, I think the 2nd is much better, since the star of the show is the lenticular scene the 2nd shot is a much better shot to show it , 2nd comp works well with out the rock. Regards, Dean


Jul 29, 2012 at 10:41 PM
sadja
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


I disagree, mostly. The crop IMO has no subject and while the colors in the clouds are neat, they are not strong enough to make the scene work. For my taste, the rock adds an anchor. Unfortunately, it is centerd in the frame killing the compositional dynamics.


Jul 29, 2012 at 11:14 PM
dalite
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Is that a lenticular cloud? #1 is better because it has foreground, thus giving the photo depth, but the rock should either be cropped out or should have been to one side. It is a distraction and lends a static quality to an otherwise nice photo.


Jul 30, 2012 at 04:45 AM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Michael's workshop? :-)

Your sunset clouds are above one of my favorite backcountry photography areas - the Young Lakes basin, with Mt. Conness towering above all else.

Although the boundary is hard to define, at least for this non-meteorologist, I think this is what is sometimes referred to as the "Sierra Wave" cloud.

Dan



Jul 30, 2012 at 05:11 AM
Cloudbow
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


I prefer the top image with the rock. I found the position of the rock forgivable when I noticed the second rock farther in on the right. Together, they form the base of an arrowhead which, when followed to its imaginary point, lead your eye directly to the tip or point of the cloud (which also hints of an arrowhead).

Bev



Jul 30, 2012 at 05:27 AM
charlieboy
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Love the 1st one. It seems to give more of a perspective of the size of it all. Nice!


Jul 30, 2012 at 06:22 AM
helenica
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


I prefer the first one.


Jul 30, 2012 at 09:54 AM
bshamilton
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


1st for me. Gives the whole scene a much nicer sense of distance to the bg mtns. Really lovely light throughout.

Barry



Jul 30, 2012 at 11:46 AM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


A poster wrote: "I found the position of the rock forgivable..."

"forgivable!?" ;-)

Dan



Jul 30, 2012 at 05:26 PM
 

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cohenxa
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


#1 for me...the rock makes the difference


Jul 30, 2012 at 05:35 PM
Cloudbow
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


gdanmitchell wrote:
A poster wrote: "I found the position of the rock forgivable..."

"forgivable!?" ;-)

Dan


Hi Dan. My comment referred back to dalite's comment (two above mine) that the rock was a distraction.

Bev




Jul 30, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Timmeh
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


gdanmitchell wrote:
Michael's workshop? :-)

Your sunset clouds are above one of my favorite backcountry photography areas - the Young Lakes basin, with Mt. Conness towering above all else.

Although the boundary is hard to define, at least for this non-meteorologist, I think this is what is sometimes referred to as the "Sierra Wave" cloud.

Dan


This was indeed Michael's Hidden Yosemite workshop, and we got quite a show most night's and for one of the sunrises (5 out of 6 sunrises were stubbornly light on clouds). Shooting from Pothole Dome with 360 degrees of interesting clouds made this shot unfortunately rushed (hence less forgivable rock location). This was the last call for color on this cloud, so I took an open spot between two tripods.

I'm not sure what the entirety of the cloud is, but I think part of it was lenticular. It hung around stock still for four hours, and there were a number of spots that looked tented from some granite formation. After looking at some images of Sierra Wave, I would agree.

I think the majority find in favor of rock as anchor, so seeing that I have plenty of pixels to work with, and the business end of the cloud appears to be on the left, here's an appeal to the those who found the rock's placement a capital punishment-worthy offense. I don't think I'm losing too much by cropping off the right end of the cloud.

Tim




Tim Aston 2012

Appeal to the firing squad




Jul 30, 2012 at 08:19 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Just saw Michael's shot of the same cloud. I shot from the top of Pothole a couple of weeks ago - beautiful evening, but no clouds as special as yours.

Dan



Jul 31, 2012 at 06:19 AM
Tuan Le
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Usually I don't agree with firing squads but I think they got it right this time. That last crop works out real well and that cloud formation is pretty amazing.


Jul 31, 2012 at 06:56 AM
pumaknight
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


The colours are amazing, the clouds formation quite stunning, the rock...meh!!

But to be honest, saying the rock composition doesn't work is being picky to the extreme...it is an excellent shot!!



Jul 31, 2012 at 05:58 PM
CarloDidier
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


I prefer the last crop. Works very well. The pano is nice, but lacks depth.


Jul 31, 2012 at 06:04 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


It was interesting to see Michael's posted view of this same cloud. With that in mind - and after just posting a photo that I made from this same location in today's blog post - I came back to look at this and thought about it a bit more.

I think I understand what you were trying to do with the very wide panoramic format - perhaps recreate the sensation of being in the relatively high place with so much space and so many things surrounding you. However, because we don't share that common experience with you, we can only see in the photograph what is in the photograph. So, I thought about the scene independent of those possible associations and considered the compositional elements that you have to work with in the first photograph:

1. the wide cloud with its twilight color.

2. the sky above, below, and to the left of the cloud.

3. the distant ridges

4. the mid-ground forest (with some individual trees) and granite slabs, and especially an area of the granite that has a bit more of the warm evening light.

5. the foreground boulder and granite.

The central things of interest seem to me to be the colorful portion of the cloud, the foreground boulder with the bit of lighter granite beyond and the small group of trees to its left, and the far ridge. With this in mind, I often ask myself not so much "what should be in this photograph?" as "what can I remove from this photograph?" and retain and draw attention to those things that I most want to "show" to my viewer.

Thinking about what can be removed:

1. I feel like there is not a lot going on along the left edge of the frame. I would consider cropping it back to either almost the "point" of the cloud... or even taking away a bit of the point of the cloud. One thought would be to keep the upper "point" but consider losing the end of the lower one. I'm not certain about the latter idea, but I would experiment with it.

2. The very wide cloud is impressive, but in order to include its width you have kept portions of it to the right that are largely gray, and by comparison the brighter sections that drew your attention to it are diminished. I would consider a crop - perhaps a fairly radical one - from the right side of the frame. I might begin by cropping back very close to the large boulder, leaving it close to the lower right corner of the resulting image.

3. To my eye, the blue sky above the colorful cloud doesn't add a lot and it may actually also distract from the presence of the dusk-colored right portion of the cloud. I would consider cropping substantially off the top of the frame, perhaps down to or just barely above the colorful band in the cloud that extends to the right.

I did a bit of "hand cropping" while looking at your image and I feel like it has some wonderful potential, but that perhaps we could focus on the portions containing that "wonderfulness" if you considered letting go of some of the things on the periphery.

Hope that my thoughts on this are useful to you. And if Michael gives you any feedback on the image, I would be interested to hear what he says. (I'd even be interested in his reaction to my critique.)

Take care,

Dan



Jul 31, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Timmeh
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


Thanks for the input Dan (I always read your critiques whenever I find them on this board, and you're more than welcome to do so on my photos whenever you desire). This is the last crop I came up with based on your suggestions: Cutting off the bottom prong of the cloud didn't look quite right to me because that section never has enough substance to not wonder where the cloud ends. I left a small amount of breathing room (I hope it's enough) for the copse of trees on the right, the boulder, the left prongs of the cloud, and the little red flare in the upper right. The boulder draws the eye a bit more than I'd hoped, but I think it's necessary to keep from staying completely stuck on the cloud, and it seems to balance the left end of the cloud. Again, thanks for the help! I'll put this final product in the Flickr group that Michael made for us, and link this thread. Shooting the pano ended up paying off anyway, as I still have more than 12 MP resolution left over (despite the somewhat radical cropping).

Tim






Edited on Aug 01, 2012 at 04:25 AM · View previous versions



Aug 01, 2012 at 02:33 AM
lukeb
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Lenticular Cloud Over Pothole Dome: Yosemite High Country


helenica wrote:
I prefer the first one.


+1



Aug 01, 2012 at 02:39 AM
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