The light was close to what I had envisioned, but just a bit low on the to clear the hill on the right of the tree. Still, the storm clouds were moving through and late afternoon light was hitting the skies. Yet, I still ended up with a monochrome (B&W) image after processing.
(click through on the image to view in 700px)
Much as lush green pastures during the spring are more of a curse than a blessing in many of my landscape attempts, the dead golden grass in the winter had the same negative effect in this photograph. In the spring, everything on the ground is green, too much so usually. For this composition, the golden grass was too similar to the orange, yellows, and golds in the sky. It was a far too much of the same tones. So as has been the case recently, this photo was pulled into SEP2 for B&W conversion and processing.
The back story is that northern California is currently being hit was a series of storms, bring much needed rain to the area. That aspect of the weather is well and good and usually provides many opportunities to shoot dramatic landscapes. It has not been the case for a few reasons: it has been raining hard, the skies have an flat texture, and I just did not have my camera in the car. With those limitations the last few days, I was extremely happy to see the storm for the day dissipate and the sun bursting through with about an hour before sunset. The composition for the shot was already in my head. It was then a matter of getting the last tasks done at work so I would make the 3 mile of so drive to the location. And seeing as the clouds were moving at a decent pace across the sky, I threw on the ND-110 (10-stop neutral density) filter for a long exposure that took 104 seconds (1 min 44 seconds) to shoot. By the time I had taken 4 shots (including 2 long exposures), the sun had dipped behind clouds near the horizon and the skies had turned a dark grey again.
The original color photograph is here –> Lone Oak, Storm Clouds, Sunset, Long Exposure (Color)
Other recent posts with oak trees in silhouettes late in the day:
EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center weighted metering mode, 55mm, ISO 100, 104 sec, f/13
Lone Oak, Storm Clouds, Sunset, Long Exposure (Monochrome). Folsom, California. November 30, 2012. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.