Sometimes intentionally shooting incorrectly yields better results. I said something along the lines of “Shooting this in the wrong white balance is going to look great.”
I had another friend point out the branches to me two weeks ago while at Coit Tower in San Francisco. With the background fog lit up by the city lights, the branches were perfect for a silhouette. As it happens, I do not set the white balance on the camera for these types of night shots. With the various types of city lights, it it very difficult to pinpoint the color temperature and continual adjust for each new location. So I shoot and adjust in post.
Of course, when viewing the image on the camera’s LCD, the incorrect color temp resulted in a very orange velvety background that give the entire shot a look of wallpaper swatch. The only problem from two weeks ago was the composition of the branches. I shot with too much wide angle and did not isolate these branches away from others close to it. There was overlap and did not look “simple and straightfoward”. Cut to this past weekend when I had a chance to re-shoot. A much better composition with the only issue being the moving leaves. I was unable to convince the leaves on a windswept hill to not move for 43 seconds.
EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center weighted metering mode, ISO 100, 200mm, f/8, 43 sec
San Francisco, Silhouetted Branch, White Balance, Long Exposure. San Francisco, CA. November 10, 2013. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.