Folsom (CA), Cracked Lake Bed, Sunset Clouds, Long Exposure

ISO100, 19mm, f/14, 6.0 sec
Folsom Lake Auxiliary Dam, El Dorado County, CA

This almost was the shot I wanted to take, but a bit of impatience while shooting this image resulted in much more work in post and the image still did not come out like I envisioned.

With the still very bright sunset skies and clouds contrasted against the dark cracked lake bed, this image screamed for a multiple exposure HDR (high dynamic range) treatment.  At least 3 images are taken, separately spot metered for the sky, the lake bed, and one somewhere in between.  All 3 images are then blended, resulting in very little over/under-exposure for the entire image.  The problem here was I metered “correctly” for the mud, but that caused the skies to be blown out and only slightly brought back in post with Lightroom.  With the light fading fast, notice the 6 second exposure in the EXIF data, the impetus was to move on and find additional compositions.  What should have been done was to take an extra minute to meter for 2 additional shots.

EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center-weighted metering mode, ISO 100, 19mm, f/14, 6.0 sec

Folsom (CA), Cracked Lake Bed, Sunset Clouds, Long Exposure. Folsom Lake, CA. January 08, 2014. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.


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