This was a photograph taken early in our 3-day mini-vacation to the Eastern Sierras last month. Even though the camera gear was packed in the car, photography was not the main focus for this portion of the trip. Getting to Mammoth Lakes at a leisurely pace was. Yet after driving through sideways rain on the western slope of the Sierras, seeing a rainbow in Hope Valley, and finally getting out of the storm, the remnants of clouds and layers of hills called out to be photographed.
Little did I know that meant getting “attacked” by spiky seed pods along the road, getting blasted by wind gusts, and nearly scalping myself with a low hanging pine tree branch. Fortunately, those incidents were the worst of the 10 minutes it took to capture a variety of photos.
The challenge of this particular composition was placing the lone tree at the intersection of two layers of hills. Having the tree a bit to the right would have resulted in the tree backed by a darker hill silhouette and becoming nearly invisible. So here I was having back and forth along the side of a two lane highway with cars and semi-trucks speeding by at 65 mph, then cross the road to climb up an embankment to finally achieve the composition I wanted.
EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center-weighted metering mode, ISO100, 200mm, f/8, 1/320 sec
Woodfords (CA), Pine Trees, Layers, Crepuscular Rays, Monochrome. Woodfords, CA. October 15, 2014. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.