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on Aug 6, 2018 in Landscape Photography

You a Moth?

Sierra Crest Mammoth Lakes
captured by D850 / 24-70VR

Sunsets can stop us dead in our tracks! I remember not too long ago how a whole beach of folks stopped to watch the setting sun, its splendor simply couldn’t be ignored. So it is no wonder photographers want to preserve that moment photographically. With that being said, ever noticed how many sunset, or sunrise for that matter, photographs simply don’t measure up? This could be your own impression of your photograph or the lackluster response from others. Ever wonder why that is, why when sunsets can stop folks in their tracks, your photo is, blah? Could it be you’re a moth?

Sierra Crest Mammoth Lakes
captured by D850 / 24-70VR

You’ve heard the old saying, “Attracted to a flame like a moth.” We are really no different than a moth with our attraction to a bright light source and that often blinds us to the rest of the elements that need to be in the frame. The first and biggest one is emotion! Everyone on the planet, photographer or not has a sunset that brings back special, emotional memories. That’s the first hurdle our sunset must meet. Then there are the colors which many obtain in post by cranking up the saturation. Not your best solution. You’d be better served to get the White Balance in the camera and let its sensor do all the heavy lifting for you. In this case shooting with the D850 / 24-70VR, I set the WB manually to 9k. Lastly and perhaps the most important is you need to have a clean black. Then, me being me, I look for the financial hook and in this case, the top photo with Hwy 395 in the lower right corner makes this a great stock photo making easy sales. The morale of the story, sunsets are great subjects but take your photograhs to the next level by not being a moth!

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