Thursday, March 17, 2005

Sunsets, Exposed

Yes, I've been

Searchin' for the Sunset Again

Tonight's entry is especially photo-heavy.  I did size some of the pictures down a bit, but it's still a bear on dial-up.  Sorry!  I feel your pain, because I'm on dial-up myself!  (By the way, Vince, the Tuffy film is a half-hour download over a phone line.)

Last night's pictures, revisited:

1. Edit: Auto Correct only.
This one is fairly close to the original image.  I clicked "Auto Correct," and it came out like this - a slight exaggeration of the original.  I liked it, so I went with it.

2. Edit: Extensive
This one I fiddled with quite a bit, trying to lighten the landscape and make the picture look as much as possible like what my eyes saw.  I think I used both the brightness / contrast / midtone controls (contrast down, midtone up) and the color controls.  Honestly, I don't understand the color sliders on this particular program.  Julie, thanks for the tip on that other software.  I'll try it when I have more time.

3. Edit: None
This is not what my eyes saw, but it is what the camera saw.  I resized it and called it done.


4. Edit: Moderate:  Mostly I auto corrected this one, too, but it is fairly close to what my eyes saw.  The single cactus in the middle is a saguaro, the same as the large cacti in the other pictures.  They don't start growing "arms" until they're about 75 years old.

New Photos
Molina Canyon at sunset
I've learned a lot about the camera even since yesterday, but that doesn't mean I got better pictures tonight.  I went back up the mountain, starting earlier and going farther, to the Molina Canyon Vista nearly five miles up.  It was the place I was aiming for, the last vista before the fee collection station at mile 5. The canyon does not, however, face west, so sunset pictures are pretty much impossible there.  I managed one sorta-kinda sunset picture, shown at right. The camera was facing south at the time.

Molina Canyon at sunset

I also discovered that by pointing the camera downward and pressing the button halfway, I could force the camera to set the exposure to light the ground better.  I took about forty pictures overall, some with adequately exposed vegetation and a too-bright sky, the rest with dark ground and colorful sky.  Neither was ideal, and neither cleaned up as much as I'd hoped.  Here to the left is essentially the same shot of Molina Canyon, with the ground visible and the sky white.

After a careful, brief walk down a trail to try to see the running water I could hear in Molino Canyon (which I managed, barely),  I went back down to Babad Do'ag Vista, where I was last night, 2.5 miles up the 30 mile road.  The odd name, sometimes spelled Babat Duag,  turns out to be Tohono O'odham for "frog mountain."  Here are some of the best shots I got there, with alternate exposures for comparison:


Believe it or not, I didn't fiddle with the last one at all, other than resizing.



alphawoman1 said...

These are so wonderful!

ryanagi said...

Very interesting! Can't wait to see what you come up with when you start messing with the manual settings. ;-)

chasferris said...

Fatastic... and some programs let you combine photos so you can put light forground of one with darken sky of another.  Limitiless and wonderful.  Keep up the neat photos.  

jeff466 said...

Those are some amazing pictures-thanks for sharing them!  Beautiful scenery-I love all the ones with the cacti especially.  Jeff