Salvaging a Sunrise

11 Feb
Joshua Tree Sunrise

Joshua Tree Sunrise

You ever take a photo, look at it in-camera, and think “Damn, that’s a keeper!”??  Well, I did.  With this guy.  Little did I know how difficult the journey of this edit would be.

There are some moments, some memories, which will always be branded into my brain.  This sunrise, taken in Joshua Tree National Park is one of them.  Watching the sun light pour over the desert was magical.  We had decided to make our way to Keys View so that we could watch the sky turn over the Salton Sea, but as we made our way through the desert, we saw this and pulled over.  I had to have a photo.

After a few snaps, our little photo party (David, Beth, Monica and I) made our way to the outlook and enjoyed a spectacular sunrise.  I am grateful we all agreed to the early morning wake up call, it was definitely worth the effort.

Now… for this edit….it was a beast.  The longest exposure shifted slightly, so the fine needles of the tree were difficult to line up/keep sharp.  In retrospect, I also would have done some more mid-exposures.  I believe these were -3, 0, 3.  I should have taken some -2 and 2 as well.  Also, the color cast was not what I remembered and the only way to correct the foreground was to lighten the overall exposure, making it much brighter than the dim pre-dawn I actually remember.  Again, in retrospect, I probably would have tried some light painting. At the time, it was rush-rush-rush to get a few shots before driving up to Keys…but if I had known it might have saved me a years worth of edits and re-edits, research and input from a few of my photo-peers…I would have found a few minutes to try it.

That all being said, despite this not being what I envisioned when I took the shot, I still enjoy the image.  As I said, that sunrise was incredible and I’m grateful to have this image to remember it by.

11 Responses to “Salvaging a Sunrise”

  1. ginnietom February 12, 2014 at 9:15 am #

    what a big photograph…fantastic colors and scene…uploaded to 500px ???
    a big hit 4 Popular voting more than 90% …:-)))

  2. Steph February 13, 2014 at 5:51 am #

    I love that photo, it looks really beautiful!

    • seeingspotsphoto February 13, 2014 at 11:07 pm #

      Thank you for the kind words, Steph! Much appreciated!

  3. 12thsonoflama February 22, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

    Sunrise is my favorite time of day. The peace that comes with it cannot be duplicated – even at sunset. There is something to being out in a relatively remote place like Joshua Tree all by yourself (or with photo buddies) watching the world come alive that just speaks to me.

    • seeingspotsphoto March 5, 2014 at 3:25 am #

      I couldn’t have said it better myself! Agreed 100%. 🙂

  4. Profesionalno fotografiranje March 21, 2014 at 12:46 pm #

    Very interesting photo. Congrats! Did you use some ND filter on lens? Because, there is some special mood (blue color on it). Thanks in advanced.

    • seeingspotsphoto March 25, 2014 at 5:00 pm #

      Just a UV filter for this one. It was just still so early, everything had a blue-ish cast to it still.

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