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Tree and children at sunset

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Tree and children at sunset, testo e foto by Juza. Pubblicato il 08 Giugno 2012; 0 risposte, 3546 visite.

Shooting data: Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III, Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG HSM, 1/80 f/6.3, iso 200, handheld. Morocco.

In landscape photography, other than the knowledge of the photographer, there are other things that matters: the place, the light and the atmospheric conditions. In my recent trip to Morocco, I have been lucky to find all these three things together, in particular one day in the middle of the Atlas mountains. It was late evening and we (me and my friend Sandro) were still driving; it had already been a great day, we had visited some remote valleys and we had even seen a sandstorm...but the best was yet to come! The sky was very cloudy, and sometimes there was light rain. We had not many hopes to see the Sun before the sunset...

Then suddenly it happened! The sun come out from the clouds, very low on the horizon. The light was awesome, and the sky was dark blue on one side, and yellow/orange near the sun. We picked a dirty road and we found a nice place for photos; I had the 1DsIII with Sigma 12-24 and the 7D with Canon 24-105. When I noticed the tree that you see in the photo, fifteen minutes later, the sun had already disappeared behind the horizon, but the lights in the sky kept getting better and better - now the clouds were dark red and orange...what a spectacle! I was looking for a nice foreground, and the three was perfect. I have chosen the 12-24, at 12mm, for this photo because I wanted to include a lot of sky behind the three. Of course, I have taken a lot of photos, with many different compositions - it is rare to get the perfect photo at the first try, and if you miss an opportunity, you can't come back in time...so shoot, shoot, shoot! :-) Take photos from every angle, experiment, then later when you will see the results on your PC, you can choose the best one. To take this photo, I was lying on the ground, as you can see...

Juza at work in Morocco! (many thanks to Sandro who has taken this photo of me!)

The tree itself was already a very nice silhouette, but, again, we had a lot of luck: we were close to a village, and the children had noticed our big Toyota Land Cruiser. After few minutes, they come close asking for money, little gift or food. They begun to play around us to attract our attention, and when they noticed that I was photographing the tree, two little boys climbed the three...that was a fantastic opportunity for photos!

Few more things about the techs. I have taken this photo without tripod because the light was quickly changing, and I really had no time to mount the tripod while I was running around in search of the best spot. Initially I had chosen the f/6.3 aperture and ISO 200 due to handheld shooting; if I had used the tripod, I'd have chosen f/8 or f/11 and ISO 50 for the photos of the tree, but in any case to freeze the movement of the child it was really necessary a shutter speed of at least 1/80 or 1/100, so the choice of shutter speed, aperture and ISO are right, even though my current copy of the Sigma 12-24 is not razor sharp at f/6.3. The post processing of this photo is pretty simple; since I did not want any detail into foreground (I wanted to create a silhouette), I have increased the contrast clipping the blacks, and I increased the saturation to give an even more intense red tone to the sky. The huge vignetting is intentional, its purpose is to focus the attention on the center of the photo and the tree.

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