I have been mostly sick all week and have started to feel better as the weekend approached. I was eager to get out and hike and shoot some photos. Saturday morning looked to be cool and clear, so I wouldn’t get a cloud show at sunrise, but I would probably have a nice hike anyway.
It also been raining heavily lately and the rain all moved out Thursday and the clouds all blew away, but it did leave some flooding behind and I thought that this might mean that the creek at Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge would be flowing nicely. I have been hiking at this place multiple times as it is nearby my house, so I left just before sunrise Saturday morning for a few hours of hiking and photography.
At the end of my hike, around 9:00AM, there was some sunlight making it onto the waterfall and I decided to try some different locations to see what I could make out of it. My first shot, I mainly just went to some rocks with the sun to my right and set up with some grasses in the foreground. I also wanted to include the stone steps across the creek just above the waterfall in the background. Below is a 6 second exposure that I made using a 10-stop ND filter.
The sun being at such an angle resulted in some brightly lit rocks across the stream and dark shadows in the foreground. The shadows do help the grass to stand out a bit. I think that the stone steps were really compressed in the distance and don’t read very well in the photo.
I then decided to move a bit farther down the creek to include this brightly lit, green shrub (or young tree) in the foreground. I also jacked up the tripod a bit to get some elevation over the scene.
I did use an adjustment brush on the shrub in the foreground to brighten it up a little as I wanted it to provide a little balance to the brightly lit waterfall in the background.
I next tried to get low and work with some rocks for a foreground. I thought that the rocks added some interesting texture and there was some ice on the rocks that did not show up as well as I had hoped.
Overall, I am probably happiest with the second of the three shots. It might be interesting to come back and see what this looks like at sunset with the light coming from the opposite direction.
I packed up my gear and headed back up the path to the car so I could go home and get some breakfast.
It was a cool morning and I had a nice hike alone in the country and took quite a few photos. A good start to a weekend.
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