Wow, I haven’t posted a blog in about a month. I have been busy moving from one house to another and the amount of constant work involved in that process has put me out of my usual routine of getting out a few times a week and trying to photograph something. But Sunday afternoon, after working around the new house much of the day getting unpacked and settled, I made time for a hike.
It was a clear afternoon, warm but not hot, and I went out to the Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge for a hike. The sky was clear and cloudless, so I wasn’t really inspired by any wide sweeping vistas, but the late afternoon light was fantastic. So I set about trying to find a few details to shoot that would benefit from the light. It’s late summer and the long grass along the trail is tall and becoming golden, so I focused my attention there.
Shooting from a long focal length, 120mm in the above photo, really lets you get a nice blurred background to showoff the foreground. The blurry curved grass stalks in background work well with the in focus grass in the foreground. I also reduced clarity a bit in Lightroom to give it a bit more artsy look.
I also love seeing the grasses backlit by the sun but I have always found it a challenge to photograph effectively. In the photo below, the sun is in the sky above and behind the grasses and the grasses are glowing with golden light. I have noticed the same effect on cactus and I don’t think that I have ever really captured it well. Below is my latest attempt.
I also tried a very long zoom at some distant trees near an old stone wall. This didn’t really create the isolation of the tree that I wanted, but here it is.
At the top of the ridge I noticed the light from the setting sun on the rocks of this overlook. I set about trying to get these rocks, the view through the trees, and the curving trail in the distance in a photo. It was a battle between including the foreground and not shrinking the distant trail down to nothing. In hindsight, I might have used a longer focal length and stepped back a bit. It was kind of a quick photo along the way and I didn’t really stop to troubleshoot it. Next time I will experiment with a longer focal length.
There wasn’t much of a sunset to photograph so I headed back home. I have been thinking about getting up to try to get a sunrise at a park near my new neighborhood where I walk in the morning. The next morning would have been perfect if I had gotten out of the house earlier with my camera.
Maybe next time.