It's Good to be Green

April 15, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

 

I don't know about any you, but I have found it's really hard to keep this blog up to date as I spend more time on the photography and less time writing. That is just something I need to be better focused on. I have always enjoyed writing. For as long as I can remember I have been writing stories. But equally, or perhaps I guess even more, I enjoy exploring this world we live and capturing and processing the photographs that I take of it.

 

 

 

The shots seen in this blog are from a location in Nevada called Fly Geyser. It's an incredible looking geyser. It did start off life though as a human error. Drilling in the wrong place many years ago in a valley that is just a thermal hotspot, led to this stream of hot steaming waters and minerals gushing through the surface. Out side of Yellowstone, I have never seen so much thermal activity in one location. Now while the geyser began life thanks to a human, it's growth is totally natural. It has terraces, and colors very similar to what you see when you visit Yellowstone.

 

 

This is not an easy location to get to, it's on private property with a locked gate. But it so happens that a friend of a friend of a friend has access to it, and I was able to go shoot this! It was a last minute call from my friend, and I was in my jeep early the next morning for an 11 hour drive to get there. I left with the idea that I could swing by Mono Lake for sunset, and my timing worked out perfectly! But those shots will be for another day.

 

 

 

Both of these shots are obviously shot after the stars came out. There was a quarter moon out that was behind us lighting the scene up slightly. But we added some light of our own, using a weak headland to paint the main geyser for about 15 seconds, and then using a smaller flashlight that we put some green filters over and then made a temp cone for the front of it to funnel the light. The bottom area still needed a layer mask in Photoshop to clean up some of the stray green light. The exposure was a typical star shot exposure. ISO 3200 at 25 seconds and f5.6.

 

 

 

 

 

The shots are pretty close to identical except for the pools being light painted with the green light. At the time I wasn't really sure how it would turn out. The idea of the pools being green sounded interesting, but just in case, I wanted a more natural looking version also.

 

 

 

 

So which do you choose? I admit that my first inclination was towards the more natural one. But I do have to say that the more that I look on these, the more I am really liking the one with the green pools. And that comparison brings up an important point. It always pays to hedge your bets. In other words, it's always good to shoot several versions of a subject. Whether it's changing the lighting, or changing the composition. Perhaps changing the depth of field or changing the shutter speed. Create several versions as you are shooting.


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