It’s been a while since I had an easier day when I could go out and explore. Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge on Maryland’s Eastern Shore near Cambridge Maryland is home to all sorts of wildlife. I usually only make it there once, maybe twice a year and it tends to be in wintertime.
Heading out in the pitch black darkness, I drove the hour and half to arrive at the refuge before sunrise. I was fortunate that the rangers opened the gate before sunrise actually occurred so I was able to get into a decent location to photograph the sunrise. But for once, Skyfire was wrong and the color was really brief and a good half an hour before the sunrise. The skies were too overcast to do anything with the rising sun, but there was cloud cover that I decided to work with.
Installing the Lee 10-stop Big Stopper onto my NiSi Filter system, I began to work really long exposures set on the Bulb mode. The NiSi Filter System is great to work with as the attachment that holds the 100 x 150mm filters that I use can be easily removed so that you can compose and set the focus point before placing the Big Stopper in front of the lens.
The image above is a two-minute exposure with ISO 200, and f/20 for my settings. After cleaning the image in Lightroom, I decided to take it a step further and transferred it to my iPad to add a creative edit using the DistressedFX App. I would venture to say that it probably took longer for me to capture the image than to add the creative edits.
This style of images is a new series I’ve been working on this year. Reminiscent of the Hudson River Art School from the Mid-19th Century these images are American Landscapes that are given a editing treatment with a sense of Romanticism. Separate from my other images of birds, flowers and such you can see these images when I post them on my Instagram page.
It’ll be great to see you there and let’s see how we can inspire each other.
Reminds me of those old 20th c. handpainted postcards. Lovely!
Of course you know I had to go and look that up and I agree Eliza. Thank you so much for sharing this perspective.
Ephemera shops are full of them! 🙂
That’s super. Thanks Eliza.
Wow! Lovely transformation.
Thank you so very much Shannon.
I love both images! Do you like the Skyfire app? How accurate do you think it is?
Hi Jennifer, Actually I really like the Skyfire App, and find it about 70 – 75% accurate. It certainly is spot on for the non-color days. Thank you so much.
Great to know! You’re the first photographer to ever answer a question about a sunset app. lol. I don’t know if others feel like they are giving away a secret or what. Thanks so much!
Well that’s interesting. Perhaps they don’t look at it daily multiple times during the day like I do. I also double check before I head out as it changes. I see the changes about every 4 hours or so if there is one.