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Thread: Red Canyon, Utah

  1. #1
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Red Canyon, Utah

    I passed through the Red Canyon area of Utah driving to Bryce Canyon National Park. As with most of our Desert Southwest, the area is quite photogenic in the mornings and afternoons when the sun is at a low angle and somewhat flat and uninteresting at mid-day. I shot this image of a red sandstone formation with a single lonely tree growing on top late on a Fall afternoon. The blazing red color of the stone formation is quite natural and I have not enhanced the color in post processing. However the colors of the rock formation and the sky were made more vibrant using a CPL filter

    I used a Canon 40D with 70-200mm f/4L IS lens at 200mm with a Hoya Multi-Coated CPL. I believe that a CPL is just about mandatory for desert Southwest photography and the changes of color and saturation are breathtaking as you rotate the polarizer. I also love using a long lens o isolate portions of the scene.

    usm-img_8968-lonely-tree-web.jpg
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    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 11th May 2010 at 05:25 PM. Reason: add image inline

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    I also love using a long lens o isolate portions of the scene.
    I agree. I was, fortunately, blissfully ignorant of 'rules' that said you must use a wide angle for landscape, or ... you must not use a telephoto for landscape. I was getting on with it and then became aware that some people seemed to think this was tantamount to treason.

    I know Colin also uses longer lenses for landscape work. I can't be bothered with all the arguments about what's right or wrong. It just works!
    Last edited by Donald; 11th May 2010 at 08:56 PM.

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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    you must not use a telephoto for landscape. I was getting on with it and then became aware that some people seemed to think this was tantamount to treason.
    Hi Donald,

    My ears were burning, so I thought I'd chip in here

    For anyone interested in the topic, I wrote an article for Singh-Ray on this very topic ...

    http://singhray.blogspot.com/2009/09...-for-your.html

    At the end of the day, I'd suggest that what people need to do is forget focal length per sec, and simply choose the lens that gives them the field of view that they want - and then concentrate on positioning it correctly with respect to foreground elements.

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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    I harp on my students that the zoom lens and lenses of different focal lengths are for framing your picture in the photograph. Stop thinking of them as "tele," "wide," "portrait" or whatever. Frame your subject and forget about the focal length, in most cases. The picture on the wall will not have the name of the camera, lens, focal length, shutter speed, ASA and all such printed down in the corner. Who's to know?

    That said, I then have to teach them when to pay attention to focal length and such.

    Pops

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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Great photo. That is one place that I want to visit. It seems spectacular.

  6. #6
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Funny thing, Red Canyon is not written up in many tourist brochures. In fact, it is only a ten mile or so stretch on the road to Bryce Canyon National Park. Many visitors to Bryce have "tunnel vision" and head directly to the National Park. They don't take the time to "stop and smell the flowers" along the way. I passed through it in the morning and photographed on my way back late in the afternoon. The colors and shadows made the rock formations look like two different places when viewed at those times. It was beautiful in the afternoon but, the morning (IMO) was more spectacular.

    I have learned over the years (but, am not always true to my principle) never to pass by a photographic opportunity with the thought, "Oh well! I will stop and catch it later". "Later" more often than not, never comes around.

    Regarding focal lengths and landscape photography. Many photographers automatically reach for an ultra wide lens when they want to shoot landscapes. IMO, this results in many bland landscapes with a vast expanse of barren sky on top of the image and an equally vast expanse of uninteresting foreground bracketing a small area of interest somewhere in the middle of the image.

    I do own a wide lens, the Tokina 12-24mm f/4, and love it. However, I am quite judicious in its use. Often, I really like to frame a distinctive subject in the foreground, such as an interesting rock. This gives depth to the image. My 12-24mm Tokina is not used very often. In fact, I pulled it out of my travel case only once during my two week trip to China. I was shooting from the back window of my hotel and needed to cover an area wider then my 17-55mm lens could handle (see attached image) and couldn't shoot a pano because of the way I was leaning out of the window. I didn't mind carrying it (my main lenses were the Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 IS and 70-200mm f/4L IS) because if my 17-55mm had gone down, I could have gotten along (not quite as effectively) using the 12-24mm as my standard lens (after all a 19-38mm equivalent lens is not all that shabby).

    view-rear-hotel..jpg
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    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 12th May 2010 at 09:52 AM. Reason: add the image inline

  7. #7
    Ramblinman's Avatar
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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Is Red Canyon off of Interstate 15? I'll be going to Bryce Canyon and Zion Nat'l park in August. Best part is that we are flying into Vegas and driving to Utah via I-15. Really looking forward to that trip.

    I've been using my 100mm macro and 50mm 1.8 lens more and more for landscapes, instead of my wide angle.

  8. #8
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Red Canyon, Utah

    Ramblinman...
    I sent you a PM with directions to Red Canyon...
    Richard

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