Hiking Closed Canyon Trail

Hikers climbing their way through Closed Canyon in Big Bend Ranch State Park.

Photographer’s Notes
This image was taken in harsh sunlight at 1:30 PM using a 2-stop, soft, graduated neutral density filter with no major adjustments in post-capture processing. I did this just to prove that with the right in-camera techniques, you don’t need to rely upon HDR techniques or exposure blending to obtain an acceptable image.

I was able to balance the exposure in this high-contrast scene by metering for the shadows and then hand-holding my graduated neutral density filter to “block” the sunlit side of the canyon and prevent it from being completely blown out. This technique of “fooling your camera’s meter” is old school but works very well in high-contrast landscape situations like this.

Closed Canyon Trail

Closed Canyon – Big Bend Ranch State Park, Texas
Copyright © 2011 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II set on aperture (Av) priority using an EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens tripod mounted. The exposure was taken at 32mm, f/14 for 1/13th of a second at ISO 100 using a Singh-Ray warming polarizer filter and 2-stop graduated neutral density filter. Post capture processing was done in Adobe’s Lightroom 3.
Click on the image above for a larger version.

8 thoughts on “Hiking Closed Canyon Trail

  1. Great example Jeff! The golden hour is nice but sometimes you’re just not going to be there. You can still make the memory!

  2. Nicely done. I’m in the process of picking a graduated ND filter (or set). Images from you and two other photogs have me convinced that they’re worth having…

    • A good set of filters is worth their weight in gold out in the field. It sure beats spending hours and hours in Lightroom and Photoshop after the fact.


  3. Jeff,

    Thanks for the beautiful example. I also believe in making as many “in-camera”
    adjustments as possible and only small enhancements otherwise. Nice to see others still agree. That is what we love about photography…

Comments are closed.