Bryce Canyon – Minutes Before the Snow Storm (Utah)

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As I was standing at the edge of the Bryce Canyon watching the storm from the distance I had no idea how different the landscape would look in 15-20 minutes. It was hard to imagine that transformation from warm and sunny spring afternoon to freezing winter would be so abrupt. At the same time I had no reason to complain; it was an amazing day for landscape and travel photography.

Couple of hours later when I realized that heavy snow storm ruined my hopes for the beautiful sunset, I rushed to Zion National Park where I had more luck with the evening light.

Non-destructive Workflow

This is my second HDR photo that I processed without using dedicated HDR program. Instead, I used luminosity masking techniques from The Art of Digital Blending video course (see my review here). I really enjoy alternative HDR workflow. What I like most about luminosity masking is that it is non-destructive by its nature.

Travel Photography Blog - Bryce Canyon
Utah.Bryce Canyon National Park
Loc: 37.516425, -112.264853

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots ( -1; 0; +1)

Camera: Canon 60D
Lens: Canon 17-70
Focal Length: 33mm
ISO: 100
Aperture: F8
Bracketing: 3 shots ( -1, 0, +1)
Tripod: FEISOL Tournament CT-3442  – Check my FEISOL Tournament CT-3442 Review.
Ballhead: FEISOL CB-40D

Processing: Digital Blending with Lminosity Masks

Lightroom: import, tagging, contrast, basic color correction.

I opened 3 bracketed photos directly in Photoshop and placed each image on separate layer. Then, I used luminosity masking techniques to create final HDR image. In the middle of the processing I realized that I only needed 2 exposures to achieve effect I wanted. I used -1 and +2 exposures and discarded 0 one.

Photoshop Plugins: 

  • Topaz DeNoise was used to reduce digital noise (sky, water )
  • I used Perfect Effects 9 from onOne Software enhance details and contrast, in ice surface area, tree and grass. I used following filetes: Dynamic Contrast, Color Enhancer.