Ragged Point’s Cypress Tree (California)

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This is the first vista point in the mountainous part of the California Route 1 coastal drive from Los Angeles to San Francisco.

Travel Photography Blog - California. Ragged Point
California. Ragged Point
Loc: 35.775716, -121.32746

After driving for 200 km on flat roads, enjoying views of open plains and endless dunes and beaches, the road finally hits the mountains. A few twists and turns later you reach Ragged Point. At this spot the view to the north is still obstructed by mountains and trees, but you can enjoy an open view to the south. Also, this is a great spot to observe whales and dolphins in the open ocean.

I had photographed this place on a few occasions and I wanted something different this time. I composed the photo with the lone cypress tree at the edge of the cliff as the main foreground element, with the ocean and the coast in the background.

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 5 Bracketed Shots ( -2; -1; 0; +1, +2)

Camera: Canon 60D
Lens: Sigma 10-20mm
Focal Length: 10mm
ISO: 100
Aperture: F10
Bracketing: 5 shots (-2; -1, 0, +1, +2)
Tripod: FEISOL Tournament CT-3442  – Check my FEISOL Tournament CT-3442 Review.
Ballhead: FEISOL CB-40D

Processing: HDR Processed in Photomatix

Lightroom: import, tagging, export to Photomatix
Photomatix: I used 5  images to tone map image (-2; -1, 0, +1, +2), 16-bit tiff image was exported to Lightroom. (Tutorial: Complete HDR Workflow).
Lightroom: straightening, cropping, export as PSD image
Photoshop:  cleaning, contrast
Photoshop Plugins:

  • Topaz DeNoise was used to reduce digital noise (sky, water ).
  • Topaz Detail was used to enhance details in foreground elements (tree, ground)


  • anitahandle says:

    Just curious. Would not a 3 shot, -2, 0, +2, have achieved the same HDR spacing and results?

    • 3 brackets are more than enough in the most of the cases but when shooting against the sun I prefer to go for 5, 6 or even 7 brackets. From my experience, the more information you have the better rendering you get in HDR applications.

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