How the Art Happens - Fall is Looking Up

October 27, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

Fall is Looking Up

Fall is Looking UpFall is Looking UpLooking up through a fall colored aspen forest near Kebler Pass.

In a tall, golden, aspen forest looking straight up toward the sky is a popular concept. I have made similar photos many times but they kind of all looked the same. This fall I decided to try something a little different and utilize a lens that I only use on rare occasions.


About the lens. Nikon makes a 10.5 mm super wide angle lens which I used to use to capture dance photos at wedding receptions. It created a very different point of view, especially when held overhead, and provided a bit of variety when creating an album or slide show of the wedding celebration. The lens has been hanging out at the bottom of my camera bag for years!


Since visual perspective is the entire point of this composition, I decided to push the perspective to my limits and grabbed the lens at the bottom of the bag. Wow! Did it make those trees look tall? The field of view is so wide it also captured cars in the parking area and my friend Lois who was running around with me that day. It took some manipulation to get the scene composed without those distractions. Then there was the sun. I almost never want the sun in my photos since it dominates the scene. Our eyes or brain seem to want to focus on the brightest object in a photo and the sun will always be the brightest element. But, in this scene, since it became only a small starburst, I liked it.


As I process a photograph I have software that can remove lens distortions which I use with nearly every photo. But, with this image, it made the tree trunks straight. I decided I liked the curving trunk perspective a little better since it adds some mystery to the composition. Since I was looking straight up there is no correct orientation for this photograph. I wanted the trees to dominate the scene so I placed the starburst sun in a less dominant position lower-right. The stark contrast of the yellow leaves and blue sky is a major reason that aspen groves in Colorado are in such demand by photographers and other visual artists.


I hope you enjoy "Fall is Looking Up". It was a lot of fun to create.


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Crested Butte, Colorado photographer, Dusty Demerson creates fine art photography displayed as prints and canvases and provides private photo tours in and around western Colorado.

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