CloudBurst At Blackwater

I liked these clouds by the lookout platform at Blackwater NWR. It reminded me of a starburst, but with clouds. I decided to leave the top of a small tree as a center point for a visual center to draw your eye. Three images @24mm, combined in Photoshop with layered masks for blending the three images.


Panoramas Are Not Just For Landscapes

BWR Moonrise_1170507 6Sometimes when I am walking around with just one camera with one lens, I come upon an image that is too wide for the lens I have with me. Or I see an image that is perfect for a panorama, but I invision a longer thin crop without a lot of extra image that detracts from what I want. I also do not want to crop my panorama from my regular file because I want a large image, either for a double page spread or maybe a large print, and want to hold the detail with all the added pixels. Most often I make panoramas with my 300 or 400mm telephoto, 24-105mm or one of my macro lenses for a macro panorama. I have not had great success with my 12-24mm zoom. Usually for simple panos I shoot 2 or 3 images for combining, but have gone up to 60 for very long or a series of multi-exposures for different rows of stacked panos for one image. I use Photoshop to render my panoramas and after practice you can get predictable results most of the time.

Cloudscape 17mm v1 BWR_80I9482

Opening in the Clouds Panorama

Great Egret v1 Brig 5 17_43G2715 2

Great Egret Panorama

4 img_Pano_cf_v2

Cloud Reflections In Water Panorama

BWR Clouds pm v2 m43 14mm 2sht pano

Thunderhead Cloud Panorama

More Cloudscapes From Davidson Mill Pond

Here are a few more panoramas from our outing to Davidsons  Mill Pond Park. Some are regular panoramas, and some are stacked multi-row panoramas, like the featured image.

DM Pond Pano stk v5 3img DM 6 17

5 image panorama, 14mm, m43 camera

Clouds DM 6 17 v1

4 image stacked pano, 2 img x 2 img

DB lndspe clds v1 6 17_1410159

6 img multi stack pano @14mm, m43 camera

DM Cloud 6 17 v2_1410176

4 img multi stack pano, horizontal, combined in 2 rows of 2 @14mm, m43 camera

DM Clouds pano 4 img DM 6 17

4 img pano @14mm, m43 camera

DM Clouds v1 6 17_1410167

3 images, horizontal, stacked vertically, @14mm, m43 camera

DM clouds v1 6 17_1410171

2 images, horizontal format, stacked vertically, 14mm, m43 camera

DM Clouds v1 14mm 6 17_1410169

2 images, horizontal format, stacked vertically, 14mm, m43 camera

A Big Y In The Sky – Or A Large Thanksgiving Turkey Wishbone

When we got home Thanksgiving Eve, we saw this huge “Y” cloud in the sky. I never saw a cloud shaped like this before so I shot quite a few shots as it was moving by above me. I only had my iPhone with me, so I shot multiple shots and spent about 15-20 minutes shooting as it drifted overhead. As it got more directly over me, it was harder to get shots because even shooting multiple sections, with the wide angle of view on the iPhone, it was starting to distort the shape making it harder to combine into a multiple image panorama on the ends. I settled on using this series. I combined them as best I could from the series that I shot farther away. 5 horizontal images, overlapped and combined. I am learning combining iPhone images are a challenge because of the wide angle of view and the distortion differences between images. I tried shooting a panorama on the iPhone as it was overhead, but that really distorted the ends of the pano. Even the the problems this is one of my favorite cloud images!


Another one of my favorite subjects are what I call Cloudscapes, instead of landscapes I look up. Fluffy clouds and bright colors make interesting subjects. Sunrises and sunsets help add another color dimension. They can also have an Artsy Abstract look and feel. A lot of my Cloudscapes I shoot with my iPhone using the app ProCamera. It gives you +&- exposure control, a nice HDR feature and a variety of low light shooting features.

clouds IMG_2615v2

sky clouds IMG_3792 v2

iPhone Sky Panorama

This is a two shot panorama shot with an iPhone. Then I assembled the images in Photoshop.

Cloudscape Panorama

When the clouds or sky look interesting, it is fun to do a multi-shot cloud or sky panorama. This was multiple handheld images shot with a zoom lens @70mm. This was image combined in Photoshop using Auto-Align and then Auto-Blend. Sometimes I combine them manually for more control of what I want. Final Image is 98″ x 21″.


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