Darin Hlavinka  

Single Tree by Darin Hlavinka

September 2020 - Single Tree

About the Image(s)

Canon 5D Mark IV with Rokinon 14mm 2.8 lens attached. 20 sec at 14mm with an ISO of 4000, tripod used. This is a manual focus lens so I figured out the focus area of the lens while it was still daylight (just slightly left of infinity). If you have ever been to the Palouse area and done photography up on Steptoe Butte you most certainly have shot this tree from up above. I decided to try and photograph this tree at night with the Milky Way visible. I tried a full circle Milky Way shot around this tree but didn't shoot it wide enough (some of the Milky Way on the left and right sides ended up being cut off after merging the images). This was processed in LR Classic. Adjustments included making the sky more blue, increasing whites and blacks, increase overall exposure, remove chromatic aberration, enable profile correction, brushing in more clarity and dehaze into the white parts of the Milky Way. Then, finally, a thin light grey border was added in PS.

11 comments posted

Ruth Holt   Ruth Holt
Beautiful! the stars are bright and clear. The tree adds a lot to this image. You might consider cropping off a little at the bottom..   Posted: 09/14/2020 10:01:31
Darin Hlavinka   Darin Hlavinka
Thanks Ruth for the comments.   Posted: 09/22/2020 15:00:16

Bill Provost   Bill Provost
Very nice! For me I enjoy the balance of the image. It is interesting that some of the stars that are shinning through almost look like they are in front of the tree? I haven't done much low light photos but this really makes that an interesting challenge. Though I don't usually care for borders in your case I think it adds to the image and being as thin does not distract. With all of the stars it separates the starry sky from the surroundings. Great image!   Posted: 09/16/2020 14:34:01
Darin Hlavinka   Darin Hlavinka
Thanks for the comments Bill, much appreciated   Posted: 09/22/2020 15:01:07

Audrey Waitkus   Audrey Waitkus
Thinking about Bill's comment about the stars shining through the tree, I'm not sure how that happens photographically, but it gives the image a sort of fairy-tale character, which goes well with the soft colors of the fading sunset. I really like that the clouds at the horizon behind the tree are visible, and I think you left (or brought out) just enough of the foreground to give a sense of place. I agree that this one benefits from the thin border, especially to delineate where the foreground ends.   Posted: 09/16/2020 16:01:42
Darin Hlavinka   Darin Hlavinka
It was amazing all the stars that the Rokinon lens and camera sensor captured that night. Thanks for commenting.   Posted: 09/22/2020 15:02:59

Abe Chen   Abe Chen
Your image is definitely an eye catcher. I was drawn to the picture by lighting; very well processed. Nice composition with the FG(grasses), mid ground(the single tree) and a lovely BG(the Milk Way sky & the hill). I would crop off a little from the bottom, so the tree isn't in the center.   Posted: 09/20/2020 00:37:59
Darin Hlavinka   Darin Hlavinka
Thanks for the comments. I'll be sure to try your cropping suggestion.   Posted: 09/22/2020 15:05:34

Eric Schweitzer   Eric Schweitzer
A beautiful scene, colors, and great composition. The colors seem a bit flat to me and I agree with cropping a bit off the bottom. I imported to LR where I cropped the bottom and made a few tonal adjustments to make the color pop some more. This may be a bit overdone, but see if you like it.   Posted: 09/22/2020 09:36:38
Comment Image
Darin Hlavinka   Darin Hlavinka
Thanks for the comments and I like the subtle tonal adjustments you executed.   Posted: 09/22/2020 15:08:52

Bob Laster   Bob Laster
Beautiful image with a wonderful night sky and great tree. I personally like the two layers of grass at the bottom.   Posted: 09/22/2020 21:09:31


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