Gary Stiger  

Cyprus Stumps at Cape San Blas by Gary Stiger

August 2020 - Cyprus Stumps at Cape San Blas

August 2020 - Gary Stiger


About the Image(s)

Apalachicola, Florida is always a favorite spot for me when it comes to making pictures, and that applies almost any time of the year. During mid-January of this year a fellow photographer-friend and I went down for some photos as he has been trying to make it as a professional for some time now. The attached sunset was actually taken at Cape San Blas about twenty miles north of Apalachicola on our last day of the trip “ weather was perfect. Post processing was pretty normal using Camera RAW, and this image was then converted to a black and white using the Silver Effex Pro 2 NIK filters “ no special tricks or anything “ just simple post processing. I don’t know when I’ll make it back, but I really hope I do. We were fat, dumb, and happy back in those days!

Nikon D800 on tripod, 17-35mm lens at 35mm, f/22, ISO 125, neutral density filter used to soften the wave action, 25 second exposure.

8 comments posted

Emil Davidzuk   Emil Davidzuk

The original has wonderful sunset color

Good marks for long exposure technique. I like the foreground stump to anchor your shot.

Food for thought: the group of 5 stumps in the water lead your eye to the edge of frame and out. I offer the thought to remove the three stumps closet to the edge and now your eye moves into the background instead.


Emil   Posted: 08/02/2020 09:33:58

Jack Florence Jr   Jack Florence Jr
(Groups 47 & 66)
Lovely silver tones, Gary, and the sky compliments so well. It's nicely composed and I think Emil's comment improves.   Posted: 08/02/2020 14:21:24

Oliver Morton   Oliver Morton
Gary, like Emil and Jack, I think it's a wonderful photograph. I think both the color and monochrome versions are great. The toning in the monochrome image is outstanding.

I understand Emil's thoughts about the three stumps leading the viewer's eyes out of the frame. However, I personally think that removing only the one closest to the left edge would leave the excellent compositional balance and significantly reduce the out-of-frame issue.

Very nice image(s)!

  Posted: 08/06/2020 09:23:43

LuAnn Thatcher   LuAnn Thatcher
Hello Gary,

I hope you are doing well-a wonderful image, very peaceful and serene. I have to agree that the viewer's eye is being pulled out of the frame on the left side.

My image does correct the problem, and we all seem to agree with Emil. It is a straightforward fix. I did add more to the right side of the image to give the stump more space.

When you make the correction, take the shadow areas of the posts into consideration when you remove them.

Best regards,
LuAnn   Posted: 08/06/2020 10:14:40
Comment Image

Leah Konicki   Leah Konicki
Gary, very nice image, and I agree with the consensus that i works well in black and white and in color. I confess, the three stumps on the left don't create a distraction for me and I'm not sure I like the edited version omitting them quite as well. I think partly this is because odd numbers are more pleasing to they eye than even, and even though there are two stumps together they read as one element. I love the ocean, and you have captured the serenity of it here. Thanks.   Posted: 08/08/2020 17:26:50
LuAnn Thatcher   LuAnn Thatcher
You make a good point, Leah, about how we see things differently in images.

When I look at the tree stump now, it reminds me of a person standing on the shore reaching out to the two posts in the water - silly me.

Maybe I need to get out more.

Have a great weekend!
LuAnn   Posted: 08/09/2020 16:11:23
Gary Stiger   Gary Stiger
Hi Leah and LuAnn,
Thank you both so much for your input and comments on my entry this month. I too did internalize with myself about those stumps; I don't like them at all, and I did consider Oliver's suggestion of cropping out the left-most one. My main focus was on the foreground one which I had hoped would appear to be reaching out and inviting you, the viewer, to come on in and enjoy the view. Those five or six other guys don't appear to be helping my main man. Nevertheless, they were there, and I will not crop or eliminate them. Had I thought of it at the time, I probably should have repositioned somewhere else and maybe I did consider that; can't really remember. The sunset was stunning, the light was going down and I had probably just about had it after a long day. Still, those bad boys were there, and I accept them as they are. My friend, professional and award-winning film photographer Richard Bickel, will not even crop his images. If you buy any of his works they are truly unaltered, even if there are imperfections, and believe me there are damn few if any. You seldom have to think twice about what Richard is offering in a print, and he probably does several takes to get what he wants. I don't even know if he owns a digital camera, but he is both a photographer and an artist in the truest sense. What you see is what you get with Richard. I stand in his shadow.
  Posted: 08/09/2020 16:49:20

Bob Legg   Bob Legg
Gary, I think you were drawn to the sunset light as well as the reaching out stump. That left you with including those bad boys. I agree with taking out the last 2 of the stump on the left. How about this idea. Since you have a 17-35 lens you could of just expanded to 24mm and included the 5 stumps leaving more room on the left side of the frame. Maybe take out the lonely guy stump in the background like LuAnn did without telling us. On 2nd thought removing the 3 left stumps and the lonely guy works best. Great use of the ND Filter.   Posted: 08/10/2020 16:22:50


Please log in to post a comment