Dale Yates  

Sunrise at the Straits by Dale Yates

May 2020 - Sunrise at the Straits

About the Image(s)

This image of a sunrise at the Straits of Mackinaw was taken during the early morning hours a few years ago while on vacation. In this area of the state, sunrises and sunsets are very beautiful. It was a very peaceful morning which allowed me to try to capture this beauty. My goal with this image was to capture the quiet serenity of the sunrise along with the clouds and the ray of sunshine peeking through. For this photograph I used an aperture of f/5.6 with a shutter speed of 1/500 of a second, ISO 100, and a focal length of 18mm. This photo was taken in RAW format. Post processing in Lightroom, includes adjustments to white balance, exposure and contrast, highlights and shadows, and overall sharpness.

9 comments posted

Larry Treadwell   Larry Treadwell
(Groups 36 & 67)
I really like the serenity of the scene. You placed the highlight of the sun perfectly on the right fixation points and all the lives of the image point to that location (Chairs, clouds, boat) I like the suggestion of open places created by the gap between the land masses on the horizon.

If I may be bold enough to suggest to small changes.
I would crop from the top to remove that little patch of blue sky on the left. It is adding nothing. Secondly, other than the highlight of the sun everything in the image is nearly the same tone. That part is fine. But the lake and the beach have nearly the same brightness. While the lake is interesting I don't feel you need that much sand in the foreground. The sand is entirely empty and is just a large patch of sand. Perhaps some of this could be cropped off the bottom of the image. It is your choice, since it is your image.   Posted: 05/03/2020 18:08:58
Dale Yates   Dale Yates
Larry - thanks for the suggestions. I agree with your proposed changes. I didn't notice the patch of blue at the top and agree it should be cropped out. As far as the sand, I was not sure what to do with this area and cropping some off should be a good solution. Thanks!   Posted: 05/04/2020 09:29:20

Cheryl LaLonde   Cheryl LaLonde
I really love the sunset, it is beautiful and it looks very serene. The sun looks great, not over or underexposed.

Looking at this image and experiencing it I have a few thoughts.

My experience of this image is that the chairs and the sunset are the main subject. I find the grass/trees and boat to be somewhat distracting from the main subject with my eyes being drawn to them and away from the sunset and the chairs. Was there any other composition that would have removed these from the image. Possibly a portrait orientation.

I agree with Larry that the blue at the top of the photo and the sand at the bottom could be cropped out.

I am not sure if you had a tripod but maybe a longer exposure to smooth out the high frequency texture in the water would have added a more serene look to the water.

To me the white balance appears a bit too yellow as well making it look a little un-natural. Possibly correct the white balance of the entire image and use the radial circle in lightroom to enhance the yellow of just the sunset.

  Posted: 05/08/2020 17:49:57
Comment Image
Robert Atkins   Robert Atkins
I was thinking the chairs as the subject as well. It looks just like a little chair family enjoying the view!   Posted: 05/09/2020 14:22:18
Dale Yates   Dale Yates
Thanks Robert! I truly appreciate your comments!   Posted: 05/17/2020 08:36:29
Dale Yates   Dale Yates
Thanks Cheryl! Your comments and insights are truly appreciated and thought provoking. I completely agree with the cropping both the top and bottom of the image and also agree with smoothing out the texture in the water. Unfortunately I did not have a tripod available to have the longer exposure. I also agree that the white balance is off and needs adjustment as the image is overly yellow.

Also thanks for your comments about the possible distractions. Interestingly, in the PSA Image Analysis class there is discussion on distractions, split interest areas, and the center of interest. While an image may have multiple areas of interest, there is a fine line between this and distractions. Your comments on the possible distractions are good and thought provoking and forces me to take note of this more in future images. Thanks again!

  Posted: 05/17/2020 08:36:03

Zolt Levay   Zolt Levay
I don't really have much to add, I agree with most of the comments above. I like the scene overall and the mood of the serene sunrise. I too feel the color is fairly monochromatic (mostly a result of the strongly filtered sunlight) and tonality a bit flat. My eye is drawn to the details on the left side, boat and dock, which I feel are not really helpful for the main idea of the image; I like Cheryl's suggested crop.   Posted: 05/10/2020 08:25:39
Dale Yates   Dale Yates
Thanks Zolt! Appreciate your comments! Please note my response to Cheryl on the matters noted.   Posted: 05/17/2020 08:38:33

Emily Kawasaki
I love the mood of this scene/shot. I kind of like the dark color of the pier (?) and boat on the left as contrast to the rest of the lightness of the scene. However, I could also imagine it looking good cropped, so it's more square and focused on the beach chairs and sunset. Cropping the sand in the bottom foreground might also look good, as the sand there doesn't necessarily add as much to the image compared to the water and sky (but that's just my preference). I think that the texture of the clouds and water are nice and crisp. Great capture of sun glitter as well!   Posted: 05/19/2020 09:52:42


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