Smoky Mountains Sunset

Smoky Mountain Sunset

Smoky Mountains National Park is one of my favorite places on Earth. The mountains, the streams and rivers, the trees – all blend to make a spectacular place to visit. We love it here so much that we are working on purchasing property near the National Park, so we can live near its spectacular beauty forever.

This image was taken at Morton Overlook in Smoky Mountains National Park. Morton Overlook is located on Tennessee Route 441, and can be accessed at a pull-out. The layers of mountains make this a spectacular place to photograph sunset. There were several cars there, and quite a few people also taking pictures there with us, but not so much as to crowd anybody out. It might get worse there in the high-tourist summer season – we were there at the very end of May, right before school let out and all the tourists come out to play.

To photograph this image, I used my Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 70-200 f2.8 lens. I normally wouldn’t use this lens on landscape work, but I wanted to be able to pull in closer to the mountains and sunset. I took 3 separate exposures so I could use HDR later on in my processing and get one good exposure. I did this rather than use a neutral density filter mostly because I don’t care for putting filters (which can get dusty and dirty) onto my high-quality lens glass. With my tripod mounted camera, I shot the first image at .8 second at f-32 and ISO 100. The second image was shot at .4 second, and the third was shot at 1/5 of a second – keeping the f-stop at 32 and the ISO at 100. I then pulled the 3 photos into Adobe Lightroom, chose the 3 images I wanted, keyworded and titled them and exported them to Photoshop. In Photoshop I used the Google NIK HDR merge multiple image series tool, merged the 3 images, and used the “End of The Road” preset just because I preferred how that one made this image look. All in all I think this image turned out quite nicely, and I will be putting it up for sale on my Fine Art America page.

Would you like to learn to photograph like this? I am available for private lessons! Just use the contact form and let me know!

If I can do it, so can you!



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