How Was It Taken Series - Episode 1

In the How Was It Taken Series, we will discuss how a particular photo was taken. We will talk about the time when the photo was taken, the location where it was taken, the techniques, and post-processing. We hope you would enjoy reading this series. All comments and suggestions are welcome!

In this first episode, let's look at a photo taken at the Oxbow Bend in the Grand Teton National Park.


LocationOxbow Bend Turnout is easily accessible by car. There is a small parking lot off highway 191. Hike to the location where this photo was take from the parking lot is negligible. The location is extremely scenic, as you can see mountains (with snow even in July), lake, trees, and grasslands. No wonder this is extremely popular among all visitors to the park.

Time: The photo was taken during sunrise when the sun lighted up Mt. Moran. If you also plan to take photos at sunrise time, get there early. You can also shot the scene after sunset when twilight appears. 


Technique: To see the equipment we use to take landscape photos, please check this article. A tripod is a must-to-have tool to shoot such scenes with low light and low ISO. The settings of this photo is f/16, 0.3s, and ISO 100. Same as most of our photo sunrise/sunset photos, we used hard neutral density filters on the sky part to reduce the exposure so that the whole image is correctly exposed. There is always some luck involved when taking landscape photos, due to unpredictability of microclimate. For example, this image would be much less appealing if there were no such dramatic clouds, or if it was windy such that Mt. Moran would have no clear reflection on the lake. We often visit a single place for multiple times just for these reasons. 

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