Hi everyone and welcome to today’s post. Zabriskie Point in Death Valley National Park might be one of the most photographed iconographic locations in the United States. The reasons for this a pretty simple; access. Just a quick jaunt up the path to the overlook and you are looking at one of the most incredible scenes in the American landscape. Like multi-colored neapolitan ice cream sinuous folds of earth rise and fall, spreading outwards to the Red Wall and Manly Beacon. To get a sense of the place please take at look at one of my past posts here: http://roberthclarkphotographyblog.com/2012/06/02/twilight-at-zabriskie-point-death-valley-national-park-ca/.
Sometimes when faced with such a grand landscape, or a landscape that has been oft photographed, you can get a different perspective by focusing on a part of the overall scene. By isolating the scene and cutting out most of the overall subject it is possible to show a unique view of a place. An effective way to do this is to use a telephoto to change the focal length of the shot. Dial in the shot, move back, change shooting positions, watch the light, look for interesting patterns, shapes, and colors. All of these methods are ways to get more creative and come away with more than the standard shot. For this scene I used a 70-200mm lens to create an image to compress the folds of earth that lead up to the Zabriskie Overlook. Beautiful late afternoon light was high-lighting the folds and created an interesting rhythm in the landscape. The light was pretty soft, tempered by some high clouds, as if the landscape was illuminated by a giant softbox. This revealed the beautiful highlights and kept the shadows open as well.
Of course I did shoot the classic shot. Who can resist when presented with such a fantastic landscape. But the next time you go make sure to try some alternative shots. Get creative. You never know what you might come back with.
Thanks for stopping by.