A Yosemite Year – A Photographer’s Almanac April 2014 (Continued)

by The Ansel Adams Gallery April 30, 2014
A Quiet Day in The Mariposa Grove by Mike Reeves

Mike Reeves

Mike Reeves, Staff Photographer

For April’s post I wanted to show an image I took under what could be called making the best of a bad situation. In April 2012 I had been enjoying lunch along the river when I unfortunately cracked a tooth on what I was eating. Yosemite has a great dentist but he was out of town. I called around and the only place I could find to take me was in Oakhurst, nearly an hour and a half away. After getting down there and having my tooth looked at, I found myself with just a couple of hours until not only the sun went down, but also a couple hours until the Novocain would wear off as well.

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A Quiet Day in The Mariposa Grove by Mike Reeves – All Rights Reserved

Whenever I am in the area, I like to stop by the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. The area had seen some rain in the preceding days, and although the trails were muddy, the trees soaked up the rain and were quite colorful. The area near The Bachelor and The Three Graces was particularly interesting to me as the forest seemed to glow as the sun went down. The entire area was overcast, but light was bouncing around in the sky which illuminated the scene. I used a polarizer to eliminate the sheen of the bark, and carefully checked my composition to create a pleasing scene.

The image is simple but has many elements of contrast that I like. Normally in photography we refer to contrast as the difference between light and dark, but in this sense we can take the elements of the image one step further. A sense of tall and short is seen, with a small tree being dwarfed by the many giants around it. This also leads to a feeling of old and young which in this case is nearly 2,500 years. I like to show this image on many of my walks and classes to help participants go a little deeper into not only what the photograph, but why they photograph.