Wealth of Photo Potential at Highland, NY

It was by accident that I discovered what I believe is the only spot on the shore of the Hudson River that has a good view of both the Walkway over the Hudson and the Mid-Hudson Bridge. It’s at the new Highland Landing Park and is reached via a steep downhill drive from the main road. The fact that I arrived later than planned worked in my favor: too early would have had the rising sun glaring directly at me–maybe nice for a classic sunrise view from an elevated spot, but not when I’d deliberately chosen a vantage point from which everything I’d be shooting was above me.

With two bridges, a railway line, and a shore, there were plenty of lines to create interest as well as tension. I deliberately underexposed my first shot in order to emphasize these lines as well as to accentuate the moody sky (one of my trademarks).

In the next two images I used lines in a different way: to zoom in for close-ups, almost creating abstracts. This was a technique learned from one of my great mentors, Kerry Drager: virtually stop thinking of your subject as a particular object and conceive it, instead, as a pattern.  In both of these shots I moved the clarity slider in RAW way up to emphasize all the lines, and later, in CS5, applied some Unsharp Mask.  The first image I kept in color, having tweaked the white balance a bit in RAW to warm it slightly, but even so it resembles a tint rather than a true color image.

The second image, inspired by the work of another mentor, Harold Davis, I turned to B&W in CS5, experimenting with different settings until I decided I preferred the high-contrast red filter.

This industrial riverfront location offered still other kinds of photo opportunities. I’ll describe them in my next blog.

PRINT OF THE MONTH! My Print of the Month for February is Journey into Autumn, a favorite that has been exhibited and has just been purchased for corporate use. It’s available at a special 10% discount in three different sizes through February 29. To purchase, please visit my website. Here’s a preview:

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