Storms Add Life to Yosemite Waterfalls
By John P. DeGrazio
I spent the last weekend in Yosemite Valley for the highly successful Range of Light Film Festival where I met several talented photographers and and filmmakers. The days were spent indoors which was inconsequential considering Yosemite Valley was being dumped on by successive rainstorms. In between the raindrops, I was able to sneak away for a few photographs. Here are two panoramas that I liked. The first one shows how quickly the waterfalls can heal after a storm. It is close to sunset so there is a little bit of a glow on the Leaning Tower and South Rim.
The second photo is closer to sunset and taken shortly before the light completely deteriorated. The wispy clouds above the North Wall influenced me to take this image. I enjoyed watching them dance around as the wind blew.
The lighting was far from ideal as you can see from the photos, but there are some tricks you can use when playing with the iPhone panorama feature. The first thing you must do is to start your panorama with the highlighted areas already on the screen. Your photos will be blown out if you try to bring out the light in the darker region then move into the light. Both images are a little darker because of this, but I did not want to lose data. As long as the highlighted area is on the screen, you can tap to focus and set the exposure on that highlighted area then begin your panorama. I touched these photos up slightly in Picasa but did not want to add much more fill light for fear of blowing out the clouds. Such is the case also in true photography with higher contrast scenes. unfortunately, there are no neutral density filters for the iPhone I knew about at the time of this post.