In Northern Lapland, during the polar night, the sun doesn’t rise above the horizon at all. In Saariselkä, Finland, this period of darkness lasts about a month from December 4 to January 8. But even in the winter months after this, you can only see daylight for a couple of hours. This picture is from mid-January, taken at about one o’clock in the afternoon, and the sun was already setting.Unlike normally in my travels, I hadn’t done much location scouting this time for the simple reason that Google Street View doesn’t cover the wilderness very well. So, being forced to go looking for interesting places while there heading to the cross-country skiing tracks sounded like a good plan. Along the tracks, I spotted this tiny stream that wasn’t frozen forming a nice zig zag line to the sunset and immediately thought that this could make a nice composition.Regarding technical aspects, the image is merged from three exposures for optimal highlight and shadow quality. The post-processing is done in Lightroom as well as Color Efex Pro 4 and output sharpening in Photoshop.
As my previous upload, this shot is also from Saariselkä, Finnish Lapland. More precisely, this is the view to the east from near the top of the Kaunispää fell, which is a fantastic vantage point in the area.This morning there was heavy fog, causing the rising sun shine beautiful soft light on the sparse trees on the slopes of the fell. Obviously, visibility was very limited also, but I thought it was actually quite nice, allowing for clean and simple compositions.The final image is a panorama merged from five vertical five-exposure HDR shots. I post-processed it in Lightroom, Photoshop and Color Efex Pro 4.
The top of Kaunispää fell has become my favorite place to shoot in Saariselkä, Finnish Lapland, because it is both relatively easy to access and offers a tremendous view to the surrounding nature.As it was just after the polar night had ended in the area, the sun was above the horizon for only a couple of hours, and the lighting conditions were hence changing extremely fast. At around noon this mid-January day, a fleeting moment of amazing light occurred; in the other fells near Kaunispää itself, a thick fog was being illuminated by the orange sunlight. I opted for a long lens to capture the far-away magic.Regarding the technicalities, there’s nothing special here as this is a one-exposure image. I post-processed it in Lightroom, Color Efex Pro 4 and Photoshop.
This shot was taken around a year later almost exactly on the same spot at Saariselkä, Finland, as another one I posted here earlier, only this time the lens pointing to the opposite direction. Although being captured at the same time of year, this photo was taken in the morning at sunrise.What initially caught my eye in the scene was the beautiful frost-covered trees having the rising sun as their backdrop. However, I wanted to complement them somehow and spotted an animal trail in the snow leading right to the woods. I used the trail as an element inviting the viewer to the landscape and actually ended up considering it a vital part of the shot for me.The end result is an HDR image merged from three exposures. I edited the file in Lightroom, Color Efex Pro 4 and Photoshop.
Like the one I posted here earlier, this picture is also taken in the Écrins National Park on the way to Lac du Pontet.This, too, was a location I hadn’t scouted beforehand, so at least that morning the journey was just as important as the destination. Seeing the hills bathe in the morning light was truly an amazing sight and hopefully to some extent captured so that it makes justice to the beauty of the scene.On the tehnical side, the final image is a panorama merged from four vertical seven-exposure HDR photos. The post-processing is done in Lightroom, Color Efex Pro 4 and Photoshop.
As my previous upload, this image, too, is from Saariselkä, Finland. I had come down from atop the Kaunispää fell to reach the tree line for this shot.In the untouched snow, there were beautiful dunelike shapes in the snow known as sastrugi, formed by the harsh winds. I started carefully working my way downwards the hillside to find one of these to be the front element in my shot, at the same time trying to avoid stepping on the snow and leaving footsteps potentially ruining the image. I finally found a shape in the snow pointing directly to the setting sun and composed the picture using that.As for the technical side, this is a three-exposure HDR shot post-processed in Lightroom, Color Efex Pro 4 and Photoshop.
I took this shot in the Écrins National Park in the French Alps located close to the Italian border. It was early in the morning and I was on my way to a small lake called Lac du Pontet, of which I also have posted a picture here.I hadn’t done any research about the spot before the trip but just happened to drive by it. As the sun was rising, rays of sun were cast to some of the mountainsides, and I just couldn’t resist stopping to take a picture of the scene.The end result you see here is an HDR image merged from three exposures. I used Lightroom and Photoshop to edit the picture.
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