Tim Putnam
Landscape and Fine Art Photography


Making "Sunset in Tennessee"

Sunset in Tennessee

Some sunsets are different than others.  Cumulus clouds at sunset/the golden hour are something to pause and revere. This is taken less than a mile from my house, but it's one of those moments that is a complete inconvenience. My family was ready to be home, but I saw this view and had to stop. They graced me with ten minutes to shoot this, and in that time I was able to get some really interesting things to work for me.

Here is the in-camera original:

 Sunset in Tennessee, in-camera

Sunset in Tennessee, in-camera

The interest in this photograph, to me, is the blur that runs through the middle. You may not even notice it. This was taken between me, a barbed wire fence, and the clouds. 

Nerd alert: ISO 100, 180mm lens, f4, 1/640 sec.

The f4 aperture completely blurs the fence line, but it's still visible in the photo, giving character in addition to the ominous clouds. I added a little dodging and burning, as well as a texture to give the image more character.

I only took seven shots of this scene to ensure my family wouldn't murder me. A few were portrait shots, but ultimately the landscape made more sense. 

 Sunset in Tennessee, in-camera, vertical

Sunset in Tennessee, in-camera, vertical

Slight color correction, a little dodging and burning, and the final was pretty easy.