Last week I was in Yosemite for 4 days of shooting with a great group of people. I've never been to Yosemite in the spring, so was quite excited to finally see it during this season.
The expectation was to photograph dogwood, which is usually blooming this time of year, and wildflowers in the Merced River Canyon, as well as waterfalls. The dogwood barely bloomed this year, with sparse blooms on the trees, and little to no wildflowers in the canyon. What we did have was lots of water, which was very gratifying to see in our drought-ridden state.
My goal this trip was to take more unique photographs, in particular more intimate landscapes. Such opportunities were numerous once I started looking for them. I also seemed to shoot nearly everything vertically, which I rarely do. I think the shots required it, but I was surprised when I reviewed my images on the computer. I usually shoot a scene horizontally and then try it vertically for the different perspective, and in nearly every case here the vertical worked better. It really helps to move your camera around, zoom in, zoom out, before mounting it on your tripod to find your composition.
We had very few clouds while in Yosemite, and this shot didn't have a very interesting sky, so I chose to shoot just the reflection of Three Brothers and this tree with lovely new growth.
This was a new location for me and I was just blown away by its beauty. With less water and less new growth this scene would be quite different, so I'm glad I was able to photograph it in the spring.
When the sun is at a certain angle to the waterfall, the light reflecting in the mist can create beautiful rainbows. This brilliant color was at the base of Upper Yosemite Falls.
This is also Upper Yosemite Falls from a different angle, showing the power of all of that water and the tenacity of a single tree.
Cascade Falls is a much larger falls, but this is a shot of one of many smaller cascades.
The last evening we finally got a few clouds, and were able to shoot this reflection in a pool of water that only forms in the spring if there is enough rain.
One of my lessons this trip was that hopes and expectations are fine, but working with the conditions you have can produce something truly wonderful. There are beautiful and fascinating things all around us just waiting for us to notice!