Icicles in Trees - Yellowstone / Gallatin Targhee
Additional images can be viewed here.
The image of icicles looks pretty simple. Just pull out your point & shoot or smart phone and take a picture. Well it didn't quite come about this way. We were driving along an ice road although I wasn't sure since we never saw the road. We stopped due the absolute beauty of all the snow covered trees around us. I took the normal images and then decided to walk around a snow covered tree a short distance off the road. I noticed these tiny little crystals on the back side of the tree, grabbed a few quick macro shots, and then hung around to figure out a better image. It's kind of like trying to create an image where none really existed.
First, using a wide angle macro lens, I was only a few inches from the icicles so I first focused on the icicles and took a photo. Holding the camera very still on a tripod, I then focused on the background and took another shot. Because the foreground was relatively dark and the background very light, I actually took 3 different exposed images of both the foreground and the background. I then selected 4 of the six images to create the above image using the most in-focus and properly exposed images. It was a lot of work and took many hours over several days.
It just shows that sometimes simple looking images are the most difficult to create. This is not a fake image as no elements were added or deleted from the image. It basically just looks like what my eyes saw when I was on location and that's the goal of all my photography. Of course, it helps if you are able to see things that other persons are not.
The above image shot with a 16 MP, cropped frame DSLR with 17-70 macro lens using a folded tripod for support in deep snow..