Close your eyes and breathe. 1. 2. Breathe. 1. 2. Do you smell the fresh trees? Do you feel the wind hitting your face? Do you hear the river streaming by? When I go hiking, I find a spot where I can see everything, the trees, people, the water. I stand there for a few minutes, so I can focus on where I am and take everything in that is nature. I observe what is around me. I ask myself, what do I see? What do I feel?

I went hiking in Auburn, California back in July of 2021. I chose Auburn because I knew it was the place to go venture out and see different trails and scenes. Auburn has beautiful sights of trees, rivers, and waterfalls. I enjoy the outdoors because I feel free. It lets me be me and it inspires me to take beautiful photos. When I go out in nature, I don’t have a photo in mind to take. I let my senses take over and help me find what I am looking for. It could be anything from a tree or the sky or a leaf. In this photo, it was a branch and the sky. Then, I let my camera do its magic.

For hiking photos, I take my Canon Camera everywhere. It’s what gives me the photos I am looking for. I chose the Canon because, now this might sound weird, but it chose me. In my The Story Behind My Love for Photography post, I talk more about my Canon. It has more features and is easier to work with. When I am ready to capture a shot, I typically leave it on Auto settings, this is because it is easier to deal with when I am ready to edit. In this photo, I was walking back to my car and noticed there was a branch hanging and a bright blue sky. I looked and grabbed my camera and took a shot and that’s how I got the focal plant photo. To get the result of this photo, that’s all in the editing process.

Editing a photo is my favorite part! Editing is my favorite because I get to imagine how I want a photo to be, and I get to create something that I envisioned. When choosing how I wanted this photo to turn out, I observe the photo and take a minute or two to think about what colors I want to use or the aspect ratio, do I want to be zoomed in, or do I want it as a wide angle? For this photo, I needed to crop the photo because I wanted to focus more on the branch and sky.

When I had the right focus area, everything else fell into place. I wanted a vivid sky, and the leaves to be dark and in contrast with the sky. The trees were easy to determine since I wanted them to look realistic. I didn’t want the trees to overshadow the sky, so I didn’t want them to be too green or too dark, needed to meet in the middle.

For the editing software, I only use Photoshop. I love Photoshop because it has everything you need to create your photo. It is versatile. I use Photoshop to get the depth of a photo, the right tint of colors, and the angle. I first go into Camera Raw Edit mode (even though my photo was taken in Auto mode, this feature can still make the photo look amazing). I play around with the exposure, contrast, and highlights to get it not too dark or not too bright. I then add a Hue/Saturation layer to get more of the red color for the sky. For the sky, I used the Sky replacement filter, you can add any sky you want and adjust it to your liking. And this is how the final product of the photo came out.

Hope you enjoyed it and share it with others who also love creating Photos.

‘Till next time