Thermal Features

Discussion in 'Landscape' started by davidtriplett, Nov 22, 2016.

  1. I love visiting Yellowstone, but I have struggled to capture the full effect of the thermal features. I'm getting better at it, I hope, and my improving equipment gives me more options to address technical challenges. How do you approach issues of scale, views obscured by steam, and limited access constrained to established boardwalks? Please share your work and tell us about how you captured your best images. Here are some of my examples.
  2. Here is an early attempt, stitched together from multiple images.
  3. This is a more recent effort, made at very fast exposure to freeze the action.
  4. david_henderson


    I have a gallery of c 40 thermal images from Yellowstone on my site
    In general I favour getting a bit closer in than your top two images, aim for simplicity and not too many different colours, and try not to include stray bits of boardwalk.
  5. Yellowstone
  6. In addition to close-up features, including background is often effective for giving context to a thermal pool. There is no reason to stick to just one approach. I like having steam in parts of a photo as long as there are other parts that are clear and in sharp focus.
    David, I like your freeze action photo, I need to try doing that.
  7. Thermal pool detail
  8. Astounding photos!
  9. Both close up and wide, and close and distant, and everything in between.
    Some of the best shots are the ones that you did not expect.
    • Don't limit to close up or wide, do both.
    • Walk around a lot, to look for different angles and viewpoints.
    • Shoot from high and low. Cameras with pivoting screens make it a lot easier to do the high and low angle shots.
    • If you stay upwind, you get less steam in your face.
    • Make use of the steam and integrate it into your pix.
    • Different times of the day (sun angle) will give you different colors in some of the pools.
    • Some times including the boardwalks with some of the features adds to the story.
    • Loot at and buy some of the postcards. Some of those guys spent a long time finding the spot and angle to get good images. Then reverse the process, and figure out where and how the shot was made.
    Be smart, be safe, and stay on the paths. You want to get home at the end of the day, not be turned into a boiled piece of meat.
    I used a polarizer a LOT when I shot Yellowstone with slide film. It got rid of the glare, so that I could get the color of the pools better.
  10. Here's an old scanned slide from way back: Minerva Terrace in Yellowstone NP.

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