Yosemite

Yosemite Valley - Channeling My Inner Ansel by Adam Jacobs

During my photography workshops, I often refer to the work of one of the masters of landscape photography Ansel Adams to showcase how the power of great composition, being patient and understanding the fundamentals of light are crucial in creating great photographs. Much of his work was shot in Yosemite National Park in California.

I just spent Memorial Day weekend in the park photographing where there has been a recent spell of wetter than normal weather. This meant that the waterfalls were flowing stronger than normal, the Merced river was full of fast flowing water and the trees were lush, verdant and green - great conditions for photography. Unusually, for late May there was even a freak snow storm which blanketed much of the park, clearing out most of the crowds and leaving me to explore many new areas without having to deal with traffic or people in my shots (which can often be the case at this time of year).

Below are some of my favorite shots as I channeled my inner Ansel. Do you prefer the color or black and whites?

After visiting this spot so many times, this was one the best times I’ve seen the light falling so perfectly on El Capitan on the left and Bridal Falls on the right. I also love the big booming clouds and how you can see Half Dome in the background with a little covering of snow. There is a reason this spot is known as Inspiration Point!! This photo is going to look awesome printed out huge.

After visiting this spot so many times, this was one the best times I’ve seen the light falling so perfectly on El Capitan on the left and Bridal Falls on the right. I also love the big booming clouds and how you can see Half Dome in the background with a little covering of snow. There is a reason this spot is known as Inspiration Point!! This photo is going to look awesome printed out huge.

Color version of the above…which do you prefer?

Color version of the above…which do you prefer?

Another view from Tunnel Point/Inspiration Point taken late at night as low fog settled over the valley creating a perfect leading line to Bridal Falls.

Another view from Tunnel Point/Inspiration Point taken late at night as low fog settled over the valley creating a perfect leading line to Bridal Falls.

Color Version of the above

Color Version of the above

My neutral density filters always come in useful on trips to National Parks. This was taken with a 6f stop ND filter to give the fast flowing water (pretty unusual for this time of year) a soft, silky appearance. I got some wet feet but it was definitely worth it for this shot!

My neutral density filters always come in useful on trips to National Parks. This was taken with a 6f stop ND filter to give the fast flowing water (pretty unusual for this time of year) a soft, silky appearance. I got some wet feet but it was definitely worth it for this shot!

Late Summer in Yosemite by Adam Jacobs

Yosemite National Park is such a special place to photograph. It has something for everyone: enormous Sequoia trees, cascading waterfalls, beautiful meadows and of course those awe-inspiring iconic granite cliffs and rock formations including El Capitan and Half Dome (from which the North Face Logo is based)

I made a quick trip there last weekend in between some jobs to capture some landscape photos following the recent fires. It was so sad to see the massive devestation caused by the Ferguson fire which was especially noticeable when driving into the valley off the road from Wawona. However, fortunately much of the beauty and majesty of the park remains intact.

Below are a few of my favorite shots from the trip. I can’t wait to go back in a few weeks to photograph some fall color.

Fun fact…Yosemite has more granite formations than anywhere else on the planet!!

The Milky Way by Adam Jacobs

High up at 9000ft in the meadows of one of my favourite National Parks, Yosemite in California it was amazing to see the Milky Way clearer than I had ever witnessed before. Using a long exposure and manually focusing the camera to infinity, my camera was able to bring out the wonder of the sky above that was so clearly visible given that I was away from the light pollution of the city. I included some foreground elements to contextualize the grandeur and vastness of our universe. This shot is going to look great blown up big! 

Adam Jacobs_Milky Way Space Photograph