Category Archives: Black Canyon of the Gunnison

Black Canyon of the Gunnison – Layer Mask Tutorial

I thought I would bring you back to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison today and use this opportunity to give you a quick Photoshop tutorial on using a layer mask and also how to process this with the onOne Perfect Photo Suite 6 using Perfect Layers.  This image from the north rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison at Island Peaks viewpoint.  The deep darkness of the canyon and the bright daylight of the sky make for very contrasting exposures and so you have to use either a GND filter or take two separate images.  I didn’t have the proper GND filters with me on this day so I chose to take two separate images for this image.  One image was exposed for the sky and the other image exposed for the canyon.

Here’s the final image:

Black Canyon of the Gunnison - ©2012 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved

Click to Enlarge - Black Canyon of the Gunnison - ©2012 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved

Here’s the video tutorial on how to perform a layer mask in Photoshop:

Here’s the same layer mask function using the onOne Perfect Photo Suite 6 – Perfect Layers

Don’t forget to enter my New Year’s Giveaway 2012 and your chance to win my Sunflower Sunset print!

Sunflower Sunset - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Click to Enlarge - Sunflower Sunset - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Capture Notes:

Also posted in Canon 5D Mk II, Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM, Colorado, Gunnison River, landscape, layer mask, onOne Software, Perfect Layers, Photoshop Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Big Island View

No, unfortunately I’m not taking you to the Big Island of Hawaii today, but back down to Southern Colorado to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.  I don’t see this image much, but this is the Big Island View along the North Rim of the Black Canyon.  I was just swept away by the steep canyon walls contrasted with the wide open spaces just beyond the wall.  The clouds rolling over added a nice dramatic look to the image.  This is one place I definitely need to do some more exploring next year.  Hopefully I can get down in the canyon next year and do some hiking.

Big Island View - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Click to Enlarge - Big Island View - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Capture Notes:

Also posted in Canon 5D Mk II, Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM, clouds, Colorado, Gunnison River, landscape, Nik Software, Viveza 2 Tagged , , , , , , , , , |

Crystal Reservoir

The image today is from the Curacanti, Black Canyon of the Gunnison area.  I saw this view coming down Highway 92 down from the south rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison toward Curacanti.  If you ever get a chance, Highway 92 is very scenic and especially during the fall as the colors are changing. It’s definitely worth the longer drive to get to the South Rim.  This image is of Crystal Reservoir.  It has the deep blue waters of the Blue Mesa and is the newest of the three reservoirs in the area.

I’m heading to New York City this week, so this blog may go dark for a couple of days.  If I can find some time, I’ll try to get a post out.  Enjoy the warm weather while it’s here.  I know Colorado is gearing up for a snow storm on Wednesday.  Have a great week everyone.

Crystal Reservoir - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Click to Enlarge - Crystal Reservoir - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Capture Notes:

Also posted in Canon 5D Mk II, Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L USM, Colorado, Crystal Reservoir, Gunnison River Tagged , , , , , , |

Into the Canyon

The trip to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison area was mostly to spend time with my Dad. It was really nice to spend some one-on-one time with him.  I probably haven’t done a road trip with my Dad since having kids. He is getting on in age and so I need to cherish these moments while I still have them. It was a rainy weekend, but we were going to give the fishing a try to see if anything was biting.  We ventured back East from Montrose, Colorado and headed to the Curacanti Recreation Area.  The Curacanti is also part of the Gunnison River and the deep canyon before it gets to the Black Canyon.  We stopped at Cimarron and ventured over the Mesa Creek Trail which takes you down to the Gunnison River as it’s heading into the Crystal Reservoir.  The access to the river is easier here, but don’t be mistaken the river in the area is still very deep and has a severe drop off after you get off the banks.  Lighting strikes above can clearly be heard down along the river as it echos in the canyon walls.  It was after 4 or 5 thunderous thunder claps we decided to cut our losses and venture back out of the canyon.

I did capture this shot handheld as we were walking down along the Mesa Creek Trail. The fog was still hanging around on this cold morning and the walls of the canyon and the foliage were still wet from the rain.  This shot just give you a sense for how vertical the walls of the canyon are and we were still east of the Black Canyon.

Mesa Creek Trail - Curacanti National Recreation Area - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography

Click to Enlarge - Mesa Creek Trail - Curacanti National Recreation Area - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography

Also posted in Canon 5D Mk II, Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM, Gunnison River, layer mask, onOne Software Tagged , , , , , , |

Sunset in the Black Canyon

Let’s get this week started with a sunset!  Last month I took a trip down the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.  The Black Canyon is located in western Colorado and is one of America’s National Parks.  It’s know for its deep dark canyon walls that have been cut through by the Gunnison River.  The Black Canyon is appropriately named on account of its steepness which makes it difficult for sunlight to penetrate very far down the canyon.  My trip to the Black Canyon was unfortunately met with a rainy weekend so my opportunities to capture the canyon were not ideal.  It didn’t help me in my fishing either.

This sunset was on the second night of my stay.  The clouds had opened up long enough for the sun to peak through during sunset.  It created some dramatic skies and so sometimes you have to take what Mother Nature gives you.  This picture is from the South Rim at Sunset View, which is the place in the park known for viewing the sunset.

Have a great week, everyone!

Sunset in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Click to Enlarge - Sunset in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison - ©2011 Rick Louie Photography - All Rights Reserved.

Capture Notes:

Also posted in Canon 5D Mk II, Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM, landscape, long exposure, storm, sunset Tagged , , , , , , |