The Grapes of the Russian River

Late summer is so beautiful hear in the California wine country. The grapes are getting ripe and it won’t be too long until harvest. The vineyards will be turning colors as soon as we get some frosts, which should be by the end of the month. The rains will be coming soon as well, and the colors are more saturated just after a rain. I will be ready with camera in hand this year.!!! All the same, I could not help myself. I went out to  take some “Before” photos of the vineyards. Feast your eyes on these:

Row of Vines in Nearby Vineyard

This is a row of wine grapes from a nearby vineyard. The shot was taken early morning, but the contrast was still high, so I used HDR with three bracketed images.

I tried to capture the photo above in a single shot, but I could not get enough detail in the shadows without blowing out all the detail in the highlights. A polarizing filter would likely have helped here. Most of the highlights are from reflections off of the leaves. The polarizing filter I had with me did not fit the lens I had. This is something of a point of frustration for me as I have three go-to lenses and they each take a different filter. But that is a topic for a future post.

This is a panorama of 10 HDR images. I crop using the rule of thirds.

I took this shot about the same time as the first image. This is a series of 10 HDR images stitched together with PS CS5 Photo Merge utility. I took the final series and cropped using the rule of thirds. (read more here on the rule of thirds) The tree trunk is on one third line and the sky is on the horizontal third. I like the composition better this way. The full width is shown today on the blog heading. That may not last, however.

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