Here is another photo from my January, 2008 trip into the park. The weekend before I arrived, they had a big rainstorm which knocked out any evidence of snow. Then, the day before I drove up, a big storm dumped nearly a foot of snow all over the valley. At 4,000 feet, Yosemite Valley does not always get much snow, so this was a real treat. What made it extra special was the fact that it all fell on a "clean slate" and every flake of snow was pristine.
I had never been into the valley in the winter before. Other photographers who I met that week told me that they had driven up for 20 years in a row looking for conditions like this. I should say that on my drive up route 40 along the Merced River, my eyes were filled with tears. Tears in recognition of the awesome scene before me. It just took my breath away and filled me with joy. Nature is my church, my cathedral, and it is times like this that I feel closest to "God"....that universal spirit which is all around us all of the time.
These dogwoods were in Camp Curry. I was struck by the intricate patterns of branches and the diagonal line of the main trunk leaning to the left. I composed to put the base of that line in a power point of the lower third of the image. I did some light painting to bring out the texture of the bark, and made sure that the white balance was set to capture the whiteness of the snow, but other than that, no other adjustments were needed. Just mother nature, once again in her full winter splendor.
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Spotlight photo at http://barbaralee.aminus3.com/image/2010-10-09.html