Wednesday, August 22, 2012

North Fork Shoshone River

Overlooking the North Fork 5 1/2 x 8 pastel, Copyright 2012

Headed back out west with the smaller format, this time along the North Fork Shoshone River.  The highway that runs along the river takes you from Cody into Yellowstone Park, and it is a breathtaking drive.  Closer to Cody the terrain is less rugged and there are scattered ranches, many offered for rent to tourists.  Further upstream the gorge gets more narrow and walls more steep until the highway climbs up the to the rim of the caldera inside the park.

East of the East Entrance into the park the evidence of past volcanic activity is abundant.  Many of the ridgetops are formed by the sharp spires of volcanic dikes - long, narrow cracks where lava pushed through and solidified.   Morning and evenings (the reference photo was taken in the evening), the low angle of the sun creates dramatic light and shadows on the formations.

My intention with this one was for it to be a quick study like the previous ones.  But I found myself so caught up in capturing that light and shadow that any sort of time limit went out the window.  What I did unintetionally limit was my palatte, to only 16 colors, and four of those were blues for the sky.  It's quite satisfying to see how well that worked.   But I think it's time for a better camera - the photo doesn't do it justice.

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