January + February 2010 » Washington Trails
FIRST PRIZE • HIKERS IN ACTION Hiker on Rattlesnake Ridge. Washington Department of Natural Resources. Robb Mitchell
Work the Flash
FLORA AND FAUNA Cheeky Steller’s Jay. Rampart Ridge, Mount Rainier National Park. L. Lisa Lawrence
SECOND PRIZE • HIKERS IN ACTION Hiker’s reward: sunset from top of Spray Park. Mount Rainier National Park. Andres Caldera
Portraiture outdoors is another difficult endeavor. Faces in the foreground of a picture are often lit differently (less or more) than the beautiful backdrop you want to include in the image. A bright background can fool the camera’s automatic functions. This can result in a flat, boring photo if it averages the two exposures or a sil- houetting problem if it just chooses one zone of exposure. You may end up with happy, healthy friends but no imposing peaks in the back- ground or a background of clear, sharp peaks with just silhouettes for friends.
Try your camera’s forced flash-on setting if you’re getting the silhouetted friends. This technique works well when the sunset or sunrise is lighting the mountains or trees much more intensely than your friends.
Flashes aren’t just for dark days and places. Using your flash even when the sun is bright and everything seems well lit can add depth and highlights to your fellow hikers’ faces and put a sparkle in their eyes. Don’t have a flash? Try using your flash- lights or headlamps. Bright white LED head- lamps can work well for lighting up a face or making the tent more interesting for those evening camp shots.