Morning at Split Rock Lighthouse

When looking at this composition, to me it feels a little off. With the dark ice and the lighthouse situated on the right half of the photo, I feel like it might be a little unbalanced. Any thoughts on that and how you might have composed this scene would be helpful.

I’m also looking for feedback on the white balance. Does it seem a bit too warm to you?

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Nice work Luke. I like the composition, I think it works well with the light pouring in from the side of the ice leading you into the lighthouse. The one thing I might change is to crop out the bottom sliver of snow and ice that isn’t lit from the sun. The warmth in the photo seems fine to but I guess that’s a matter of personal preference.

This looks really good, Luke. It does not look to warm to my eye and great lead in tl the lighthouse. Really minor, but I would clone out the little white bit just above center on the left edge. No other suggestions.


This is wonderful! And to answer your questions, No, and No. I think the balance and composition is wonderful. The lighthouse was a secondary discovery, but I think placed nicely. the large boulder of ice on the right I think is balanced by the strong presence of the cliffs on the left. The white balance is slightly on the warm side, but I think perfectly appropriate given the low angle of the sun and the warm light in the sky.

I think this is beautiful just as presented and wouldn’t change anything. Oh, except clone out a few of the dust bunnies that can be seen in the sky/clouds.


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The balance and WB look just fine to me, Luke. I think the rock and cliff compliment one another and I would expect the WB to be a little warm at that time. No one else has mentioned it so it may be just me, but to my eye the lighthouse needs a little CW rotation. There are also a couple of dust bunnies that Lon already mentioned. I really like this and think it is worth a couple of small tweaks. Beautiful image.

Excellent image. The composition is really good.

A few minor suggestions:

  1. I would burn in and desaturate the bright orange trees in the ulc.
  2. I would move the WB to a cooler things a bit.

I find the upper section a bit more interesting. There is a great panorama up there with the cliffs, lighthouse, sky, and a slice of the icy mound (which is the weakest element and a bit too prominent). But it’s so different than what you’ve got that it’s really another image.

No and no for me too. I really like this Luke. That’s a great combination of frigid ice and warm light, and the placement of the lighthouse is a fantastic focal point.

Luke, this is an outstanding composition, as others have said it is nicely balanced. Having those foreground rocks makes me feel like I am actually there at this location. And the placement of the Lighthouse is perfect.

I like the warm White Balance here in the midtones and the highlights, it looks very natural for a sunrise shot. But I might consider cooling down the shadows in the foreground rocks. This would look more natural and create some nice color contrast with the warm highlights.

I also think you might be able to recover some more detail in the sky in the URC, it is starting to blow out, but I think there is more detail there to recover, especially in the clouds.

Thank you everyone for your feedback. I guess I was over thinking the composition. :slight_smile:

@David_Nilsen Good point on cropping out the bottom. I will try it out and see if it improves the look.

@Harley_Goldman Thanks Harley! Now that you point out that sliver, it is pretty distracting. I’m going to get rid of it.

@Lon_Overacker Thanks Lon! Those pesky dust bunnies! They’re gone!

@Ed_Lowe Thanks Ed! I’ll take a closer look and adjust the rotation.

@Igor_Doncov Thanks for your suggestions Igor! I will try those out and see how they look. I see what you mean about the panorama in the shot. Perhaps I’ll make a copy and crop with that in mind.

@Ed_McGuirk Thank you Ed! I did dodge the bright sky to give it a bright look. Perhaps I went too far. I’ll dial it back a bit.

This is what I meant:

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I think it’s a great photo, very well done! The composition works for me, but if you want to experiment you could crop out a little on the left, making sure not to get to close to the edge of the water. Maybe just to the right of the shiny reddish ice at the edge. I think what is brilliant about the composition is that the bright sky helps to balance the heavier "weight of the rock cliff on the left side.

After viewing and reviewing and reading the comments, I still prefer as originally posted.

I like it and I personally think the large ice covered rock on the right side nicely matches the weight of the dark trees on the right thus balancing the image and forcing the viewer to look through the central gap. Great shot with nice light and a pleasing view.

@Tony_Siciliano Thanks so much Tony! I have tried out different crops based on the suggestions above, but I only cropped out some of the bottom. I’ll try out cropping some of the left edge out too and see if that works.

@Jim_Gavin Thanks Jim!

@Ian_Cameron Thanks for the feedback, Ian. I wasn’t sure if the dark ice was too overwhelming or not at first. based on yours and other’s comments, the balance seems to work better for me.