Natural Bridges, Last One + Repost

Natural Bridges State Beach, in Santa Cruz, CA, is named for the naturally occurring mudstone bridges that were carved by the Pacific Ocean into cliffs that jutted out into the sea. There were three arches originally, wave erosion carved the arches then cut away the cliffs leaving only islands. Of the three original arches only the middle one remains.

Color, too much? it was a crazy color sunset

Comp, too centered or other

Nikon 24-70 @ 26mm, f13 @ 1"

You may only download this image to demonstrate post-processing techniques.

Beautiful, Reno. The image has a great sense of motion in the water and a beautiful color gradient in the sky. To my eye, the yellows looked overcooked, but otherwise, processing looks good.

Hey Reno,

Not sure if this post will be going away or not, but I’ll comment while I can. This is one of the better comps of this formation I’ve seen and works beautifully primarily because of the sweeping motion of the receding wave. Very cool.

I too like the color gradient in the sky, but agree with Harley the yellow on the right side is a bit strong. The golden light and almost metallic look of the natural bridge is quite appealing.

All my years in California… I’ve never been.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Love the comp and that water motion is excellent! Ditto the yellow.
Nice work.

I would love to see this without the edge of the water in the foreground and the left side cut off, maybe closer to 20mm? My favourite thing about this is the lines in water and I reckon it’d be great to show them off.

I think the processing needs work, there is a lot of midtone contrast mainly in the rock face. I would drastically lower the contrast on the left side while bringing the blacks up slightly, the direct light hitting the right face of the rock is soft and great so make it about that instead of the texture of the rock.
There’s halo-ing around the rock and the yellows are overcooked which both also need work.

The hard blacks in the arch are a bit off-setting but the sweep of the water makes any other small fault forgotten quite quickly. Lovely.

Thanks everyone for taking the time to view and comment on my image, much appreciated. I tried to rework the image applying some of the suggestions: tried to smooth/reduce the yellow somewhat, the yellow started to take on an ugly patchy look so didn’t reduce much; couldn’t go any wider with the comp, suggested maybe a 20mm, any wider on the left begins to show the headlands; opened the darks/blacks on the arch interior and lower parts of the rock. I can barely see the edits I made, any more aggressive edits caused some ugly artifacts to show up.

Again, thanks for your comments.

Nice image. Well composed to draw the viewer in and not overly busy. The contrast and light look good. Yes, the yellow looks a bit strong, but just a bit. The rock is glowing in this light, so the sky can handle this a bit better as a result.