Rocky Gorge backwater

As I looked for possible posts, it struck me that my title is a contradiction in terms. If it’s local and not widely known, then it’s not an icon… Since over the last year, the majority of my photography has been done in my backyard, it also does not seem appropriate to call my backyard a local icon. Anyway, here’s a late fall view along the Patuxent River as it feeds into Rocky Gorge Reservoir, which is one of two water supply reservoirs in the Maryland suburbs of Washington DC. In addition to water supply, these two reservoirs provide limited recreational opportunities, so they’ve been quite busy this last year. (5D3, 100-400 @ 164, 1/160 s, f/14, iso 800, tripod)


I bet it’s been a little busy. Looks like a great place to ramble or just sit and absorb the natural world. The arrangement of rocks and reflection here is really nice. Then the open background of those gorgeous trees. The right side isn’t adding much, so I hope you don’t mind a little re-imagining.

ACR to warm white balance a bit, drop the shadows, boost colors just a tiny bit. Also lowered the luminance of orange and yellow, boosted it in green and reduced the blue saturation (shadows). Then I gave it a little crop and took out the thing in the middle of the water (a branch?).

To my eye it becomes fully rich and inviting with the tweaks, but your vision is the most important so take it as kindly meant.

The colors, clarity and composition work very well, at least for me, Mark. The looks like a wonderful place to just wonder. Beautifully done.

What a lovely spot and photo. I like how all the wedge shapes that compose the image lead to the center and both the colored areas at top and reflected at bottom are framed by darker areas. The curving shapes of the rocks and bank are nicely juxtaposed against the verticals of the trees. I do think that perhaps the right side could be cropped in some. The heavy dark area of trees and rocks seems to weight the photo to the right.

Love the rocks and reflections, Mark and then my eye is drawn back to the colorful trees. Looks like a great place to just sit peacefully for a bit. I think your title is fine. We have many local icons in the Tulsa area that are not widely known nationally or internationally. They are icons, to us!

This is beautiful. I love the contrast of warm tones in the trees and reflections vs. the cool rocks. I do like Kris’ crop, because the far right of the frame doesn’t feel like it’s adding to the scene. You’re lucky to have this close to your backyard.

Kris, your color changes have turned what was a quiet, slightly melancholy late fall scene into something that bears no resemblance to reality. Although I’m sure it would garner more eyeballs, that’s not an approach that I believe in.

Want me to delete it?

You were able to control what looks like a rather tough lighting situation with the FG in shadow and the BG trees in full light. It looks like your fall colors were a whole lot better than what we had in my area of MD. I also like the slight notch in the MG as it helps take me to the autumn color of the trees and the reflection is a nice touch. I originally thought about suggesting a little crop from the right, but when I did that it seemed out of balance.

I too have shot closer to home over the last year and it has allowed me to come away with some images I might not have gotten otherwise.