Tree of Life & Blue Skies - Matthew Cooper Photography
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Tree of Life & Blue Skies

Tree of Life & Blue Skies

I don’t have many shots of the Tree of Life despite so many visits to Animal Kingdom over the year. Funny enough on our last trip we only spent 1/2 a day out of 6 days in Animal Kingdom. Regardless, the changes they have made around this area though made it worthwhile to get a new shot. The new rock details they’ve added to the foreground really help this classic shot in my opinion. Previously the foreground options were a little plain and this really helps liven it up a bit.

Shooting & Editing Tree of Life & Blue Skies

This was shot with the Nikon D810 and Nikon 14-24 2.8. I used two shots for this image though honestly I could have got away with one. I used a second slightly underexposed image for some very minor highlight cleanup near the base of the tree. Everything else is processed from a single exposure. I used Nik Color Efex Pro Contrast followed by some light vibrance and saturation adjustments. I could have stopped there but I wanted to try and really plus this deceptively simple shot. I spent a bit of time manually dodging and burning, especially in the rock detail in the foreground which really helped add some depth to the shot. Even when a shot seems very simple I try to think of ways I can take it to another level. More often than not the answer is dodging and burning. Dodging and burning can help you bring new character to a shot that may seem plain and ordinary otherwise.

Matthew Cooper