Contender: Brad Molgaard

Copyright © Brad Molgaard

{loadposition inpage} Photographer:
Brad Molgaard

Where are you based?
Carlsbad, New Mexico

Behind the shot:
This mission church has been one of my favorite subjects to photograph since I discovered its location four years ago. La Iglesia de San Patricio, nestled in the Hondo Valley of New Mexico, was built in the year 1884 and has such character.

This particular morning, the clouds were very good for photography. The sun was casting light, and the clouds creating shadow patches on the landscape. Upon seeing that the sun was illu-minating the face of the church with a filtered light, I recognized this as a critical moment. I set up my camera using my Davis & Sanford-Magnum tripod. My desire was to create a great depth of field to capture a lot of detail in the image. Using the tripod gave me time to study my compo-sition. A shutter speed of 1/80th sec. and the lens set at f/18 gave me the exposure I wanted.

A polarizing filter was used during capture, to create a separation between the sky and clouds for greater detail. The photo was shot RAW and converted to JPEG using NIK software as well as some image sharpening. Tone and contrast was handled with Photoshop CS5.

During post processing, I discovered that the photograph expressed greater power in black and white. The sky appears to be more dynamic, and the entire scene exudes an ethereal mood.

Equipment: Nikon D600, AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm 2.8D, Tiffen 77mm Circular Polarizer.