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Submitted on
January 11, 2013
Image Size
241 KB


2,148 (1 today)
239 (who?)

Camera Data

Canon EOS 6D
Shutter Speed
1/3 second
Focal Length
26 mm
ISO Speed
Date Taken
Jan 5, 2013 7:55:29 AM -05:00
Adobe Photoshop CS6 Windows
Sensor Size
Firsts by Mashuto Firsts by Mashuto
Canon EOS 6D | EF 17-40 f/4L @26mm | 0.3s | f/16 | ISO 100 | Lee 0.6 SE GND

Well, I couldn't think of a title for this one, so the title is what this image represents to me. Firsts. There are a lot of firsts for me in this image. This is the first image I am posting from my new camera, the Canon 6D (which is great so far!), along with a new lens, the 17-40 f/4L. This is also the first image I am presenting worked on with some new workflow techniques I recently picked up. And of course, this is the first image I am sharing in this new year.

And for all these firsts, I decided to make a trip to Great Falls, VA. Great Falls is a location I have a little bit of a love/hate relationship with. It is a wonderful natural place, in fact it is the only real landscape location I know of in the immediate Washington, DC metro area. But I always struggle to find new and interesting things to shoot when I go there. It can be very one note... either shoot some rapids, or get lucky and try to shoot some birds. I almost always know (or think I know) what I am going to get when I go there, yet I almost always end up with some great shots.

Having seen some wonderful shots from the Virginia side at sunrise, I knew I had to make it out there for sunrise. I arrived about an hour before sunrise and set to trying to find a location from which to shoot. There are three overlooks on the VA side, but anyone can go there, and having seen shots taken right down by the river, I knew I had to try and find a location like that for myself. I am always wary at Great Falls because there are signs posted everywhere, letting visitors know that straying off the path is prohibited, and that it is dangerous to get too close to the river, as the rapids can and are deadly. Nevertheless, I had to try.

About 20 minutes before sunrise I finally found the spot I was looking for. Carefully I headed down to the water over the jagged rocks and found a spot I really liked about 5 minutes before the sun crested the horizon. I carefully balanced my tripod on three separate rocks at waters edge and got to shooting.

Unfortunately for me, the weather on this particular day was terrible. And I of course mean terrible from a photographers perspective, not a cloud in the sky. Realizing that I was not going to be treated to a great light show that morning, I knew my only option was to capture the light as it was first falling on the ground. This particular shot was captured moments after the sun cleared the trees and is the first light of the day hitting this particular stretch of the river.

I had a great time putting my new camera through its paces and "discovering" this spot. I hope you enjoy this image as much as I enjoyed creating it!
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Vaudano Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
so nice !
osagelady Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
gperkins10 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2014  Student Photographer
Hello there! Awesome photo, I am planning on going to Great Falls! I noticed that you are a Maryland photographer, as I am! I would love to have your stuff in my new group, :iconphotoexposure:, I know the members would love to see your stuff! :)
Mashuto Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks so much! I joined up and would certainly be happy to submit my works in the future.

Great Falls is a wonderful place, just always need to be careful, especially if you head off the paths.

One final thing though, I actually moved down to Virginia a little while ago so I am no longer technically a Maryland photographer anymore. And this picture was actually taken on the Virginia side as well.
gperkins10 Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2014  Student Photographer
O well, it's still a beautiful photograph!
PerryDesign Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2013
wooow! it's so epic!
Mashuto Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
John-Peter Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
This is the kind of photo that makes me sit for a time and appreciate this beauty. The texture of the rocks, the light, colors and contrast are absolutely gorgeous. The trees in the background are a wonderful element, adding more to your composition and making the photo be special... A masterpiece!
Great work here :)
Mashuto Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks! This was one of those occasions where I was not blessed with the most amazing light, but I was able to pull all my skill and equipment together to create what I think is easily one of my best works.

Glad you like it too!
Taorluath22 Featured By Owner May 28, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
Absolutely stunning image, love the lighting, detail, composition and movement you have captured here!
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