Grand Tetons National Park as a tourist

June 25, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

I have been very unlucky weather wise at Grand Tetons National Park. Numerous visits have not paid off as I wished for. This time round I managed to get a few satisfying images but nothing that wow's me. At times, I did not bother taking out my gear. But the photographer in me just cannot be suppressed, so out came my cell phone. Regardless of the photographic gear we use, we can still intentionally photograph to get the best possible images given the situation we face. So here goes:

Jenny lake. To not have the water fill 90% of the image you can shoot from a low perspective. The lower you go the more the water will shrink in size. The higher you shoot from the more you will expand the water in the image. Knowing this can be really helpful to minimize boring sections of the image. Besides, foreground interest creates depth.

Not a great shot, so how can we improve on it? We know that the mountain is not going anywhere, so why don't we forget about the mountain for now and look for a better foreground, or something that will go with the mountain? After searching and driving around a bit we improve on this image by getting closer to the flowers at a different spot. Look how it improves the image.

The flowers play a more important role in this image. I am closer to them, making them bigger in relation to the mountain. But what if we go even closer, change the angle, and chose a better location?

You see, moving a few steps this way or that way, getting closer or further, higher or lower hugely impact our images. So don't just get out of the car, pull out your phone or camera and start shooting. Take your time and look around. Let's not take images but rather make images. We are intentional about what we frame in our shot and the image we want. Regardless of the conditions or equipment we can still do our best to get a better image. All of these images were taken with my cell phone.

          Here is another scene from Oxbow Bend. Again, the light is not good as it is the wrong time of day. I looked around and did not find anything better to photograph the mountain with, but some flowers. Going close to them to maximize them in the shot relative to the mountain, I got this image.

Even when we are not photographers and only tourists shooting with our cell phones in conditions and times not suited to yield great photographs we can still be intentional, work the scene, and do our best to get at least a better image that we would have had, had we just snapped away without thinking.


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