June 7, 2013

A Personal Photo Challenge - Composition Variations

It’s time for A Personal Photo Challenge! “Composition Variations” is the theme this month.

After several years of practice, I routinely change up my compositions of a subject without even thinking about it much. When I am doing landscape photography, in particular, I go into an autopilot mode. I size up a scene before taking the first shot. I also take special note of where my feet are planted and mentally note any barriers and potential obstacles before I start moving around. If the scenery is particularly captivating, I can take dozens of photos in a relatively small area. I pace off in various directions to try different compositions, vary the focal distance (thanks to a zoom lens), and switch between landscape and vertical framing in the viewfinder.

Our recent trip to southern Utah provided me many opportunities to varying my compositions. I’m sharing a total of five images with you for this challenge. I went over my own instructions for three photos, so please forgive me, LOL! I took about 30 photos in this area, all within less than 15 minutes.

A landmark that caught our eye for a photo shoot was Navajo Dome in Capitol Reef National Park, a prominent knob of creamy white sandstone.

f/10, 1/320 second, ISO 400, 42mm focal length

After taking a few shots of this vantage point, I decided to focus in on the rock cliff formation to the right of the dome.

f/11, 1/200 second, ISO 400, 28mm focal length

f/11, 1/200 second, ISO 400, 40mm focal length

I then explored a little bit further and discovered the Fremont River on the other side of the shrubbery, carving a path along a rock cliff face.

f/16, 1/100 second, ISO 400, 28mm focal length

And of course, I couldn’t resist taking a photo in the opposite direction either!

f/16, 1/125 second, ISO 400, 36mm focal length

Now that you’ve seen my photos and read my post, I hope you will visit A Personal Photo Challenge blog and check out the creative efforts of other participants. Thank you so much!


  1. Nice composition and beautiful! I need to visit there some time.

  2. Beautiful scenery and photos Donna. Thanks for the challenge this month. I do enjoy taking various photos of a thing at different distances and angles. Have a lovely weekend. Pamela

  3. It takes a bit of hiking to get photos from different perspectives! Beautiful! And such amazing scenery. Some of these photos almost look 3 D on my computer! WOW! Nice job for this challenge! I'm joining in! Sweet hugs!

  4. Each one is terrific so it's not a matter of looking for the best photo. It's a matter of capturing the sense of place, which you did so well. Thanks for hosting and providing lessons, too.

  5. Hello Donna
    The Navajo Dome is quite the creation from nature; I can visually ghost dancing high up on the formation.
    Walking around the whole area has given some interesting perspective, right down to discovering the river.
    I was giving my daughter who is a police photographer a bit of a tour of your blog and she was quite impressed. She's promised to help me master my Canon since the booklet wasn't much help and then I can really get in to the nitty gritty.

  6. It felt as if I was right there beside you! Loved knowing a few more of your 'secrets', my friend.

  7. Wonderful photos and it looks like you did a bit of walking over rough terrain to accomplish it. The sky is an amazingly deep blue! Thanks for hosting and I enjoyed joining in.

  8. Goodness!! These are wonderful Donna! That was quite the hike!!
    Beautiful country!

  9. Beautiful photos from the Capitol Reef, Donna.. It is a great place for a photographer... Thanks for sharing.

  10. I am delighted that you used more than three photos! My own philosophy of photography is "Take a gazillion picture and maybe SOMEthing will turn out well!" :)

    I will try to visit more of your participants tomorrow...maybe I'll be inspired to join the challenge myself next month!

  11. Donna
    All of your careful planning turned out the most amazing photos.
    I appreciate you sharing your travels with us!

  12. This could explain why I could never be a serious photographer. Too much thinking involved.....lol You however do a superior job and these are stunning

  13. Oh, these are incredible, Donna. So very beautiful.
    *I am a complete loser in this one.) LOL


  14. Well done Donna. Thanks for the adventure, I loved those mountain views.

  15. As beautiful as these photos are, there's nothing quite like the real deal. So glad you got to explore a beautiful part of my state.

  16. Speechless...I dream of going to Utah! Wonderful post and excellent photos!

  17. Love these variations. Great information! Thanks.


Marty, here! Donna loves comments, and I faithfully pass them on to her. Thank you so much for visiting!