Dawn Baker

Congratulations to Dawn Baker, who’s stunning twilight image of Sparks Lake grabbed our attention right away, and held onto it a little longer when we noticed the glowing tent in the middle of the lake. It’s not only a great composition, but an excellent example of the “get lost” theme. Read on for a brief interview with the photographer on how she got the shot.

Please tell us a little about yourself. What kind of photographer do you consider yourself?

I’m a native Oregonian.  I fell in love with photography way, way back in high school, but life events – college, marriage, children – kept me from pursuing it in any serious fashion.

A cross-country trip shortly after my last child moved out of the house re-ignited my passion. That was about 2 years ago, and I’ve been working very seriously on mastering the craft ever since then.  My entire work background is in technology and business, so it’s taking some serious coaxing to bring out my more artistic side.  Most of my work is still just striving to be technically correct, but I’m ready to experiment and work more on the creative side.

I consider myself a serious, part-time professional.  Most of my free time is spent taking pictures, processing pictures, or learning about the artistic elements of photography.

Tell us a little about the image and how you shot it.

This shot is very special to me.  It’s from a shoot organized by a good friend, Chip MacAlpine. It’s his tent out in the middle of the lake.  Another fellow photographer and I were invited to come to the shoot. I already had plans to shoot at Cape Kiwanda the night before, then catch the Dory boats in the morning.  Incredibly, we also happened to catch the first big aurora of the summer. The next morning, we wandered along the coast, turning eastward near Coos Bay and heading to Sparks Lake near the base of Mt. Bachelor.

Chip was working on a concept for a night shot, and we arrived just after he had set up the tent.  We all hiked over to the point from where we were going to be shooting – which is on the Ray Atkeson Memorial Trail.  We got set up just as the sun was setting. This shot was taken during blue hour, which is one of my most favorite times to shoot. However, it was intended to just be a test shot to get the composition set for later, when it was truly dark. 

I used a Canon EOS 7D and Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens (which I rented multiple times from Pro Photo before finally buying) and a Manfrotto tripod.

What was the post production process for this image?

This shot needed very little processing.  I believe I only lightened the shadows and added just a touch of luminance in Lightroom 4.

Where can people go to see more of your work?

There is a print of this shot currently on exhibit at the Tualatin Hills Recreation Center at Cedar Hills.  The exhibit runs through the end of September. 

My main site is my public Facebook pageI also post some images on 500px and Flickr.

Thanks for your time!

Thank you! I am truly honored to have been selected!

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