Friday, March 9, 2012

Exceptional vision of the valley

Late this afternoon, when I caught sight of extraordinary hues in the valley, I grabbed my Nikon and took the following shot from the bathroom window:

My motivations behind this photo [click to enlarge] were actually a little more complicated, and confused. While opening the bathroom window to take a look at the dogs, I glimpsed the blurry mirror image of the Huillier houses in Châtelus, at the foot of the Cournouze. The two on the right, one superimposed on the other, gave the impression of the presence of a Byzantine chapel with a tower. I realized immediately that the extraordinary reddish light was playing tricks on me.


  1. I'm wondering how close the colours in the photo are to what you saw.

  2. I haven't performed any chromatic operations whatsoever on this photo. The deep pink hues of the limestone cliffs are a relatively faithful representation of what I saw when I took the photo. There are, however, two major differences between the real vision that I recall and the mediocre published image that you see in my blog (after clicking to enlarge). First, I've always realized that my personal lack of photographic expertise and my rudimentary equipment are such that I'm frankly incapable of doing justice to low-light landscapes such as this. Second, as I've pointed out above, the single aspect of this scene that motivated my rapid decision to take a photo is totally absent in the resulting image. I'm referring to the fact that the two rightmost houses down in the lower right-hand corner were responsible for an intriguing optical illusion. I glimpsed them as a fuzzy mirror reflection in a grubby pane of my bathroom window, at a propitious instant when they were bathed in reddish rays emanating from the setting sun, located back behind the photographer's right-hand shoulder, in the direction of Pont-en-Royans. The geometry and the lighting of the scene, rendered foggy by my dirty bathroom window, produced the magic illusion of a small stone ecclesiastic edifice down in the valley below Gamone. After having completed and published my blog post, I was disappointed to discover that this illusion has evaporated into thin air.