On the way out to Hana, Maui, the path is lined with waterfalls. Most of the times there is at least some water in every stream you pass. Sometimes, lack of rain produces trickles and some waterfalls dry up completely. Other times the flow is so heavy with mud, sticks, downed trees and brown water its not even worth photographing.
On this particular day, a nice steady flow of rain the night before produced a magnificent double waterfall. This is not that common, usually it’s flowing either too heavy or too light, but on this day it was just like the Goldilocks story, it was just right.
Behind the camera
Most of the time I’m crouching down when photographing waterfalls and flowing water just so I can try to get as close to the action as possible. For Hidden Light, however, I was on my tip toes trying to see into my camera’s viewfinder. I was behind some tall plants which I decided to get into the image a little to add a nice framing component. I knew I had little time to work with as the sun was getting to the point where it was almost impeding onto the falls.
I had never seen this particular falls flowing with the double waterfall feature and I tried several different ways to capture it. In the end, I decided framing the falls into a vertical image with the plants in the foreground and the double waterfalls in series behind it was the best option. I’m glad I did too, I really like how Hidden Light came out!
Hidden Light was photographed on the Island of Maui, Hawaii in June, 2021. It was shot in RAW format on a Nikon D850 with Nikon 24mm-70mm f2.8 lens. Aperture was set to f14, shutter speed was at 0.5 seconds to capture the falling water in the most dramatic way. It was shot at an ISO of 100. The camera was sitting on a Gitzo 3540L tripod about 6′ off the ground.
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