Reflections and Haze Over Looking the Mekong River

We recently had the privilege of flying into Bangkok, Thailand, then taking a second flight to a more remote northern area,
 Chaing Rai.
Gateway to the Greater Mekong
Chaing Rai is far north and has the distinction of being separated from Laos and Myanmar by the Mekong River. The Mekong River flows from the Tibetan Plateau to Vietnam. 
From our room we could look out over the beautiful reflection pool to Myanmar and Laos.  This remote area is rich in history and culture. 
I look forward to sharing more of this beautiful area, but today I wanted to concentrate on atmosphere, haze and reflections.
These four shots were taken as the sun had barely risen, the moisture laden air was dense and defused the light. Few people were about, it was serene, quiet and peaceful. This land wasn't always so.
Each of these photos have had some manipulation to see how far I could push the boundaries and retain the integrity of the event, and hopefully emit a different quality of essence and atmosphere.

This view of the reflection pool and a bit of the river confuse the it dawn or sunset? I changed my white balance to tungsten which gave this beautiful blue effect, then I notched up the saturation to pull out the greens in the foreground.  (dawn)

 Stepping down some steep steps this is a lower view and other than sharpening, is as I viewed the scene. The natural atmosphere is very yellow/sulphuric.   I love the sun burst peeking over the  foliage.

Near the pool's surface, the sun was flaming yellow in its reflection. 
Without this warm flare of yellow, the photo would be pretty nondescript.  The sun was low enough in the sky to capture the deep green reflections of the trees on the right side.
Elephant statuary was everywhere as this is a refuge for elephants and their mahouts and families.
Land has been preserved for them to live their lives caring for their beloved elephants. Our grandchild were able to spend a day with the mahouts, learning how to care for an elephant, ride and give commands. An experience they will never forget.

This semi-interior photo I converted to black and white. 
The over all focus was changed quite dramatically using color dodge at about 80%. Color Dodge gives the impression of snow and ice on the tips of the leaves and around the baskets.

Afterwards I used a texture from Kim Klassen, Texture Tuesdays to see how a softly colored texture would work on black and white. Though hard to see on a monitor, it gives a slightly mottled effect, furthering the idea of snow.  (Which of course is totally ridiculous...but that is the beauty of photography)
All are processed in CS6.

It has been awhile since I submitted texturized photographs to Kim's website. Drop by, as there are some amazing photographers who regularly add their work.
Looking forward to sharing more of this beautiful, small piece of the world with you. Computers give us such a wonderful opportunity for Arm Chair Traveling. 
smiles: sharon


  1. Beautiful landscapes - I really like your photo edit creating your own snow - well done!

  2. That is an amazing pool! You beautifully photographed an exotic place!

  3. These are incredibly gorgeous!!

  4. These are lovely. Love the flaming sun reflection. And I love the 'snow' effect - always fun to play with processing. :)

  5. Spectacular shots!! So beautiful...

  6. What a beautiful place! And gorgeous shots - they have an almost abstract feel to them, which I love.

  7. I am so glad to be your "arm-chair traveler"! What an amazing place, captured in your amazing photographs. I like all your post-processing experiments - each gives such a unique and different feel for this magical place. Thank you so much for sharing your journey.


Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you take to say hello. Warmly, Sharon