About 20 minutes before I found this tree, I was totally saturated from the rain that kept falling at the bottom of Chain of Craters Road in Volcanoes National Park. In a way, the rain was a big benefit because we had this area pretty much to ourselves and it made roaming around much more personal.

I’ve always loved those photos of that gnarly, solitary tree sitting by itself in a field or on a hill. It’s what I always look for whenever I am out shooting certain types of expanses. So, when I saw this particular tree from a distance, I knew I had found my guy. For this particular photo, I experimented with several compositions before settling on the classic Dutch Tilt. I just liked the way it adds a sense of distorted gravity to the overall photo.

As a side note, I wrote an in-depth article on the entire lifecycle of this photo, from concept to share, in an upcoming issue of Photoshop User Magazine (I’m actually one of their contributing authors). I am bringing this up now in particular because my friend, +Scott Kelby, announced a wonderful new change to NAPP and Kelby Media called Kelby One. As a member of Kelby One, you’ll automatically get the Photoshop User Magazine delivered to your door (and digitally) along with a slew of other really great educational training, including the entire library of Kelby Training classes. Check out Scott’s FAQ on Kelby One right here: http://goo.gl/CQspNl