The Making of "Oak Alley Plantation"

How the winning photo of the "Landscape in Monochrome" contest was made

By Greg Boyle in Photo Contests on Apr 26, 2023

"Oak Alley Plantation"

Thank you all for voting in the Pentax Forums March 2023 "Landscape in Monochrome - March 2023" contest, and a special thank you to those who voted for my photo in the contest. There were so many great photo entries, and it was an honor just making it to the final 15. The comments I received were very kind and welcoming.

I am an avid photographer and have been taking photos since 1970. My passion is taking landscape and wildlife photos and, every so often, I will convert a photo into black and white to suit my taste. This was the case here. I took this photo while on a short vacation in New Orleans, LA during Mardi Gras week. I feel lucky that there were no people in the frame when I was standing in this location, and I could see how the light filtered through the trees. This is now one of my favorite photos and is the “Home” page photo on my web site which can be found at

- Place: Oak Alley Plantation near New Orleans, LA. While the alley trees are very old (approximately 300 years old) the average age for a Live Oak is 600 years, making these only middle aged! Also, this means that the trees were planted 100 years prior to the house being built. There are 28 trees, to match the 28 columns on the “Big House”.

- Date & time the original color photo was taken: 02/12/2016 at 10:37 AM.

- Camera & lens used: My first ever digital camera, the Pentax K10D with a Pentax DA 16-45mm F4 lens attached. I now use a Pentax K-70 digital camera, which I love.

- Focal length: 45mm

- Post process editing: Done to the RAW file using ON1 Photo Raw 2022.

- Contrast, Highlights, Midtones, Shadow and Sharpening settings were adjusted to enhance the detail of both the house and the trees.

- A vignette was added to darken the edges of the photo in an attempt to draw the eye into the center of the photo.

The original photoThe original photo (click to enlarge and browse)

The final color photoThe final color photo

- The photo was then converted to black and white with a few more minor adjustments and saved as a .jpg file.

The final monochrome photoThe final monochrome photo

Thanks again to all the voters. I really appreciate your support!!

- Greg Boyle

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