At first, you might think this picture is a modern art painting or even a cartoon, but it’s actually a well-timed photograph!
Taken by Frans Lanting for National Geographic, the image features the Dead Vlei, a white clay plain found in the Namibian desert. It’s hard to fathom how such a dreamlike image could be real, but it’s all a matter of the right person at the right place and time.
“It was made at dawn when the warm light of the morning sun was illuminating a huge red sand dune dotted with white grasses while the white floor of the clay pan was still in shade. It looks blue because it reflects the colour of the sky above,” said Lanting.
“Because of the contrast between the shady foreground and the sunlit background, I used a two-stop graduated filter which reduced the contrast,” he added.
“The perfect moment came when the sun reached all the way down to the bottom of the sand dune just before it reached the desert floor. I used a long telephoto lens and stopped it all the way down to compress the perspective.”