I shot this at the Antietam Battlefield which would not guess looking at the image. Just looks like a field on a farm. In fact you can see a barn in the image. The place crosses public and private land often so you never really knew what you were looking at when you took the image or even when you walked.
It is fairly obvious I was in love with the light in this image. Since I shot this several months ago I have no real idea what I was thinking but I know what I saw the images it was all about making it warm and inviting. The light was gorgeous and I’m sure I thought I can make it damn near perfect when I go to edit.
I go through phases where I will let an image alone and others I’ll just go to hell with it and see where it leads me. This is an image that kinda did a bit of both.
The assumption would be this is an HDR image but it’s not. It was shot for HDR but when I did the combine it turned all purple and blotchy and the more I played with it the more I went nope, not going to be HDR.
Ran it through my normal workflow in Lightroom then brought it into Photoshop. Did my curves adjustment and did some dodging and burning. It was all about that beam of light on the right side. Once I was happy with that it was into Intensify CK but focus solely on the foreground and the trees on the left. I got the detail I wanted out of those parts and then masked the bits in. I rarely take anything at 100%. Most of the time I’m around 50% or less when I mask stuff in.
It was then on to the sky to bring out the details there. The lens flare was well controlled. It’s there but it adds to the overall image. So back into Intensify CK and got the sky I wanted and even played with sliders to figure out the opacity I wanted there. Masked that in and was happy.
The final bit was I wanted that sky just a bit warmer. Loaded up Color Efex Pro and did a hue/saturation adjustment and got it warm. Then masked that bit into the sky and called it done.
It’s not a usual thing for me to be fully happy with the image but I really am with this one.