Archive for July 16th, 2009



Maine Uber Chic

I got several comments on the digital photo groups to the effect that yesterday’s image was too busy and  lacked a center of interest. Valid observation. What I see in the image is the riot of color and form, which I see as a subject in itself, but I know what the commenters are objecting too.

Short of physically going back and reshooting, this time maybe taking someone with me to stand in front of the roses, I wondered if overemphasizing the form and color aspect of the shot would improve it. I generally do not do this kind of manipulation, as I like my images to be an accurate reflection of what someone might see if confronted with the same scene, but there is room for pushing the limits of the process to make a point, or to create a vision that captures what you saw in the image, rather than the reality itself. This is, of course, what the whole To Blur or Not to Blur piece was about over on Point and Shoot Landscape.

So, in Lightroom I took the original image and applied a technique I have experimented with before on this kind of image. I slid the Clarity slider all the way to the left, applying what amounts to negative clarity. Because Clarity is essentially a local contrast enhancement, this is not the same as applying, for instance, a blur in photoshop. Negative Clarity  produces a kind of soft glow. I then increased Saturation significantly, and boosted Contrast slightly. This all required a bit of added Brightness. Finally, I cropped the image more tightly to place the stair diagonal in a more powerful position in the frame.

The image now is certainly nothing you would see in reality (unless you where operating under the influence…some influence of some kind). Maybe it works better though to convey what I was seeing when I took the image. Maybe.

What do you think?