A burst in the clouds is highlighted by the setting sun over Sedona. I watched as this shower moved towards me and heard the loudest bang of thunder I have heard in a while. I figured it was time to get off the hill.
I love the all the richness of textures here. The roiling clouds, the craggy rock face, the spiky plants. The fantastic light in the background is great too of course. I wonder, would it push the composition or hurt it to enhance the lighting on the plants in the foreground? That cactus seems to want to have more warm light reflected on it....maybe that's just me thinking in painting terms...
Thanks! The foreground was much much darker than what it appears to be, to keep the exposure without blowing the highlights too bad forced me to underexpose the plants and later pull out the colors in PS. Brightening them anymore would make them appear noisy/grainy and not as smooth as they really are.
Ahh, your photography! I'm still in love with it! It makes me love it even more knowing the places it's taken at, because I've been there, and they're gorgeous! Keep up the fantastic work! This one's so stunning!
Thanks, I know what you mean. This was a really difficult exposure to handle because of the stark contrast from the sun and the landscape. I had to underexpose the image just so the highlights weren't completely blown, then used several layer masks to bring back the color in the foreground and the overall landscape. I just didn't want to make it look too fake with a ton of masks.
I completely understand your desire for it to remail "natural" looking, but as soon as you lightened the foreground, you lost the "naturalism." Having an evident gradient like this is actually pretty unnatural to the eye. The eye, afterall, can handle some 37.5 f/stops of dynamic range. Just go for it? Try to accurately expose the whole scene without blowing the highlights.
It is an amazing place. When I was up there it was really nice weather wise in the high 70's low 80's but there were storms passing by so it helped the temp drop. Normally this time of year its in the upper 80's to mid 90's.