What better day than a Sunday to trespass on DOT property? That is Department of Transportation property if you don’t have that particular acronym where you live. It was a graveyard of trains. There were piles of creosote treated ties along with the spikes to secure them to each other, and acres of trains in stages of distress. My wife stayed in the car with the mighty Beach (the chihuahua we are dog sitting for which, to me, seems like an inordinate amount of time already). The photo above, which I am sharing with you today, came straight out of the camera ready to post in all its technicolor (or is it Kodachrome) glory! But you know me. I couldn’t leave well enough alone. So today I have 3 Afters for you to enjoy. Or not! My intent is to demonstrate to any non-believers, that their is no sin in post processing. Nor is there but one true image. A photographer makes decisions all along the way and to insist that one should not post process an image is absurd! We process in camera all the time by choosing the camera lens, the filter, the white balance, the f stop, the shutter speed, and the shot setting (daylight, shade, cloudy, etc.).
So, in no particular order (except that I like the first one the best and the last one the least) they are below- each with post processing notes of their own.
For all versions I brought down the highlights and opened up the shadows to make sure there was still information in both. I then adjusted the whites and blacks to avoid clipping. On this version I boosted the exposure and clarity then added a split tone of blue and yellow, then desaturated all colors. The last detail, kept very subtle, was to use the circular brush for highlights on the front of the train and to darken the side of the train a bit due to glare. The final touch was a dark vignette around the edges.
On this version I converted to black and white from the After photo above, then adjusted the yellow slider so that the front and sides of the train were a bit brighter. Then I played with the radial filter and highlighted wherever I could think of, the train, the ground, the sky. Dozens of highlights just to make the lighting a bit more dramatic. I tried to keep it subtle enough to notice but not too heavy handed for the viewer to say what the…?
This was actually the least processed version and probably why it is my least favorite. After my basic adjustments on the original camera image, I boosted the vibrance to 100 and decreased the saturation to minus 90. Again I highlighted the front of the train in spots. And that’s about it!
So, thanks again to Stacy of Visual Venturing for allowing me to- as she said- step outside the box and present 3 versions of the same image. Please visit her sight for other examples of post processing by some very talented individuals.
And if you are not sick of me yet, please visit Monochromia, the place for black and white images where I share the week with others and post every Tuesday night. There are new posts every 12 hours of every day.