ABFriday Week 51

Prompts and Challenges


I love my wife. But sometimes she has no idea what she is talking about! This is the one time even Lynn (my wife, the little woman)  is happy I didn’t listen to her.

I was leaning against the car which was parked on the side of the road, just setting up my shot of this old gas station. Lynn wanted me to wait until this girl and her dog passed through. I got about 6 shots off before they entered the frame, and half a dozen more after they walked through the set up. And which shot do you think my wife and I both selected as our favorite?



Opening this photo in Lightroom, I Enabled Lens Profile (which corrects any lens distortion), Removed Chromatic Aberration (which removes any colored lines around the outlines of objects), and cropped the angle (so that the subject did not seem to be going uphill).

Enable Lens Profile, Remove Chromatic Aberration, Crop Angle

I then adjusted the Highlights and Shadows, Blacks and Whites, added some Clarity, and backed off on the color Saturation by -10.

Highlights, Shadows, Blacks, Whites, Clarity, -10 Saturation

I then exported into Perfect Effects 9 and added an HDR type preset at 50% and added Dynamic Contrast.

HDR type Preset at 50%, Dynamic Contrast

I then re-adjusted the angle of the crop, added Noise Reduction and a Post Crop Vignette.

Noise Reduction, Post Crop Vignette

At this point I added a Graduated Filter on the clouds to bring out some contrast and clarity and open up the shadows.

Graduated Filter on clouds

I then opened up the shadows in the gas station with a Radial Filter and, with the same Radial Filter added highlights on the ground under and in front of the girl and dog.

Radial Filter highlights on gas station and on ground

I added a second Radial Filter for highlights across the gas station and the side and upper corner of the metal shed.

Radial Filter for second highlight on gas station and on metal shed


I then used the Adjustment Brush to add yellow highlights to the clouds!


Adjustment Brush on clouds

I toned down the highlights in the clouds and added a Radial Filter to heighten the lighting in the center of the final image!



So, I hope you’ve enjoyed and will return next week for the ABFriday One Photo Focus where we all work on the same photo and come up with our own interpretations.

Thanks, as always, to Stacy of Visual Venturing for hosting this every week. Please visit her and check out all the other enthusiasts who love talking about their work. Just click here! (But don’t get us all in the same room at once!) 🙂

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63 thoughts on “ABFriday Week 51

  1. I love the way you exposed for the sky, so as to retain the detail in those marvellous clouds, but still got shadow detail in post – processing. We are often told if you have seriously underexposed areas, you won’t get the detail back…. I love it!


      1. Oh, I know, ETTR if you can without overexposing and you get the best data. But tricky with a wide dynamic range- what to sacrifice. I always shoot RAW


  2. I always like what you do with cloud detail and this photo is no exception, but today I started to pay attention to some of the details of the other adjustments you’ve made. Today it was the lens profile and chromatic aberration. The changes are really subtle but are visible enough to have surprised me. I’m going to have to pay attention to that on my own photos.

    Thanks for today’s walkthrough of your process.


    1. Thanks, Joanne. The Lens Profile always amazes me. Maybe it’s because the lens I use is a cheap kit lens and there is a great deal of distortion. As for the Chromatic Aberration, I rarely see it unless I look at the image 1:1 onscreen.


      1. It’s just a phase! For years, I used to do everything possible to get photos without people in them. Once I stood in front of the East doors of the Baptistry in Florence, Italy (also known as the Gates of Paradise, by Lorenzo Ghiberti) for almost an hour to get a shot of the doors in good light without people in front of it (these doors are considered the beginning of the Renaissance). It’s a boring photo. The photos with the people looking at the doors are much more interesting.


  3. Great picture Emilio, the gas station is cool, but it looks way better with the girl and her dog in the frame! Nice editing too, you’ve brought the colours out beautifully. 🙂


  4. Great image, Emilio. Not only did you make the right decision by including the dog and the woman, you caught them at the perfect instant. The dog’s front left leg is fully extended forward but off the ground and her left foot is just about to come forward. Had that symmetry not been there, the sense of motion would be absent. Thanks also for the very clear step by step. Very helpful.


    1. Lord, I love the repartee in your comment section almost as much as I do the photo 🙂 And you and Laura with Kumbaya – well, I just wanted to join in! But I digress. On to the gushing. Great before and after, Emilio, with wonderfully detailed information. I particularly love your method of adding highlights to bring more depth. As for the woman and her dog, tell Lynn that I can feel her angst over having to admit that you were right. Great shot!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ll be honest, I kind of glazed over while reading your process, the “huh?” look on my face… but I like your final result! I don’t have an eye for editing, but you obviously do 🙂 I like that the girl and her dog were kind of accidental, but it ended up being a great shot


    1. Thanks, Janna. I sometimes glaze over, too, when people start explaining what they’ve done. My wife just goes back and forth looking at the original and the finished product to decide what she likes. She could care less how it was achieved.


"I take anything other than 'you big pig!' as a compliment." ~ Albert Brooks

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