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When in doubt, improvise (Explored - Thank you!) | by Joshua Cripps
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When in doubt, improvise (Explored - Thank you!)

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The final stages of glow from a very interesting sunset a week ago. It was pretty dark at this point so I decided to go for a nice long exposure. The sky transition was fairly abrupt and had me wishing for a reverse grad, but since I didn't have one on hand, I had to improvise: I stacked a 3-stop and 2-stop LEE soft GND, then flipped them upside-down so that the edge of the filter matched up with the horizon. Then I ever-so-slightly wiggled them up and down during the 2.5 minute exposure in order to soften the transition a bit. Unfortunately I still had a few unrecoverable highlights....



Tech Notes



Nikon D300s

Tokina 12-24 mm

ISO200 - Best dynamic range on D300s at this ISO


147 sec

12 mm

Lee 3-stop and 2-stop soft GND Filters, handheld, inverted, and wiggled




In Raw Converter (Nikon Capture NX2), converted single Raw file twice, once for the sky, and the second time for the foreground.

- Global contrast for added pop

- Slightly darkened and added contrast to the sky to add oomph

- Brightened foreground rocks and added some contrast.

- Slightly brightened water


In Photoshop:

- Noise reduction via Neat Image

- Hand blend of 2 TIF files to get a master composite

- Selective sharpening of foreground


Thanks for looking!



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Taken on November 30, 2010