(photoshop screenshot in 1st comment)
I'm not quite sure what was going on here but in the middle of my favorite open space there were these strange patches of dried yellow flattened grasses. I can only assume this was man-made ... possibly a planting of some kind? If it were more organized I would have named it "crop squares" ... hehe.
I have been working on a new technique where I create an HDR out of three exposures and then I layer that with the some or all of the original three exposures in photoshop and use masks to paint the two to four layers in and out. Then I use that blend as my "base layer" for processing. I think it gives a more naturalistic less hdr-feeling image, but still brings in a bit of that extended dynamic range when and where you need it.
There's a screen-shot of this process in first comments.
Hope everyone's having a great weekend! I'm experiencing a serious illness relapse, so I'm SO GLAD I went out and shot when I was feeling better and now I have plenty of photos to work on from bed. ;)