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Great work Jim!
I'll offer an opinion, which is all it is since this is a taste kind of thing, but in the first shot I find the dodged/tone-mapped horizon a little unnatural to my tastes. The sky/horizon contrast would seem to need to be greater. Makes the scene look a bit painted. Totally a taste thing, but I usually do a mixture of tone-map and gradient burn/dodge to get the horizon looking more natural while bringing the foreground up out of the shadows.
Anyway, both are excellent compositions and so well executed.
And being patient for that possible brief spark of color...Show more →
Hey Ken, thanks so much for your comments and I am glad you liked the shots. As to the first in your reference to dodge/tone mapped on the horizon, neither was done. If there is one tool PS could lose in my mind it's the dodge tool. I tried it years ago and found it to produce very unnatural results. Also, no tone mapping was used, I steer clear of that, pretty much just layer masks and some levels or contrast adjustments is all I do. I think the foreground in #1 could have been processed a few different ways or with a few different looks, I tried to get it to look exposure wise as close to how it was. But to your suggestion, certainly I might try a different feel for the ground layer on one of the other compositions I work on from that evening.
I appreciate your thoughts,