Eric said: "My next attempt at processing this will be to run it through noise reduction, then resharpen to try to regain the edges. This is what I will recommend if it works..."
It works, though nothing can be done for that big blown out area of sky except getting rid of it.I hav been amusing myself seeing what can be done wwith your image, and the answer is 'quite a lot' theres a fair aammount of 'latent' detail which can be devloped. If you wish I can temporarily post what ive done for you to have a look at. I think you'll be surprised.
David: Yes, I'd be very interested in what you've come up with (and knowing how you did it). As for the blown out patch of sky, I really think people over-react to that kind of thing. I just don't think a blown-out bright spot is often all that distracting. After all, if you look at it in real life, hey, it's blown out. The real trick is recovering the 'latent' detail, as you've put it. Thanks.
modified version Will add further comment post siesta. Currently pooped!
"As for the blown out patch of sky, I really think people over-react to that kind of thing." yes possibly, and that includes me. Small areas of blown highlight ok, but for me this is OTT and distracting/ugly. Processed version was treated for Noise using Noise Ninja, plus a subsection of the freeware 'TNR Digital Noise Reduction' Actions which I have installed in Photoshop, specifically the action called 'Reduce Chroma Medium'. The major part of processing for shadow lifting was done using the 'Shadow/Highlights...' command in Photoshop. Additional custom modification using the 'dodge' and 'burn' tools. Sky repaired to remove major highlight using the clone tool, then recrop and save. Please view the full size modified version in your image editing software at 25 or 50% for comparison with the original.
I'm a bit worried because I quite like the patch of blown-out sky!
.....but I've seen David's 'polished' version and that photo really does look, to me, superlative.
David: Wow. That really works. You have done a wonderful job here. Thanks for the tips on how to do it. Now I wonder how much better it could be starting from the RAW image instead of the JPEG version you started with!
eric, Are you related to this guy?!
Just kidding! I saw this in Edinburgh and thought of you.
Eric. Still very interested in using this photo for the back cover of my novel coming out next month. Please let me know if it's okay to go ahead and use it. The final battle in my young adult thriller, "Sustenance" takes place on upper table rock. Please let me know ASAP.
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Photo taken in Ken Denman Wildlife Area State of Oregon, White City, OR 97503, USA
Misplaced? Suggest new location