Back in late August, I was driving from New Mexico to Oklahoma to visit my Dad, who at age 95 was in a nursing home, and having severe medical problems. Shortly after I started the trip I was notified that he had passed away. About an hour later, I was gifted this beautiful sunset which now serves as a poignant reminder of my Dad … of a life well-lived, and now free.
Years ago I wrote in my profile somewhere, “Photography provides a way to capture time and then travel back there whenever you wish. Every time you look at a photo, it can transport you back to that moment, allowing you to relive and remember.”
Recently, I was browsing through some of my old photos and came across a series I took in 2004, back in my Canon days with the 10d. About a week after I retired from flying airplanes for Delta Air Lines, I struck out on a solo photo journey through part of the great American southwest. The main points of interest on my itenerary were those awesome national parks: The Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and Canyonlands.
I am really liking a lot of things about the new Lightroom 4! Adobe came through with many improvements and additions, but I won’t go into those, here. Suffice it to say that I consider it a must have for serious photographers … AND, they lowered the price, too!
The above image is a “single-image” HDR, processed using LR4. Total time in LR was probably only 3 or 4 minutes.
I had originally underexposed this image, using the Fujifilm X100, because I knew I really wanted to get the colors in those clouds, but Lightroom was able to save the photo. The “new” sliders in Lightroom 4 made this possible, using the settings shown here. What surprised me the most was just how much of the shadow detail I was able to salvage from what was an underexposed image. (See the original image, below)
The processing did introduce a bit of noise, as expected, but again LR 4 came through with about a 50 setting on the noise slider.
Another nice thing about this processing is that it seemed to give me a much more “natural” looking image without that somewhat over processed look that sometimes results from HDR work.
At $79.99 for the upgrade and $149.99 if you’re new to Lightroom, I don’t think you can go wrong.