This is a follow-up post to my previous post about the Halnaker Hollow Way. I mentioned how my initial expectations were disappointing but I did not go into any detail of exactly what I meant.
Partly, the colours were less good than expected, but more importantly I was having considerable difficulty getting satisfactory images due to the high contrast between bright highlights and deep shadows. It was an occasion (of which there are very few in my experience) when HDR techniques could have been useful. I varied the exposures but the images I saw on the back screen of the camera were of very poor quality with dense, blacked out shadows. [See example (left) of an un-edited image]
As you will know, assuming you have seen the earlier Post, I did find better images later.
Back home, my initial view of the earlier images on the computer screen suggested that they might as well be binned, but then I decided to see what detail could be extracted in processing. And, I was really quite surprised how I was able to ‘rescue’ a considerable amount of detail – see the image at the top of this post for an example.
I then processed the small unedited image shown earlier, and below is the colour version of that file – cropped to improve the composition.
When colour is removed, the image then stands or falls on the range of tones. I have often said how tolerant the B&W medium is of deep shadows and burnt highlights and this, I think, is an example of how those characteristics (which judges so often criticise as failings), can add atmosphere to an image.
Sometimes we give up too easily on images, times when a little extra perseverance will yield acceptable results.
Click on any image to see a larger and higher quality enlargement.