Late last summer I went back to Indiana for my high school reunion. Although I’ve lived in Arizona for 20 years and consider it home, I guess I’m an Indiana girl at heart, because I really appreciate the beauty of the countryside. I love the big sky and wide open spaces. With my sister agreeing to be my driver, it was a photographer’s delight to sit in the passenger’s seat, telling her to stop here, there, and everywhere so I could take a picture. It’s not often that I can tell my sister what to do, but she loves to drive so we were a perfect match.
I must say I do love the barns in the Midwest and this one really caught my eye, especially the angle of the shot from the road. I liked the lines of the fence and its shadows on the ground, the fluffy clouds, as well as the towering height and the textures in the silos. I knew it had some potential.
Here’s a before and after so you can play along with my tweaks/edits.
The first thing I did was edit out some of the things I thought were distracting, like the white shed on the far right, the telephone pole above the tree on the right, and that white rock at the base of the fence in the foreground, on the right. I then used Topaz Adjust to bring out some of the detail in the clouds and, best of all, in those two beautiful silos. Sometimes the defaults on Topaz Adjust can be pretty intense, so I probably reduced the intensity of it a bit. I didn’t want it to look too HDR-ish but I did want the details to be more pronounced.
Next I went to my other go-to-all-the-time, Radlab. I love Radlab! My intention in Radlab was to soften it a bit, and add a warmer tone. Indiana had suffered a severe drought that summer and I sort of wanted to portray that somewhat parched feeling with a bit of a brown tone. My Radlab recipe consisted of Antique Tone, Boutwell Magic Glasses II, Claire-ify, EZ-Burn (original), and Super Fun Happy. Of course, as with any photo I edit using Radlab, I could’ve spent all day playing, but I decided I had to stop somewhere.
Here’s the finished product. We were very lucky that day to have an amazing sky, with storms rolling through and the sun peeking out here and there. I can’t wait to visit and do this again (especially if my sister is still up for driving!).