11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, One Word Sunday, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography


One of the fun things about having a wide angle lens is that I can create photos that make an object seem like it dominates the landscape:

ISO 500 13mm f/16 1/800sec

I’ve done several things to make the windmill feel larger than it is, but before I get to that, here is the original file:

ISO 500 13mm f/16 1/800sec

Since there are several edits here, I’m going to write about them in the order that I applied them. I started with a crop. Cropping is one of those edits that photographers like to argue about a lot discuss.  Should you crop first thing or leave it till the end? As with many points of contention regarding photography, the answer is yes, you should do one of those things. I tend to consider it on a photo by photo basis. In this case, the crop came first. There were too many people if this image was to be one that was just about the windmill. The crop would be an easy way to remove some of them. I applied the rule of thirds to my crop, placing the center of the mill blades on the upper right meeting point of the grid. The rest of the people were dispatched with the healing brush in Photoshop. Because the sky was fairly evenly blue, the dust spots I have on my camera sensor were also obvious. The healing brush took care of those as well.

The next step was to work with the tone curve in Lightroom. I actually wanted to move the point curve within the tone curve, because I knew I could create a more matte look to the photo by doing that. I just wasn’t sure where the button was for that in Lightroom, so I found this short article with the answer, it’s one of those simple but powerful things that Lightroom is capable of, once you find the right button!

From there I opened the split-toning panel and began to experiment. I have warmed the highlights of the image using that panel. I think that gives the final photo the bit of pop that it needed. I thought to use split-toning because over the weekend I read this article about it. The article is a good starting point I think, for understanding how split-toning works.  Thanks to Lisa over at One Ocean at a Time for sending me the article last week as part of a discussion we were having about photo editing. If you are in the market for a blog that is full of the beauty of the world, hers is a good place to find that.

The last steps in my edits included adding some grain and a vignette. While I often sharpen my images near the end of the editing process, in this case, I chose to leave that step off.

What do you think of my edits? Feel free to leave a comment below.


Added to Travel with Intent: Giant.


27 thoughts on “Giant

  1. I enjoy coming here, if only to look at your beautiful Header. 🙂 🙂 I don’t do most of the technical stuff but cropping I can manage, and it does make a big difference.


  2. “The rest of the people were dispatched with the healing brush… ” — that made my laugh. Nice edits. I was wondering what it might look like to leave one person in the frame, the person on the left who appears to be looking up at the windmill … perhaps that would be a different photo suggesting a different kind of story. : )

    I recently learned this trick about finding dust spots, you may already know: crank up the Dehaze slider in Lightroom toward 100% and any sensor spots just jump out at you. Works great!


    • Yes, I felt like I was being pretty ruthless, getting rid of all of them. You are right, leaving a person in the scene would have told a completely different story. It would have made the perspective of the photo more realistic as well.
      That dehazer trick is a good one. The spots on my sensor are obvious in a couple places at this point. What I really need to do is work up my courage for a good cleaning. In the meantime, that dehaze slider is a good tool.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I adore the edited version. It makes the windmill pop out. Perfection. Thank you so much for sharing your ‘how’d I do that’ insights and for your very kind introduction to my blog.


  4. Thanks for another great entry to One Word Challenge
    A good crop, as the top is usually the part of a windmill that we want to see. I would just like to see the end of the top blade


  5. Pingback: Action – Travel with Intent

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