After one of my training sessions in Portland, Oregon, I took my family to the Japanese Garden. I’ve been to the Rose Garden, the Zoo, but never the Japanese Garden. This place is full of photo ops!
I’ve been experimenting in Luminar 2018 to give photos different looks. My typical photography style is sharp, saturated, and punchy, so I’ve been going for some softer, more subdued effects. The Orton Effect and Image Radiance works for calming down photos with too many sharp details. I do a lot of “Let’s try this… Nope! Doesn’t work for this photo! Take it out!”
Taking photos like this with a wide angle lens only increases the appearance of the stones walkway sloping down to the left, but the trellis sloping up to the left. Makes everything look off kilter. A keystone correction feature in Capture One would have helped, but when I tried it, it cropped out large portions of the image. Fake sun rays thanks to Luminar.
It’s tempting with a shot like the one above to bring up the shadows. But the deep shadows are what make an image like this dramatic. Sometimes it’s good to let the shadows be dark and the highlights glow.
Another observation, this was near 7pm in the evening, and quite dim under the trees. The ISO in the above photo was 3200, so I am impressed it is that sharp and clean. Loving this Sony A7-III! The darkness was primarily why I shot all these photos at f/4
I used Luminar’s Orton Effect to add a nice, peaceful look to this photo. And I brushed in the Details Enhancer to bring out more of the stones without affecting the wood. I have to restrain myself because it’s so easy to overdo it with a powerful software enhancer like Luminar! I wanted to make this photo warm and inviting, but I had to keep it subtle. Too much warmth can suffocate a relaxing photo!