Autumn Brook

Well the color has past, but I did want to share my favorite image from this season. I thought it was one of the most colorful foliage seasons we've had in years.This photo was taken a couple miles up the road at a waterfall I cross every day. It was a quiet foggy morning, perfect for flowing water shot.

Autumn Brook

Except, it isn't actually one shot, but rather 5 different shots. Each with a different part of the image in focus, and then all combined using a program called Helicon Focus. By combining 5 different shots into one the entire image is in focus from foreground to background.I've made 16x20 prints of this image on canvas and it really is quite stunning to see so much detail throughout the image.Here's how I did it.First, you've got to get the shots. I was standing in the middle of the moving water, so tripod, cable release and mirror lockup we're all used to keep the camera as steady as possible for the series. Camera was in Manual so that I could keep the same exposure through out (1 sec at f/22). I also used a polarizer filter to reduce the reflections on the water.After importing the images into Lightroom I brought the 5 photos I wanted to use into Develop. I used the Auto Sync function to process this series:

  • select multiple images, hold Ctrl/Command and Sync button becomes Auto Sync, click Auto Sync
  • set white balance using White Balance Selector tool (click a light gray where the RGB values are in the 60-70% range)
  • tweak Exposure,Recovery and Blacks as needed
  • (optional) give it a little punch with Clarity and Vibrance

To make it a more seamless transition to Helicon I placed a shortcut to Helicon in Lightroom's Export Action folder, so that once the images exported Helicon would launch and the images would be ready for the next phase.


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