The leaves of autumn come out. Took this in my yard last fall (2007); the tree always has sublime colors; though not vivid reds and oranges, there are stately reds and browns. This is wide-angle to show how big the maze of branches and leaves is, giving a sense of awe. The dark leaves at the corners help bring your eyes to the center.
No spot editing was needed; I did some simple contrast enhancements to bring out colors and tones.
Flowers with the sun behind them. I included the sun in the frame, but it goes to white or else everything else would be black. This was a great scene, especially for the deep blue sky and cloud formations that work together with the yellow flowers.
I added a blurry glow while keeping the grain in the sky as a counter-point to the soft flowers. The added contrast pushes the branches to black while keeping detail in the clouds (not the sun), but adds focus to the flowers. There’s more info in my short article, On Exposure.
These are some golden-yellow flowers in my aunt and uncle’s yard. These were low to the ground; I had to lay in the grass to snap this, potentially exposing myself to pesticides and bugs. It’s worth it for my craft, of course!
I added a lot of contrast and brightened the sky. That was the hardest part, because I wanted the sky to be uniformly and realistically lightened, so I analyzed the dodging by setting the brightness level on the image to be very dark (with an overlay layer), and then looked for dark patches, which I’d dodge or clone out.