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I am not a winter person; I do not like the cold. Winter landscapes only excite me for a short period of time because they tend to be extremely monotonal. It is not always easy to inject colors into a winter composition because there are usually few colors around. The only exceptions are sunrises and sunsets. But it is still difficult to predict great light and beautiful colors. The only way to succeed is to show up for as many sunrises and sunsets as possible. The goal is to use boring statistics to create art.
This is exactly how I created this photo. For many days, I walked the park without ever taking my camera out of my bag. Everything was too dull and monochromatic. On the seventh day, my luck changed for a short 10 minutes. After that, nature was back to its freezing, dull slumber.
When the sky finally opened up letting the light blast trough, the sun was already below the horizon. It was getting dark fast. I had to open up the aperture (f/5.6) and boost ISO (2000) to compensate. But I was not worried because Fujifilm XT2 produces very clean images at ISO up to 3200.
Editing & Processing
It was 8 frames panorama RAW processing workflow.
When I was shooting I was not aiming for a square composition. Only when I opened the image in Lightroom I realized that Instagram like crop would be the most appropriate here.
I used the Crop Overlay tool to change the aspect ratio from 3 x 2 to 1 x 1.
Next, I used Crisp Morning preset from my Winter Colors Collection as the base for Lightroom Rapid Editing. Then I used TOOLKIT to boost the Contrast and the Clarity.
The Lightroom Preset Editing Formula: Crisp Morning (10, 22, 32)
In Photoshop, I cleaned up the image with the help of the Stamp Tool. I also reduced digital noise
Total time: 12min