This is the second in my mini-series of things I do to help make an interesting picture out of a relatively uninteresting scene. Brown corn stalks, brown wild grass, brown trees, overcast sky.
To begin with I added two graduated filters (in the upper right and upper left) to give some sort of definition to the sky since it was simply blown out. I painted an adjustment brush onto the corn and lightened up the exposure a bit to create a greater contrast between the field and the grass. I added another lower-exposure adjustment brush to the trees on the extreme right to give them a little definition instead of being a dark blob.
I can’t begin to count the times that I have struggled with some aspect of a picture to hide a flaw or mask something I didn’t like about it. Over the past few months I have learned time and again that I am much more likely to be happy with the result if I work with what I don’t like than try to work against it. In this case, I might have tried to force color into an inherently brown picture. Instead, I turned it black and white and did some custom sepia tone style adjustments to bring out the brown and lend a vintage feel to the whole thing. I accentuated this further by adjusting orange- to yellow-hue to the highlights and shadows.
I added a bit of grain to the photo to further lend a vintage feel to the picture, and finally added a -10 vignette. The vignette thing is a trick I’m using with greater frequency. It is not generally noticeable to the viewer but it does serve to draw attention to the subject very nicely (nearly all of the previous 10 photos have this vignette).