07 Darkening the sky
Now I’ve got the arches looking how I want them, I’m adding a control point to the top left corner of the sky and reducing the Brightness value. This increases the contrast against the warmth of the stones. I’m keeping the radius of the control point fairly small so that there’s still some variation in tone across the sky. That’s the top slider on the control point, circled here.
08 Final details
Lastly, there’s a small refectory in the distance, I’ve carefully framed within the centre arch. I’ve added one last control point to brighten it and increase the contrast and structure to make it stand out a little more.
09 Curves adjustments
All the adjustments I’ve made so far have been localised, using control points, but Viveza 2 can also apply global adjustments, and I’m finishing off with a curves adjustment to boost the contras.
10 Who needs HDR?
HDR is a big thing these days, and too many photographers turn to HDR software and techniques to fix images with high contrast levels. Sometimes, though, I think HDR is like using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut. There are many instances – and this is one of them – where you don’t need to enhance all the dark tones in the image and darken all the bright ones. Often, what you really need is carefully judged, local adjustments – and the advantage is a much more natural-looking image rather than a visibly ‘processed’ one.