Puglia, Italy \ Photo Travel Workshops and Village Tours

In Lesina, on the Adriatic coast in the Puglia region of Italy, I was fascinated by the white stone streets and the reflections they create at night. This is one of those scenes that 5 years ago, I wouldn’t have even attempted because it’s so high-contrast.

The bright street lamps create a high degree of contrast, and the moon would just blow out completely, so the scene is impossible to capture in one exposure.

Here I did a 5-image bracket, one stop apart, then chose the 4 darkest exposures to combine with High Dynamic Range software, (in this case NIK HDR Efex Pro).

The B&W conversion was done separately, in Lightroom 4, in the HSL Panel, where I converted to BW, then tweaked the luminance of each separate color.

I added some warm tone using the Split Toning Panel in Lightroom 4. My recipe for warming the shadows is Hue 40, Saturation 20.  Finally, I take it into Photoshop for some burning and dodging, and sharpening.

A personal note:  As the son of a photography studio owner, I was practically raised in a darkroom.  I worked my way through high school processing large format film and printing B/W.   40 years later, here I am again, only without the chemical smell.  Thanks, dad, for the great Black & White tradition.

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