After the trip to the desert and with snow melting in the mountains, it felt like winter was winding down. Switching my mindset to spring, I went on a hike in the foothills with Nate and my friend Jon. We visited Young’s Gulch, a trail that has changed greatly in the last few years by a forest fire and two floods. Formerly covered with thick forests, it’s now surrounded by open slopes. I took a photo of the surrounding ridges and this became my favorite image of the week.

Early Spring in Young’s Gulch

Fujifilm X-T2, Fujinon XF 18-55 f/2.8-4 R LM OIS at 19 mm, f/8 at 1/60, ISO 200

Digital Darkroom. Out of the camera, this image was fairly bland. Pale blue skies, pale yellow slopes, not much contrast. I wanted to put more emphasis on the textures so I switched to the Adobe Monochrome profile almost immediately. I had exposed for the right of the histogram, so I started by restoring more natural lighting. Exposure was lowered by two-thirds of a stop. I pumped up shadows (33) to remove the muddiness in the conifers, and brightened up highlights (5) and whites (22). I lowered blacks (-21) and raised contrast (11) to bring back the contrast that my previous adjustments had lowered. Texture was boosted by +37 to add the desired emphasis.

This all looked good, except the sky. I lowered exposure by another half a stop, and then emphasized the clouds with whites (+29), clarity (+28) and blacks (-6).

WIRR stands for Weekly Image Rich Ruh. This regular feature on Das Has von Ruh will show and describe my favorite photo created during this weekly period. My weeks start on Mondays, as does the WIRR. I’m hoping to include commentary on the story, the setting, the specs, or the sentiments, depending on the circumstances.

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