We took a long weekend and camped just outside Marble, Colorado. Marble is in central Colorado, one valley away from the more famous Aspen. Most of the famous monuments in the United States were sourced here, so I probably don’t need to explain how the town got its name. We spent the morning exploring the old Marble works, and watched some modern-day sculptors at work.

In the afternoon, we piled into the jeep and took the 4WD road to the mostly-ghost town of Crystal. Along the way, we stopped at Crystal Mill, probably the most photographed subject in Colorado. There was a light mist falling, but that didn’t stop me from setting up the tripod and shooting a variety of photos. Cliche or not, this became my favorite image of the week.

Crystal Mill

Fujifilm X-T2, Fujinon XF 18-55 f/2.8-4 R LM OIS at 29 mm, f/22 at 1 second, ISO 200

Digital Darkroom. I bracketed most of my exposures, afraid that the dynamic range of the camera would not be enough to capture both the shadowy forest and the white foam of the river. I needn’t have worried; most of my HDR photos made here didn’t make the cut. At the very least, I had lots of exposures and compositions to work with. I liked the extra mist that this image contained.

This particular image was too bright, so I decreased exposure (-0.3), highlights (-19), whites (-15), and blacks (-4). I increased contrast (+16) and boosted up shadows (+26) to keep the forest from being too dark. I lowered clarity by -5 to increase the misty feel of the image.

I used a brush over the mill proper, increasing exposure (+0.5), shadows (+10), texture (+10), clarity (+49), and dehaze (+14). My goal was to make the subject relatively sharp, bright, and with pop.

I thought the lower right of the image looked too murky and dark, so I used a graduated filter on that corner to boost the shadows a bit more (+52)

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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