Arches National Park - Walk back from Delicate Arch 1

This is an HDR composite of 3 photos using LR. I selected and desaturated the gound and added a little bit of texture and clarity as well as some sharpening and noise reduction. Boosted the shadows a little.

After the sun had sunk below the horizon and I had taken all the shots of Delicate Arch I wanted to and for the pano of the rocks next to the arch, I shot some images on the way back to the car.

What technical feedback would you like if any? any and all

What artistic feedback would you like if any? any and all

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

(If this is a composite, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)

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For an amazing sky like this, it’s worth hiking back from Delicate Arch in the dark.

Usually a 50/50 horizon can make an image feel somewhat static. I think it essentially works here though because you have enough things of interest in both the sky and the landscape. In terms of composition, I wish there was slightly more of the near foreground, it feels a bit cut off. Since the foreground is likely the trail, that may not have been possible.

In terms of the processing, the blend handled the exposure of the sky beautifully. There is a very slight halo in places along the horizon, you have to look pretty close to see it though. Lightroom HDR can be prone to creating halos at horizons. This is a case where a manual blend with luminosity masks can create a more feathered selection of the sky. I think the exposure of the landscape could be slightly darker if you wanted to create a little more mood, but that is a matter of personal taste.

The texture and clarity feel slightly overdone for my taste, the LR sliders for these are pretty sensitive, a little goes a long way. I would especially try dialing in some negative clarity via masking into the sky, my preference is to see clouds and sky that are smoother and softer looking. You already have plenty of contrast in the sky, would just prefer to see the clouds softer looking.