I was wandering in the Bisti Badlands in Northern New Mexico in October. Wonderful hoodoos were all around, but when I stumbled across this formation, I was floored. It is perhaps 30-40 feet long and balanced on a couple of rocks. How did it get there???

Specific Feedback Requested

Does this image draw you in? Should I crop it? Does the highlighting of the ‘cigar’ work? Any other feedback would also be appreciated.

Technical Details

1/60", f/11, ISO 100, 105mm. Processed in Lightroom and Photoshop to highlight ‘cigar’ formation.

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Yes, the crop will definitely help! I do see the highlighting on the area you are referring to as the cigar, but I’m not feeling the light there. I want to be able to feel the light there. Maybe bringing down the over all exposure and bumping those highlights in the cigar area may help…or getting rid of the yellow color cast. If you can get some separation from the highlights and shadows will help too. For me the issue here is the light. These badlands come to life in low soft light. The landscape takes on that soft light glow. I think you can still achieve nice results in the light you’re working with here, but you have to finesse the processing. You have to work each area little by little.

Quick and dirty edit attached



David. I think your crop improves the shot. I see your work on the lighting and will try to improve mine. Thanks very much for your suggestions. This has been very helpful.

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