Back to Friday Harbor for a view of the County Courthouse and I am assuming also the administrative seat for the San Juan Islands.
The top photo is produced in HDR, edited in Lightroom, and then had one last tweak in Topaz Clarity. Below is the same image before I ran it through Clarity.
Below is a single image processed in LR and then Clarity, followed by just the LR edits. I have just started a trial of Clarity and am finding many things to like. It certainly can produce some spectacular results, but like everything else it is easy to go to far. With both these examples one can see both advantages and disadvantages in the way I have processed them in Clarity. For instance, the road surface below shows some of the potential for bringing textures out, but the dark shadows under the trees don’t work at all well. These can be got rid of, I just left them for illustration, and because it was a good setting for the sky.
While I have lots to learn, and some features are still pretty opaque to me; that I can use it pretty easily without once consulting a manual or guide, is a good sign as to its utility. I am using it as a plug-in to LR4, and that is where I wish for changes, minor ones though. Getting the plug-in to work in LR4 was quite complicated as you have to download Topaz Fusion Express as well and the installation did not follow the steps exactly as laid out in the help documents. I found my way, but had to leave it for a day and try again.
Another thing that I wish were different is when it is stacking images, it always makes the Clarity file “1 of nn”. Other plug-ins that I use, such as Photomatix, make the new image the next number in the sequence. I am finding this disconcerting. In Clarity itself, the sliders operate a bit differently as well – when you click on the slider, to drag it for instance, it takes that as a new value and processes it. You can just click elsewhere on the bar without dragging and that seems to produce less processing time. I find a delay in the new view sometimes too – with changes stalling and only showing when going to a new slider. This is probably something I am doing. I wish that a double-click on the slider returned it to a zero or central value as in LR4. Otherwise, I have no complaints, and these are all trivial. I probably will buy a copy of this software, once the 30 day free trial has run its course, though that decision is yet to come after I use it quite a bit more. And find a manual so that I can figure some things out that are not intuitive.
Canon 5Dii, Nikkor-N 24/f2.8 lens, ISO100, 1/2000th, f-stop not recorded, top image +/- 2.0 E.V.