Al Swanson  

Balloon Glow by Al Swanson

October 2020 - Balloon Glow

October 2020 - Al Swanson


About the Image(s)

We are snowbirds and spend most winters in central Arizona. The resort we stay at puts on a balloon glow each year as a fundraiser for cancer awareness. This image is from the last glow. I shot the image from a grandstand about 50 yards from the actual balloons. It wasn’t a particularly good take. One of the balloons did not light up, in fact. I took the shot into Photoshop and cropped and straightened the balloons and then enhanced the lighting of the crowd area. I added light to the dull balloon. Then I brought it into Topaz to reduce the noise and sharpen the lines in the balloons. This is what I came up with.

6 comments posted

Joseph J Zaia   Joseph J Zaia
Very nice Al. I am impressed for the way you brightened the dull balloon. If you had not mentioned, no one would know. In this case we can consider the entire picture as the composition. I like that you left the picture slanted. I think that straight would be too static.   Posted: 10/04/2020 07:58:47

Mike Patterson   Mike Patterson
I agree with Joe and especially his comment about how you were able to lighten that balloon on the left. This image pops with color and excitement!   Posted: 10/06/2020 12:47:35

Marti Buckely   Marti Buckely
Great color and nice job with brightening the other balloon. I am going to disagree about the slant. For me, I'd like to see it straight although the figures in the foreground appear to be straight. Hard to call.   Posted: 10/10/2020 19:37:10

Jerry Biddlecom   Jerry Biddlecom
This is a bright and beautiful picture, Al. Putting a stroke around it would've helped clarify the composition. I don't know what you could have done to prevent the base of the green and yellow balloon from being blown out, but it detracts from the image somewhat. I'm with Marti on this one -- the lean to the down and left of the line of people should be closer to level, and the trees (I think they're trees) on the right seem to be leaning over to the left. I bet this would look terrific printed on glossy or metallic paper.   Posted: 10/11/2020 11:38:21
Marti Buckely   Marti Buckely
With stroke - need to click on the image to see.   Posted: 10/17/2020 15:53:09
Comment Image

Peggy Reeder   Peggy Reeder
Nice overall image Al. Very colorful. I do like the slight slant. It creates more interest. I also think that leaving the dark balloon unlit would have done a similar thing - create a little interruption in the flow, and therefore create interest. I feel that the image is a little over processed. Comparing the original and final, it may be that it has had too much sharpening. Good job though.   Posted: 10/17/2020 15:12:22


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