Bob Wills  


Badlands SD by Bob Wills

January 2022 - Badlands SD

About the Image(s)

I thought I'd share a long view shot of the Badlands NP. South Dakota makes up for its many miles of ugly view with some of the most scenic views in the USA, in my opinion. Like a multi-layered cake, there is an image somewhere in this park to whet any appetite. From this grand view to a rattlesnake there is something for all photographers. I did most of my processing in LRCCC 2022, making use of the new profiles, and masks. I did RAW processing and cropping in PSCC. I look forward to your suggestions to make this image better.

Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens @ 93 mm (62 mm eq) ISO 200, 1/640 sec @ f4.8


9 comments posted




Dan Mottaz   Dan Mottaz
Hey Bob, now we can add 'Moonscapes' as a new category in our "Scapes" group. This is an intriguing image.

At first view, the area beyond the foreground hills looks like a Motion Blur filter had been applied. It is sort of dizzying. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It made me stop and take a long look.

The green tone, particularly in the top half is interesting. Is it copper in the soil or a color cast? The green is shown in the sky too which makes me think it's a color cast.
Also, try bringing up a dark gradient in the lower frame. My eyes get taken down and lost in the lower bright detail. Darkening this should help direct the viewer's eyes to your area of interest.

Your three layers work very well compositionally. With just a couple easy fixes, you have a fascinating and otherworldly image that is fun and interesting to look at.   Posted: 01/02/2022 10:03:07
Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Thanks, Dan. I added a Gaussian blur, but not motion. I wanted the foreground sharper. I'll correct the color cast. I'll crop some of the foreground in my revision. I have another "moonscape" in B&W I used in group 98 without much success.   Posted: 01/10/2022 18:59:44
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Haru Nagasaki   Haru Nagasaki
Hi Bob,
Happy New Year!
The first impression of the image is "Wow!" It looks like a painting. Nice 3-layer structure - foreground mountain shows a crisper detail, hazy midlayer gets attention with interesting colors, and the subtle color in the sky creates mood. The composition works nicely for me.
Two things I would recommend to change; 1. The foreground takes nearly 2/3 portion of the frame. It is too much for me. I would crop the bottom a bit. Pano style might work better in this case.
2. Clarity of foreground mountains is too strong for me. It looks unnatural in my eye. That's maybe why it gave me a first impression of "paintings".
Hope this helps.   Posted: 01/03/2022 20:05:50
Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Thanks, Haru. I am working on my revision and agree with the comments so far. I had to order another laptop as this one is crashing even though it has 32 GB RAM, and I'm using an external SSD with 100GB cache. Adobe is trying to add AI to PS and LR, and I may have to switch to my desktop for good.   Posted: 01/10/2022 18:45:45



Gloria Grandolini   Gloria Grandolini
Hi Bob, I was also in awe when I first saw it. The depth of the image is impressive, and it also gave me the impression of a Moonscape. It gave me the same sense of peace that I feel looking at the horizon in the ocean. I did find the colors a bit unnatural - made me want to see the picture with the natural colors as shot - but I have never been in North Dakota so maybe this is closer to reality than what it seems. I agree with decreasing the space given to the foreground. Also the transition from the white to the green appears a bit abrupt to my eye. In the second photo you posted I feel the purple is too strong and takes away a bit from the harmony of the composition.   Posted: 01/11/2022 13:10:19
Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Thank you, Gloria, I still have more work to do on it, and hopefully my laptop or desktop PC will not keep crashing on me. Lots of trials and tribulations this month.   Posted: 01/11/2022 15:54:24



Cheryl LaLonde   Cheryl LaLonde
Hi Bob
I too thought of a moonscape and that it looked like a painting. It definitely is very interesting and the eye wanders through the image a lot (which is good). I bit of cropping off the bottom helps to pull the eye into the image. What I found troubling when looking at the image is that the bottom was way too bright in comparison to the light that would be coming from the sky. I would brighten the sky and darken the foreground to balance it. I also would use dodge and burn to try to make the peaks and valleys look more separated and 3 dimensional. Your purple version looks too purple to me and too sharpened. I like the original better.   Posted: 01/11/2022 17:46:39
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Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Thank you, Cheryl. I have a way to go yet. I watched Gavin Hardcastle's latest YouTube video and found out Alberta has a desert area with Hoodoo's, which would make a great trip. He really does an excellent job composing his images and has the British sense of humor that makes it fun to watch.
I got one try not to crash. Let me know.   Posted: 01/12/2022 09:21:27
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Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Still too green. How about this, Y'all?   Posted: 01/13/2022 17:41:05
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