Bright Umbrellas on the Riverwalk & Musings

I did some major travelling for family trips at the beginning of this month, and I will be doing some more at the end… hence my spotty record with the “daily” photos!  But while I’m at home with computer usage I will stay on target….

This photo came about while wandering the San Antonio, TX Riverwalk on a nice, cloudy day.  I saw these umbrellas from across the way and couldn’t help stopping for a quick bracketed set of photos- handheld, so I didn’t know if I would be able to process them as an HDR or not.  Luckily, they came together well in the software processing (Photomatix) and it even cleared up a lot of ghosting from the moving people outside the restaurant!  I was able to clean up the minor problems left over (halos, mixed water issues, etc) by combining the HDR image with the original ones in photoshop and mixing and matching sections.  I really made this vibrant, which is not my usual way to deal with HDR’s, but I LOVE how the bright flowers, the umbrellas, and the reflections of the umbrellas all come together in the photo.  Also, if you notice the slightly “strange” texture to the stone bridge, it is a result of double tone-processing the photo in Photomatix…. something that doesn’t always add to a photo, but in this case I liked the results.

My favorite thing lately about photography and especially the post-processing of photos, is that each photo is clearly unique and is begging for a different result.  Maybe it’s just me, but I’m glad that my photos don’t tend to have a uniform look.  At least, I haven’t noticed it.  When an image looks better as an HDR, I will process it that way.  If it will look better desaturated, or vibrant, or with blur added, I will play with it until I like it.  I am also sure that any photo could be processed in 10+ different ways and still look better than the original, which is part of the fun.  It’s a joy to find where and how a photo can be worked on!

Enjoy this photo and more at


About Kelley B.

I am a Durango, CO photographer who specializes in portraiture and wedding photography. My business is Kelley Bard Photography. You can find me around town, gardening, or on my website at View all posts by Kelley B.

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