After dropping Katy off at school today, I stopped by a nearby railroad crossing to shoot some photos. I was mainly interested in shooting some HDR sequences in both directions but once I finished that, I just started wandering around a little shooting whatever I could that had texture. I found and shot several different discarded railroad spikes but this one was my favorite.
The dynamic range on the shot as it was imported was just a little too much so I used the Recovery and Fill Light sliders until the histogram indicated nothing was being lost. I then went over to Photoshop and used Topaz Adjust to punch everything up. After that, I used Topaz ReMask to isolate the spike and used the resulting mask to desaturate the rocks on one layer and boost the saturation of the spike in another layer. My last Photoshop adjustment was a healthy dose of Smart Sharpen in an attempt to make the texture pop as much as possible without producing halos. Finally, it was back to Lightroom for a little bit of vignette and that was it.
P.S. I’m very disappointed in Chrome and may have to switch back to Firefox as my browser of choice. The warm colors of the spike are noticeably washed out in Chrome when compared to Firefox. Firefox looks just like I had it in Photoshop and Lightroom. If you have both browsers installed, please open this post in both and tell me if you can see a difference.