ON1 Inspiration — Arches National Park

In March, Hudson Henry and I took a trip to Moab to scout and shoot Arches National Park. Like any photo adventure we had good times, we had some turbulence, but we walked away with some stellar images. We both left speechless by the beauty of Arches National Park.

I found lots of inspiration in the Arches National Park landscape. Here I am, almost a month later with “Red Rocks, Blue Sky” permanently carved in my brain. It is a vast playground for Photographers with some of the most alien-like landscape I have ever seen. It really looks like a place that should not exist on Earth, maybe Mars, but not Earth.

Hudson and I had a great trip. We set out with a mission to photo document as much of the park as we could in a short period. To do that we had to make sacrifices, mainly sleep. We would rise at about 330 am, shoot for until 9 or so, eat breakfast and then nap until 1230 or so. Then we’d eat lunch, look at our images from the morning and plan our afternoon excursion. It made for long days, but to shoot like we did, there is really no way around it.

As you can see in the images in the video, there are more than a ton of photo opportunities in the park. However, it does come with its own set of complications when post processing. Our cameras can only capture one instance of White Balance at a time, but the contrast of the red rocks on the blue sky of Moab begs for individual attention in post.

In this ON1 Inspiration video, we will take a journey through our trip to Moab and post process an image together. Please download the follow along image and the PDF.


8 comments on “ON1 Inspiration — Arches National Park”

  1. On April 13, 2017 at 3:33 pm Adam Rubinstein wrote:

    Blake thank you for taking the time out to create an inspirational and instructional video. Your account was wonderful and it sounds as though Hudson and you had a (excuse the pun) stellar trip. I especially liked the image of (double arches?) creating the star effect with the moon. It has been many years since I was there and your images have rekindled my need to return for a purely photographic adventure.

    Your tutorial was expertly delivered and I appreciate that you selected a less than “perfect image” for demonstration. The use of split toning was masterful and really helped to unify the photograph. Much of my split toning experience came from my dark room days and was primarily applied to B&W. With color, I find myself even more curious about the application of split toning and apart from experimenting with every image can you explain your color selections and why? Thanks.

    1. On April 14, 2017 at 1:42 pm Blake Rudis replied:

      Thanks for the detailed analysis and watching. It is very appreciated. Double Arch was a fun night.

      As for the Split Tone. I select my colors based on Color Theory principles. I use a lot of complements and analogous color scemes. It really depends on the image. If it is a sunset, try using oranges and yellows. If it is a sunny day, try greens and blues. It is all trial and error, but also based on Color Theory principles and Color relationships.

  2. On April 14, 2017 at 12:31 pm Mark wrote:

    Hi Blake, I too enjoyed your video and the explaination of the spilt toning. I must admit I have only used it the odd time. Your video has encouraged me to use it more.

    1. On April 14, 2017 at 1:39 pm Blake Rudis replied:

      Awesome! Thanks for watching. It is a powerful tool, for sure!

  3. On April 14, 2017 at 2:14 pm Jean-Claude Guillen wrote:

    Hi Blake !
    Tone, color and artistic effect, I’ll never forget! Besides the beautiful photos of Arches National Park, this video is again a great tutorial for raw photo processing with a very nice result. I do like the fact that each slider move, each parameter variation is purposely intended and explained. And the final unifying touch using split toning is awesome ! Thanks !

    1. On April 24, 2017 at 6:07 am Blake Rudis replied:

      Glad to see you’ll never forget! It works like a charm every time!

  4. On April 23, 2017 at 8:58 pm irajacob@gmail.com wrote:

    Thanks for another fantastic video. Is there a particular reason you would do color adjustments in the develop module instead of the effects module? And what about using a solid photo filter to bring a similar unity to a picture as split toning? Would you do that or always go with a split tone effect over a solid colored photo filter effect?

    1. On April 24, 2017 at 6:11 am Blake Rudis replied:

      You are welcome, it was my pleasure! As for the Color Adjustments, they can be done in either place really, but I like to try and do as much of my preliminary Tone and Colorwork in one spot, it makes it more manageable. However, that is not to say that you could not also go into Effects and use it for Color Effects.

      I have this new theory I have been developing. Tone, Color, and Effects, but Effects can be broken down into the same exact areas. Tone Effects, Color Effects and Artistic Effects for mood and drama.

      As for the solid color fill, that is another great way to color grade your images. It gives your image a smooth wash of a single color and unifies all things tone and color. However, the split tone allows you to use two colors, one for the highlights and one for the shadows to add depth and variation.

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