Bleeding Sky (+ 1 rework)

With the ULC painted with blue as well -

On my first trip to the Dells of the Eau Claire it was fall and I spent some time looking for more traditional landscapes involving foliage. It was supposed to be cloudier than it turned out to be, so I didn’t do much in the way of big landscapes.

Then while standing on a big rock watching a mink fish for a minute I noticed this incredible reflection in the cascade below me - it’s all blue sky and believe it or not, the color is just done with the blacks levels and a bit of general vibrance & saturation, not a whole lot. I was under a hemlock with a deep and spreading canopy, so in the shade.

It’s long been a favorite. Even though I didn’t have the right lens on to photograph the mink I saw at the time, the memory of watching it and the fact that I got this and some other good reflection shots, makes me happy about the whole experience. One of these days I’ll get that mink shot! Sometimes they run right under the dock steps while I’m sitting on them so it’s not as though they’re shy. Lol.

Specific Feedback Requested

I did take some artistic liberties with some of the overall color balance by removing yellow and orange from the very tannic water. Does it still look reasonably realistic? And as Philip Marlowe mused, reasonably is a word you can stretch.

Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
Tripod and possibly a polarizer, but I can’t recall


Lr for a little crop and basic RAW adjustments including some texture and contrast, a bit of sharpening and some noise reduction. Color sliders down for yellow and orange. Ps for curves to bring up midtones, lights mask to bring up highlights, some dodging and burning in the water to sculpt it and then a little add color to balance the blue in water over the smaller rocks.

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Cool! The water does look overly blue, but on the other hand, this is rather abstract, so the strong color is appropriate. I could see cropping (from the right)/cloning out that rock in the LRC - just make this about the main cascade and the secondary one in the middle.

A very cool and very original abstract approach to the weekly challenge. I really like the lines and the reflection of the sky in the water. Well-thought-out!

Beautiful abstract quality, Kris. Love the lines and the energy created. Feels like a watercolor painting. Good luck catching the mink. Can’t wait to see those images.

Definitely an original approach to the theme! And an excellent and interesting image with perfect choice of ss. Don’t think I’ve seen quite that pattern in flowing water before. Could almost be an aerial of Niagara Falls. Well seen and presented!

Thanks @Bonnie_Lampley, @David_Schoen, @linda_mellor & @Diane_Miller. I actually did bring down the blues very slightly, but the intensity works for me. And I wondered about that rock in the LRC. I thought about trying to clone it out, but settled for just leaving it dark as the ULC is similarly dark. Maybe they can sort of balance each other out.

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This is an unusual image and quite nice. It is personal but I find the blues a bit over the top. I might experiment with cloning the LRC but certainly not a big deal at all to my eye. I quite like this one.

I like this approach to the challenge, and it really is a lovely image. I have no problem with the lower right corner. If anything, I find the gray/brown of the upper left corner more jarring.

Thanks @Harley_Goldman & @Max_Waugh - glad it resonates. Added another shot in the OP with the ULC painted with blue. I think it helps with the cohesion. Thanks for all the suggestions, peeps!

It does blend in a bit better, Kristen. Nice work!