Before & After: Cradle

This photograph was taken in less than ideal conditions: in a local stately home during an Open Day, as I shuffled – along with many other people – past the open doorway of a nursery. With no time to frame a shot, or to do much more than simply record what was on view, it would obviously be necessary to make the best of whatever I was able to get at a later stage.

Original Image


Apart from the clutter, the key challenge was obviously to deal with the very strong backlight from the sun streaming through the uncurtained window.

Edited Version


The focal point is clearly the cradle, so the crop was pretty obvious. The lamp on the table gives a sense of scale and also balance and there wasn’t much that could be done about the window apart from cut out as much as possible.

The cradle is interesting in itself, not only for its antiquity but also the intricate metalwork and the delicate lace, the details of which are ‘blown out’ in the original by the sunlight. I offset this to the best of my ability by:

  • Taking down both ‘Highlights’ and ‘Whites’ to -100 brought much of this back
  • Boosting ‘Clarity’ to +55 brought back some more of the lost detail, while ramping up both ‘Vibrance’ and ‘Saturation’, gave a more solid feel to the bed-linen and the metalwork.
  • I boosted both the Saturation and Luminance of the individual Yellow slider, which also helped to offset the ‘blinding’ effect of the sunlight.

ABFriday Focus Week 70



4 Comments on “Before & After: Cradle

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