Drifting around Japan, I caught wind of a rural drum festival. With few details, it was a bit risky, since I often follow leads, traveling days to find nothing there. This time, however, I totally scored. Weather was bleak, as it often is in Japan: rainy and dark. Standing around for a few hours, it felt like not much was going to happen. Some locals wandered the streets, mellow. Suddenly, men in traditional outfits marched toward, supporting enormous floats atop their shoulders -- with other men inside and atop the floats! And from other directions, the same! From nowhere, I was awash in a sea of humans (pre-pandemic, of course), banging over-sized drums, chanting, and singing. It was beautiful, and I still think I was the only foreigner around. I certainly only heard Japanese spoken all day.
Original image (SOOC):
Here is how I edited this photo: ❶ Lighten a bit
· Lifted Exposure (+1.10), Shadows (+74), Whites (+37). The day was very dark, as you can see. Looking back, I'm satisfied with my chosen camera settings. A lot of movement, so I wouldn't have slowed it down. Perhaps could have added some ISO.
❷ Drop Blacks
· Not much needed; just a pinch (-27). I like my whites white as possible, and blacks black as possible, then I back them off a little so as to preserve some depth.
➌ Raise Saturation, Dehaze
· Brought Saturation up (+10) since the day was dreary (see raindrops?). Need not go too far or the photo would look fake.
· Same for Dehaze, (+10). This is the sort of day Dehaze was made for.
➍ Raise Sharpening, Clarity
· Sharpening up (+84). If the shot were just of faces, or if I didn't want a gritty look (I usually do), I would have left this alone.
· Clarity up (+26). Exactly same reasoning here as above.
Japan is one of my favorite places. People are overwhelmingly friendly their culture is rich. Go there (post-pandemic). Trust.