The image above was shot in Oman near sunset and I have received a number of requests to explain how it was shot and processed. I hope this post helps you understand the process I used so it may be of service to you.
Starting at the start, I got lucky. This image is not too far off what I captured while standing on the side of the road, sweating in 100F+ heat. My girlfriend and I were driving the mountainous regions of Oman on holiday with very few particular objectives so it was hapenstance that we came upon this scene about an hour before the sun set. This shot is facing East to North with the sun coming in slightly off to the side.
The shot was taken with a Canon 7D and Canon 28-3400mm L lens. The settings were: ISO 100, 235mm, f/9 and 1/800the of a second. No tripod was used.
I downloaded the image into Lightroom 4 and it was pretty decent from the start. (Click on any image for a larger version.)
I was happy with the range in the capture. Here is the histogram for it at the start.
After removing some spots that showed up with the f/9 setting, I adjusted the Tone Curve to bring in the white and black point.
This expanded the histogram a little.
So far, so good. A few more spots showed up and I removed them (I