I have been battling with this photo for almost two days - I tried different post processing methods, none of which worked, and it only got more and more frustrating. By the end of the day yesterday I wasn't very nice to be around (my wife can atest to that). Today, however, I woke up at 5AM to take photos of the sunrise, and since there was nothing spectacular going on, I decided to go back to the studio and try a fresh RAW conversion, this time keeping things simple by doing most of the processing in Adobe Camera Raw (mainly white balance, curves, levels, and a few gradients). That, and cropping it significantly from previous versions, made it look very close to what I had in mind.
This is a panorama composed of three vertical photos, all shot with my Canon 5D Mark II, 17-40mm f/4 lens at 17mm, and a Hoya polarizer. As I was mentioning in my last post, Middle Tennessee has been lacking somewhat in gorgeous sunsets/sunrises this year, and I was very excited to take this photo. The original (I may post a link to it at a later time) was shot at a much cooler WB and slightly softer contrast in some areas, and although I personally liked it, I didn't think it had enough... impact. The much warmer version has a certain picturesque quality which I think sets it apart from my previous sunsets.
In any case, I am open to suggestions or comments on the post processing. Although I don't have the link to the original up yet, I'm sure an experienced eye can see through the adjustments I made. Oh, and the name of the lake really is Todds Lake, and not Todd's Lake ;)
Thanks for stopping by!