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The Veil

Dead Camelthorn trees in Deadvlei, Namibia, in rare foggy conditions. The giant Namib sand dunes are towering above the fog in the background.

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Dead Camelthorn trees in Deadvlei, Namibia, in rare foggy conditions. The giant Namib sand dunes are towering above the fog in the background.

Every time a publisher asks me for an image, or someone orders a fine art print, the same thing happens. I search for the file on my computer, open it in Photoshop, and think: why did I process it like this? Then I start fine tuning the image, correcting small mistakes, and I end up with a version that is much better. Every single time. The differences are never big, but big enough for me to put in the effort. Some of my older images have been through this process quite a few times, and it’s interesting to see them evolve over time.

I get great satisfaction out of reworking my images for two reasons: the images will be better afterwards, and the fact that I’m working on them again means that my vision and taste evolves. What I thought looked good three years ago, now often doesn’t look that good anymore. And that’s a great feeling.

Recently I opened this image to prepare it for printing, and after a short inspection, I decided to rework it. Sometimes I only change the settings of some of the adjustment layers, or add a couple, but in this case I started all over again from scratch. I think the end result is much better than the previous version from 2012, even though most people won’t see the difference - especially at this size. The large print now shows much more detail in the foreground tree, and the overall contrast and colour has also improved.

What I also like about this phenomenon is that in order to find the original NEF file in Lightroom, I had to visit the folder again and saw all the other images that I shot around the same time, but hadn’t processed yet. So after I had finished processing this one, I ended up processing two other images and two panos that I would otherwise have forgotten about.

If you would like to join us to Namibia - both our 2017 tours are fully booked, but we still have a few openings on one of our 2018 tours.

If you want to visit Namibia, look no further. We were the first company to offer photography tours to Namibia, and there is no better organised Namibia tour out there. Also, we are still the only company that offers microlight flights over the famous Namibian sand dunes, which happens to be the best way to do aerial photography, and also the most fun.

If you're interested in joining us to Namibia, please check out our website for more information, images, video clips, and a very detailed tour PDF:

Hope to see you there!


©2017 Marsel van Oosten, All Rights Reserved. This image is not available for use on websites, blogs or other media without the explicit written permission of the photographer.
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