I don’t have grad filters anymore. During a sunset grad filters are very useful to balance the exposure of the sky and foreground. So I used HDR to fix this situation. My camera is capable of auto bracketing 5-RAW shots which is neat. This photo is compose of 6 vertical frames, 5 shots each frame. One shot for the neutral, -1 stop, -2 stops, +1 stop, and + 2 stops to a total of 30 shots to make this photo. I don’t think there is much difference if it’s just -2..0..+2 bracketing. I was just merely experimenting.
I then batch loaded the bracketed shots to Photomatix 5 and used the Natural preset, saved them as TIFF-8 and stitched them in Photoshop CC. I then exported it to Lightroom 5 for final touches. The 8GB RAM of my computer was just about the right amount to do all these stuff.
I was drawn to the amazing texture and patterns of the foreground here that I forgot about the ocean and the sky was just not that exciting.