The image has been taken at a waterhole in the Etosha National Park in Namibia in 2018. Summer temperatures in Etosha can reach around 40° C and many animals try to cool down at waterholes. Elephants cool themselves by throwing cool wet mud repeatedly over themselves with their trunks. As the mud dries it takes on a grey, white colour which gave me the idea to process it in high key.
Shooting in high temperatures and harsh sun is always a challenge. These conditions are exacerbated by the salt pan terrain in Etosha which reflects light. For this reason I decided to increase exposure with the intention of post processing the image in high key.
Post processing was done in Photoshop.
Exposure was increased until the background was softened.
Image was converted to B & W and background was painted out
Normal sharpening and contrast applied to bring out the textures