I found this barn structure close to the road and spent some time there. As I am respectful of the property, I couldn't get real close. There is a little evergreen tree in the front area that really keeps this from being a special image. But other than that - has good stuff.
As I progress through my workflow, I apply a number of 'changes' to see what strikes me as something I want to work with. In this case, I really liked what over sharpening would do. So here is the direction I went with.
Here is the original RAW image:
Focal Length 31mm
Focal Length (35 mm) 46 mm
The EV of -3 really gives a dark image - but there is no light lost. I can work with this. Since I don't use Nikon's JPG algorithms, the closest I can get is something along these lines as to what a photograph shot with the AUTO setting would be.
In order to put this together, I will have to make a few 'improvements.
1. I know from experience that there will be a halo effect between the barn and sky. I will need to find a sky that is similar and adjust it with the same settings that I have done with the barn, trees and grass. But knowing that from the beginning will save me some time. I won't need to remove the power lines and associated equipment on the right.
2. Bringing in a new sky also presents a few issues with merging and the tree tops. I will even the leave canopy so the leaves will look fuller.
3. There is a white horizontal 'something' that I'm sure is functional for the farm - but not so much for me. That has to go.
4. There is a white window between the green tree and the black (Open) door. Sure it belongs there, but in the end it will be distraction. That has to go as well. I will make the small tree a bit fuller as well to remove that distraction.
With the above edits done, this is what I get.
I now have something that I can put through the HDR program. My original thought was to go for a sharp grunge image, really pull out the definition of the barn - and slightly over-saturate the colors. Sounded good, but in practice didn't turn out so well. Probably photo creep - just kept adding until it wasn't what I wanted. So I dialed it back a little. Got the colors and light right in the HDR program and will do the rest later. This is what I have after tone mapping.
There is going to be some halo effect around the barn. Not much I can do with it. What I did do (correctly) is took a photo if the sky while I was there, just in case a sky substitution was gong to be required. And it will be. This is the sky I will use. I ran it through the HDR using the same setting as I did with the barn. This is what I will use.
With the two combined, this is what I have coming out of tone mapping - and ready for the final edits. The final edits included some fall coloring for the trees and a bit of green coloring for the grass. And a lot of sharpening. (Finally got the overall look!)
There it is. In the final cropping, I will cut out most of the right side and some of the grass.
The final image: