There's a question that's been ambling around my brain for some time now. When doing RAW post processing (in Bibble, lightroom etc) my 'default' is to apply a slight contrast curve to the image.
When an image has a relatively high dynamic range, I usually apply highlight recovery and fill lights. But I'm wondering if this is nonsensical, because both controls seem to be doing opposite things. The contrast curve 'spreads apart' the histogram, while the fill lights and highlights 'squash it together'. Would it make sense to get rid of my contrast curve in these situations?
What are other people's opinions on this?
My gut feeling is that I should be using both. Use the contrast curve to increase contrast across the whole image, especially mid-tones. Use fill lights and highlights to control the extremes.