davidb wrote:This image was used in a recent competition (SLF Plate) and all the judge could see was the small slither of white disc (similar to that by the loco's number) behind the lads head!
I've tried to heal it in Lightroom but it's such a small area it's difficult to hi-lite.
Incidentally, it was accepted by SPA for last years bi-ennial. Without the heal!
The problem with competitions, especially inter-club ones, is that judges are presented with a lot of good images between which they have to differentiate. Consequently, all too often they concentrate on technical flaws to the exclusion of other aspects of the shot. Which can be frustrating. I even know of one judge who invents poblems to justify dismissing any picture he does not like. Which really does raise the hackles. This is a good shot, tells a story and SPA was right to accept it. Yes, the disk is a slight distraction, but not one which overwhelms the image. It is the sort of thing which can make the difference between an acceptance and a higher award.
Regarding the removal of the small white patch, I can see that it would challenge the Lightroom spot removal function. It is a fairly simple tool which, as you have noted, lacks the ability to isolate the small patch of the white disk. You could try the radial filter for a local adjustment to tone down the Highlights or Whites, but essentially that is a sticking plaster solution. It would still be there, just a bit less obvious. This is really a job for Photoshop, where you should be able to apply a selection to the white area and then clone or heal it out.