I just realized I hadn't added an actual blog post since the site redesign, so I grabbed an image from a recent shoot to show you how it was made.
Below is the ambient-only image, which was exposed for the brightest thing in the room in which I wanted detail. In this case, it's the lights at the back of the room. I didn't mind blowing out the bulbs and immediate area around them, but wanted to retain detail in the glass globes.
Here's the photo after adding light layers. It's a combination of overall light set at lower power, and several more focused flash pops on specific areas I wanted to highlight (table, couch pillows, plant, artwork, cabinets, and barstools).
I've also marked some elements I want to remove in order to present a cleaner image with fewer distractions. Those elements are circled below: can lights, vents, security lights, security camera, thermostat, lighting control panel, and some little slivers of white on pillows that drew the eye unnecessarily.
Here's the finished product. I hope you enjoyed this short post on editing!