"I don't have lightroom but I do have adobe photoshop. How would you/others edit this picture?"
You do not need LR if you already own and KNOW Photoshop. LR can do nothing PS can't in fact LR does less than PS does.
ISO 2500, 4000, 6400 is a problem, so is f22. For this type of shooting none of these settings are your friend. M is not necessarily the answer either. Auto ISO is not a good idea for this type of shots. So we know most or all the settings were wrong, let's learn and move on.
I would have used P mode or Av mode. Set the ISO to a firm value, like ISO 200 or perhaps 400 and leave it there! If you want good DOF try f11 or f16 at max. But your exif data did not indicate FL so DOF is impossible to calculate. However, DOF decrease as the aperture gets larger (lower f number). It increases as distance from subject increases, too. You have chosen a poor lens for this type work. Did you not get the 18-55mm zoom with your camera? Use it instead.
Sorry to be harsh but this is how you learn. Don't try to run before you can walk. It might be a good idea to stick with P mode until you get more familiar with photography. When through shooting look at the settings the camera chose and remember what works and what doesn't.
"I've read somewhere the if i replace the f for a 1 and convert to fractions then 1/22 would technically be lower then 1/5."
I have no idea what you are talking about? f22 is f22 all day long.
"I only used Tv for rolling road shots. "
Stick with P mode for now.
"My other question is should I set maximum ISO limit?"
Yes, fix it to a exact value. Do not use Auto ISO for this type work.
"it's currently on 1600 with the option to up it to 3200 but my insinct tells me I should I limit this to 800?"
ISO 200 to 400 is good. 1600 and even 800 is a little too high.
"The goal I am trying to achieve is minimal editing time..."
Yeah don't everybody?
...and lasty..........."I won't be afraid to gut and see how it all works lol."
Another very bad idea. Leave this to the techs at Canon.
"I spent hours reducing noise, touching up my face, despeckling, and doing all sorts to get the colours that looked the most appealing to me."
This might be your issue. In post editing less is more. Be very careful how much you slide the sliders in your editor. Second you might be at the limit of what your gear can produce. Certainly f22 isn't helping since you probably entered some diffraction issues to the shots.
It is always best to get the shot right in the camera instead of trying to recover it in post. However, it is the single best reason to always shoot Raw. I think f22 and a high ISO caused your problems and was exacerbated by excessive recovery efforts in post.
Great discussion Guys.
Bay Area - CA
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