One Photo Focus – September 2016

After-Before Friday is an event which allows photographers to share their processed images, and, if they choose, their post-processing steps. On the first Friday of the month, all participants have the opportunity to edit the same photo in the “One Photo Focus” challenge.

As soon as I opened up the image I knew that I wanted to create a warm sunset scene (this proved easier said than done, but I was happy with the result in the end).  These were my main steps, excluding a few basic tonal adjustments in Camera Raw and Lightroom:

1/ First off, I opened the image in Photoshop, duplicated the background layer, and converted it to a Smart Object.  I then applied a Camera Raw Filter to bring out some texture in the sky. Using highlight luminosity masks (Jimmy McIntyre has a great set of Photoshop actions which can be downloaded for free) I created a layer mask to ensure that only the sky was visible.

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2/ Next I created a new blank layer, filled it with black, and applied a lens flare filter (Filter > Render > Lens Flare > Movie Prime) – this would become my sun.

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3/ I applied a Camera Raw filter on top of that, to increase the warmth and brightness of the layer.  I changed the blend mode of the layer to screen, added a layer mask, and voilá; I had my sun. 3.jpg

4/ I used a duplicate layer with a different layer mask and a lower opacity to add the sunlight on the water.

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5/ The scene was still missing some of the warmth that one would associate with a real sunset – so I added an orange Gradient adjustment layer, which I set to 17% opacity and colour blend mode.  Then I added a new layer, filled it with orange, and set to it soft light blend mode.  I added layer masks to both layers to concentrate the effect on the sky.

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6/ I then added a curves adjustment layer to darken the image.

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7/ I merged all the layers and applied a final Camera Raw Filter, where I used a Radial Filter to lighten the shadows around the boat.

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8/ A couple touch ups using the Clone Stamp Tool, and I had my final image.

September 2016 One Photo Focus copy

After

I had fun editing this image – it really pushed the boundaries of my Photoshop skills!

I hope you enjoyed my edit, and gained some tips along the way. I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions on the final image.

 

One Photo Focus – February 2016

After-Before Friday is an event which allows photographers to share their processed images, and, if they choose, their post-processing steps. On the first Friday of the month, all participants have the opportunity to edit the same photo in the “One Photo Focus” challenge.

It’s been a while since I’ve taken part, but I hope to be more consistent this year.

1/ First off, I cropped the image and filled in extra sky with Edit > Fill > Content Aware.  Then I added a Camera Raw Filter to darken the exposure and remove the highlight spot in the sky, which was produced by the sun.Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 1.45.56 PM-2

2/ Something was still missing, so I added a moon.Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 1.46.36 PM-3

3/ To create the illusion that the moon was behind the sails, I duplicated the lower layer, changed the blend mode of the duplicate to Darken, and added a layer mask.

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 1.47.11 PM-44/ I merged all of my layers and applied a Camera Raw Filter to increase contrast and clarity, convert to black and white, and add a blue tint.

5/ Finally I tweaked a couple of things in Lightroom and added a vignette.

Once again, the before vs the after:

I hope you enjoyed my edit!  I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions on the end result. Images from other contributors can be seen here.