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Old Feb 22, 2006, 9:27 AM   #1
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Ok took this whilst stopped in a laybye on my way home. I am not sure what went wrong with this one as it appear to have turned out a bit dark in the foreground. Comments and advice appreciated.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 10:18 AM   #2
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This is a nice looking landscape with an interesting sky. The reason it turned out dark in the forground is because lighting wise you really have two different photos, the bright sky and the dark forground. You can set your camera (or it set itself) to properly expose for one or the other, it cant do both. The only way to really do that is to blend them in PS or use some other High dynamic range program after the fact. That being said, its not really bad. The exposure is a decent compromise. It would be simple to lighten your forground in PS as it hasnt lost any detail from being to dark if you should want to.

Nice shot of some greener pastures.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 3:03 PM   #3
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You could easily fix up the foreground using Elements 2.0.



Its a good shot.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 3:10 PM   #4
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Beautiful photo!
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 4:53 PM   #5
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The edited version brings out the foreground nicely. Well done, jphess.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 5:54 PM   #6
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Thanks. This one was really easy to do. Using Photoshop, here is what I did:

1. Open in the original image and use the Exposure controls to lighten the foreground. Don't worry about the overexposed sky. Save the lightened image as a new file.
2. With the new file still open, open the original image again. You now have two images open in Photoshop.
3. Using the Move tool while holding the shift key, drag the new file onto the original. The shift key will place the image precisely.
4. Add a layer mask to the image and make sure it is selected.
5. Create a black-to-white gradient on the image from the top of the image to where the underexposed portion begins. The gradient will block the overexposed sky and then gradually "dissolve" to showing the lightened foreground. Same effect as using a gradual filter.
6. Flatten the image.

Total time to do this was about two minutes. I didn't spend a lot of time trying to see if I could make other improvements. But I thought this technique brought out the best in a very nice photograph.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 6:40 PM   #7
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VAtechtigger wrote:
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This is a nice looking landscape with an interesting sky. The reason it turned out dark in the forground is because lighting wise you really have two different photos, the bright sky and the dark forground. You can set your camera (or it set itself) to properly expose for one or the other, it cant do both. The only way to really do that is to blend them in PS or use some other High dynamic range program after the fact...
The diagnosis is spot on, but the treatment options are incomplete. A standard -- and very good -- way to deal with this problem is with a graduated neutral density filter. Tone down the amount of light in the sky, and you will put the whole image comfortably within the dynamic range of the camera. All post-processing will be stuck with the lower dynamic range in the picture, while a GND will give you closer to 8 bits per channel throughout the image


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Old Feb 22, 2006, 7:05 PM   #8
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I agree that using the neutral density gradual filter is without question the best way to deal with this type of problem. And this particular image would definitely be better if such a filter had been used. But when a quick shot is taken without one, what I did is better than nothing, IMHO.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 10:15 PM   #9
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jphess wrote:
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I agree that using the neutral density gradual filter is without question the best way to deal with this type of problem. And this particular image would definitely be better if such a filter had been used. But when a quick shot is taken without one, what I did is better than nothing, IMHO.
Ya, unfortunately you cannot go back in time and redo with different equipment. Really just have to do what was done in software. Kind of scene where you expect wily coyote's nose and eyeballs peering over a rock scheming and drooling over the sheep.
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