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Thread: What beyond the Arch?

  1. #1
    JPS's Avatar
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    What beyond the Arch?

    Hi all,
    This was a picture taken with a 'Bridge' camera in Malta; before I took the plunge and bought a DSLR.
    My question is, "How would you guy's take this picture, without blowing the scene outside, in the courtyard".

    How would you attempt to set up my DSLR, to get the best out of this type of shot, i.e. shooting from a shaded area through the arch into the Sun?

    I've still got the Bridge camera, just in case I cannot Master this grown-up camera. lol
    All C&C welcome.


    What beyond the Arch?

  2. #2
    FrankMi's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    Hi John, nice shot, I like it!

    I'd Exposure Bracket the shot and either tonemap or just blend in the shadows and blown highlights from the bracketed layers.

    If this is the only image available, I'd use ACR on the JPG and make two copies, one overexposed and one under then merge as above in the layers. Please let me know if you need more detail.

  3. #3
    JPS's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    Hi Frank,
    thanks for the advice.
    Yes, because this was taken with a Bridge camera I only have the JPG.
    If I understand you correctly, I should open the origional picture using ACR, then over and under expose the origional JPG, then copy them into seperate layers in Photoshop Elements 9.
    Now I have the 3 layers; now comes the bit I'm not sure of, how do I merge them to give the desired effect?

    Thanks in advanced for your help.

  4. #4
    dje's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    I like it too John. I'm sure Frank's advice will work well but if you are looking for a simple improvement you could try the Shadows/Highlights adjustment.

    Dave

  5. #5
    Momo's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    Hi John,

    I would definitely recommend shooting RAW as opposed to JPEG. But, if you're not into tinkering with photos in a RAW processor, then by all means shoot JPEG. Just know that RAW files would allow you to more easily pull in the blown out areas and also any spots that are underexposed.

    If this were my shot, I would have done the usual 3 bracket exposure on a tripod ... -2,0,+2 EV and then tonemapped them in Photomatix with further processing in Photoshop.

  6. #6
    FrankMi's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    Quote Originally Posted by JPS View Post
    Hi Frank,
    thanks for the advice.
    Yes, because this was taken with a Bridge camera I only have the JPG.
    If I understand you correctly, I should open the origional picture using ACR, then over and under expose the origional JPG, then copy them into seperate layers in Photoshop Elements 9.
    Now I have the 3 layers; now comes the bit I'm not sure of, how do I merge them to give the desired effect?

    Thanks in advanced for your help.
    Hi John. I should have suggested adjusting a copy of the original using ACR for the best image with no overly dark shadows (Fill Light) or blown highlights (Recovery) and save the new JPG. Then make two copies from that image and open each in ACR to create the over and under exposed versions.

    To merge the three copies, you'll need to make a Layer mask and use the mask to do the blending. Here is one of many tutorials on how to use a Layer Mask in Elements 9.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sw6dpgmQrYc

    A quick search in the web will get you many others. Also, if Elements works like Photoshop, you can just click on 'Help' and type in 'Layer Masks' and Adobe will give you tutorials as well.

    In our case, use the 'normal' image and layer mask to reveal the underexposed layer image and brush in the mask to reveal the sunlit courtyard pavers, for example. Save the work by creating a new image from the Visible Layers. In Elements, use CTL+ALT+Shift+E as in this short video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UeCbePEBlOE

    One this is saved, do the same thing starting with the new merged layer but this time use the overexposed image layer to blend in any shadows you want to see more detail in such as above the arch.

    The process works the same way in Photoshop.

    Hope this helps!
    Last edited by FrankMi; 27th May 2012 at 01:00 PM.

  7. #7
    JPS's Avatar
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    Re: What beyond the Arch?

    Thanks Frank,
    I think I've got it now. I'll practice and hopefully get some better results.

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