Blown highlights: how to rescue blown skies using simple Photoshop effects

Blown highlights: how to rescue blown skies using simple Photoshop effects

How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 7-9

How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography: step 7

07 Add a gradient
Hold down Ctrl and click the Levels adjustment layer’s mask to reactivate the sky selection, then click the Background layer’s thumbnail. Click the Create New Adjustment Layer icon and choose Gradient. Click the Gradient preview to open the Gradient Editor and select the Foreground to Transparent preset.

 

How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography: step 8

08 Edit the gradient
Tick the Reverse box so the Gradient starts at the top of the frame and fades towards the horizon. Click OK. Drag the Gradient adjustment layer to the top of the layer stack. Set its blending mode to Multiply and Opacity to 30%. The blown-out sky now has added colour and tone, creating an even exposure.

 

How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography: step 9

09 Duplicate the Background layer
The lighthouse also stands out more thanks to our digital ND filter, but the foreground rocks lack contrast. You can target and tweak the tones of this area to reveal more texture detail. Drag the Background layer thumbnail onto the Create New Layer icon to duplicate it.

PAGE 1: How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 1-3
PAGE 2 How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 4-6
PAGE 3 How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 7-9
PAGE 4: How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 10-12
PAGE 5: How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 13-15
PAGE 6: How to rescue blown highlights in your landscape photography – steps 16-18

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