14 photo editing tips and tricks every landscape photographer must know

    | Landscape | Photography Tips | 12/06/2013 00:01am
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    Essential photo editing tricks for landscapes: 09 How to use focus stacking

    Essential photo editing tricks for landscapes: 09 How to use focus stacking

    Pro photographer Jason Theaker says

    Focus stacking is used to gain the maximum depth of sharpness by stitching, or ‘stacking’, several differently focused images together.

    It’s often used in macro and night photography where you’re forced into wider apertures in order to prevent underexposure.

    The resulting outcome is a shallow depth of field, which is often undesirable in landscape photography.

    I used focus stacking in the image below for a couple of reasons. First, the flowers were only a few centimetres from the camera, and even using a generous depth of field, I couldn’t get both the cliffs and flowers in focus, so I focused first on the cliffs.

    Second, the exposure was 30 secs and the wind made the flowers blur. I needed a sharp foreground, so I removed the ND filter to take the first image, and then refocused on the flowers for the second.

    I processed the first image in Camera Raw – and mainly worked on colour correction, Curves and balancing the exposure using the Graduated Filter tool.

    I cropped some of the sky to strengthen the composition and removed a few dust spots. I then copied the Raw settings to the second close-focused image and placed them into two layers in Photoshop, where I used a Layer Mask to blend them.

    This was challenging due to varying exposure lengths, where I had to blend the sharp and soft carefully together. It involved choosing which individual flowers would be sharp and which would be soft.

    Each image is different, and requires careful consideration. Some are simple, and using the Gradient  tool on a Layer Mask will do, but often choosing specific areas to edit works best.

    The resulting image is sharp from front to back, and uses the process to overcome the technical limitations of our current cameras.

    See more of Jason’s work

    PAGE 01 Master HDR
    PAGE 02 Blend raw exposures
    PAGE 03 Combine several photos into panoramas
    PAGE 04 Reveal more detail with Layer Masks
    PAGE 05 Control the tonal range
    PAGE 06 How to make light rays
    PAGE 07 Use Lightroom’s Adjustment Brush
    PAGE 08 Use Selective Adjustments
    PAGE 09 How to use focus stacking
    PAGE 10 Make a ‘Dotscape’
    PAGE 11 Make a surreal scene
    PAGE 12 Light painting
    PAGE 13 The key to editing in black and white
    PAGE 14 Raw tonal control


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    Posted on Wednesday, June 12th, 2013 at 12:01 am under Landscape, Photography Tips.

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