Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Exposure Rescues

A confession: I’ve made every photo mistake in the book. But, hey, I’ve been at this game for 331?3 years.
By Rick Sammon Published in Quick Fix
Exposure Rescues

Saving A Washed-Out Shot

Here’s a dramatic image of a cowboy and his horse silhouetted against a colorful after-sunset background. Nice shot? No—it’s a nice image created in the digital darkroom with a little help from Levels.

The histogram in the Levels Adjustment panel is actually a good histogram for a silhouette: deep shadows, strong highlights and no midtones. Still, the sky was way too bright and lacked color. By simply moving the shadow slider (triangle on the left) to the right to a position just inside the right “mountain range,” I darkened the sky, increased the color and boosted the contrast.

Try this technique on your lackluster sky photos. You’ll be amazed at what it can do. Just keep in mind that you do need a bit of color in the sky.

Rick Sammon is the author of 35 books on photography, digital imaging and nature. Visit with Rick at

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