Head In The Clouds - 3/10/08
Download some fancy Photoshop brushes to add some interest to boring skies
Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy. I have to confess, though, that I get a little kick out of clouds, too. While it may be more fun to shoot outside on a nice, bright, sunny day under a cloudless sky, your photographs aren't likely to be as interesting as they might be with some cloud cover. And I'm not even talking about the quality of the light. (FYI: A lightly overcast day is often best for photography, because the shadows are softer and the light is generally less harsh.) Forget about the light for a moment: let's just talk about the design elements in a photo. Whether it's a landscape or an architectural shot or just a picture of your friends at the beach, a plain blue sky can sometimes be a bit too boring as a background. Thankfully you can fix this in the computer-provided you're a gifted artist who can create realistic clouds with a paintbrush. There's one other method for those of us less painterly inclined: cloud-shaped Photoshop brushes. You may have noticed a variety of odd-shaped paintbrush nibs included in your brushes palette: stars, squiggles, leaves, bugsâ¦ Well you can get cloud-shaped brushes, too-sirius, cumulus, stradivarius, whatever. There are lots of them available online, and with a little bit of tweaking of size and opacity, your clouds can look as realistic as if they were actually in the sky when you were shooting. The crucial questions: Where do you find these brushes, and how much are they?
Luckily a search of the phrase "Photoshop cloud brushes" will turn up countless results for the kind souls who have taken the time to create these tools and uploaded them for your use, usually free of charge. So when the weather doesn't cooperate (by, effectively, cooperating), you can fix things easily with a custom cloud brush.