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  • Writer's pictureJanice Gill

Improving Your Photos with Photoshop - UBC Day 28

View at Plas Newydd with sky too bright.
Original Photo with too bright sky by Janice Gill

Photography is a great way of preserving memories. When it works well, you are happy to share your photos with friends and family.

Sometimes, however, the results are disappointing. If the photo is the only one you took of a scene, it can be doubly disappointing.

That was the case for me in the photograph above. The overexposed sky took away from the scene, especially as the tree was so dark. I tried reducing the exposure, but the sky was blown with no information other than flat white.

The solution here is to replace the sky.

To start this process in Photoshop, go to EDIT in the top menu, then SKY REPLACEMENT from the drop-down box, as seen in the screenshot above.

Sky replacement control box where you can adjust settings and choose a sky
Sky replacement control box.

Next, choose the sky you want to use from the options you can see when you press the down arrow next to the sky picture in the box. I chose one that matched the colour of the sky in the original photo.

Dropdown box on right shows sky to choose from.
Choosing a sky from dropdown box

You can add your own skies to this list by pressing the PLUS button above the slider.

Return to the previous screen by clicking on the grey box to the right at the top of the half-hidden box.

You can adjust the perspective of the sky with the SCALE slider. For mine, I zoomed in slightly. The placement of the edge is quite good by the program but can be adjusted by a slider again, as can the fade at the edge.

It is worth playing with both of these to see the effects that can be produced.

Once you are happy with the placement, other sliders can be used to alter sky colour and brightness.

Follow this with adjustments to your foreground where necessary. Press OK when you are with your changes.

The next stage is to use the global adjustments from the tab in the right-hand column. Here, I've increased the brightness and altered the levels slightly.

To finish I've used burn to darken the water and dodge to lighten the large tree to the right and cropped slightly to remove the stone bowl to the left.

Final Image at Plas Newydd by Janice Gill

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Oct 30, 2023

so very cool.. I keep thinking about using tools like Photoshop and play with them for a bit but then stop using them.. Seeing how you used it here inspires me to try again..

- vidya

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