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DPChallenge Forums >> Individual Photograph Discussion >> Unfortunate photography conditions
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Showing posts 1 - 8 of 8, (reverse)
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04/16/2017 12:42:30 PM · #1
Last month we spent an epic 14 days in China. I used it as a photography learning/practice experience and overall am very happy with my results.

One unfortunate aspect though is that our tour landed us at the Great Wall at 3pm. The sun was harsh and the smog worse. :( Here are a couple of my pics. I have Photoshop Elements and the Topaz plug-ins. I tried the remove haze option but that looked really fake. So I settled for Topaz Detail and played with the landscape settings. (Stupid I know but I didn't write down what I did exactly.)

Before --> After Editing

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198546.jpg --> Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198548.jpg

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198547.jpg --> Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198549.jpg

Any advice on what (or if) I could have done differently under the circumstances would be greatly appreciated.
04/16/2017 01:26:41 PM · #2
Did you shoot in RAW? If so, any chance to download the original RAW file (take image 4381 for example) so I can give it a try?
04/16/2017 01:29:56 PM · #3
Unfortunately, I did not. That's a definite "you should have done". Especially as I recognized the challenging conditions at the time. *sigh* (At least this time I remembered to set the ISO back to normal after night clicks.)

Message edited by author 2017-04-16 13:30:37.
04/16/2017 01:37:24 PM · #4
It's possible using a polarizing filter at the time might have helped.

I do most of my "fixing" of of "flat" photos using Curves adjustment layers, with or without masks, and the UnSharp Mask filter with "high-radius" settings (e.g. 16% | radius 64px | Threshold 0) to improve contrast (see my "How-to" article River Bend for an extreme example). I have some other Before/After comparisons here.

For your images I think I'd try adding to your current processing a Blue Curve to make the sky bluer and the vegetation greener (adding yellow).
04/16/2017 01:54:58 PM · #5
Thanks for the polarizing filter tip. I'm going to look at the tutorial and translate into what/how I can do in Elements. Impressive to see that kind of transformation!
04/16/2017 03:02:28 PM · #6
I took a quick stab at a cropped version of the first one, with LR and Color Efex pro...

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198559.jpg
04/17/2017 02:05:04 PM · #7
I still fall back to Nik HDR for editing a lot of my photos but I use it a lot more subtly than I did in the past. The top corners are a bit messy but I did this in a rush.
Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198679.jpg

Nik HDR + Silver Efex
Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198678.jpg

And one dramatic one which I hadn't planned on saving, but Nik shows that you've got a lot of sensor dust. (Just thought you might want to know.)
Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1198680.jpg
04/17/2017 03:44:50 PM · #8
Ugh. More like water droplets on the lens. No matter how much I cleaned I still had spots. Thank you for the examples! It's quite clear I can do a bit more than I expected and now have a homework assignment for the weekend to work on those pics. :)
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