Before/after comparison: hala Gasienicowa

It’s time for yet another before/after comparison + some post processing details (for more comparisons go here). This time the very beautiful Hala Gąsienicowa in Polish Tatra Mountains.

This time I took only 3 exposures at 2 EV spacing, merged them to HDR and tone-mapped in Photomatix Pro (which is Before). Then I edited my image with luminosity masks technique in Photoshop CC (After).

In the image below you can see what layers I used to create final image. Starting from bottom they are:

  1. Background – image produced by Photomatix Pro’s Details Enhancer – to learn how to create HDR images read my HDR tutorial.
  2. Fixes – various corrections, like denoising, spot removal etc. Basically any adjustments that need to be done in a destructive way. Doing this early in the workflow is essential.
  3. Mountains contrast – increased contrast of the mountains using Soft Light blending mode and duplicated background layer.
  4. Midtones contrast – increased midtones contrast using Curves adjustments layer.
  5. Highlights contrast – added contrast to highlights in the path and clouds.
  6. Shadows contrast – added some contrast to darkest parts of the image (mountains, grass) and slightly brightened them up
  7. Midtones contrast 2 – I increased midtones contrast using image created from all layers and using Soft Light blending mode.
  8. Mountain color balance – slightly modified color balance in the mountains area to make it a bit less cyan.
  9. Green saturation – increased saturation of greens in the mountains area.
  10. Vibrancy – increased vibrancy globally using Vibrance adjustments layer.
  11. Clarity – increased clarity of mountains and grass using this technique.
  12. Path clarity – increased clarity of path only using this technique.
  13. Sharpening – added some sharpening using high-pass sharpening technique.
  14. Final denoising – applied a bit of additional denoising in the sky.

Finally some EXIF and other technical specs:

Technical details:
Camera: Canon 5D MK III
Lens: Canon 24-105 f/4 L IS USM
Focal length: 24 mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure time: 1/640 s (“middle” exposure)
ISO: 640
Number of exposures: 3
E.V. Step: 2
Flash used: no
Tripod: no
Filters: circular polarizing filter
Technique: HDR, tone-mapping, luminosity masks
Software: Magic Lantern 2.3, Photomatix Pro 5.0 beta (Details Enhancer), Lightroom 5.0, Photoshop CC

2017-01-17T19:42:50+00:00 October 19th, 2013|Posted in: before/after, hdr, landscape, mountains, post-processing, Tatra|