I thought that I’d create a post showing how I created an image this morning. I’ve been spending a bit of time brushing up on skills and looking into tutorials recently, so I thought it was time to put into use what I had learnt and share that with my viewers.

 (Mark Blundell)

Generally I use several filter packages, however this time I thought that I would see what I could do without any gizmos.

Firstly I dropped my brackets into Photomatix to create my base HDR image. In this case the image is made up of nine images shot at one stop intervals. I have several presets saved in Photomatix so used one of these as a base and tweaked it slightly to get the results that I wanted for this specific image.

The image is made up of 12 layers, mostly adjustments in toning and exposure.

  • Hue and Saturation: I felt that there greens were too bright so the first task was to tone them down a little
  • RAW Pre-Sharpener was the only packaged filter used in this image, it simply sharpens up the image a little. I could have achieved this with a high pass filter though
  • I duplicated the layer (ALT / Ctrl / Shift / E)
  • The duplicated layer was blurred using the Surface Blur filter
  • This was inverted and blending was changed to Overlay
  • Another duplicate layer was produced (Layer 4)
  • More desaturation was applied using a Hue Saturation layer
  • Two adjustment layers were added, one over,one under exposed, these layers are inverted to reveal the layer below. I use a soft brush to paint in the high and low lights where i think that they are required, or to bring out detail
  • Yet another desaturation layer to dim the greens of the foliage was added
  • Finally I added a vignette layer. Simply a new layer filled with black and an elliptical marque  with large feather. I then reduced the opacity to reveal the detail underneath.

That’s it – a fairly straight forward workflow. All in all the image took less than 30 minutes to produce. I hope that you fount this helpful, please comment if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to help out.