Well, trying to blend different exposures in PS from a single RAW I have always found very hard (probably because I had no idea on what I'm doing).
My subscription to Practical Photo (March 2008) arrived yesterday and there was a pretty easy tutorial in there for blending exposures, from a single or multiple RAWs.
- create the exposures for the foreground/main(1) and sky (2). If you are using colour, also create a warmed up version (3) of the sky image (with headland etc). Also create a version of the sky but a little darker (4) (burned sky)
- start with the foreground/main image.
- Add the second layer as the sky exposure.
- Between the main and sky exposures, create a new blank layer.
- Using the grad tool with black selection, create a black grad from about mid-way down the sky to the horizon (or just past). You should now have black at the top and fading to the main image below at the horizon.
- Hold down Alt, and click between the sky and the grad layer (links the two, making the grad layer act like a mask)
- Repeat the same for the top of the image, using the burnt sky exposure to darken the top of the image.
- If working in colour, use the warmed up version of the sky image for the side lighted headland/rocks etc. They used the eraser on the Sky image, but found this easier/better by using masks (now that I know how they work)
So basically you have (in layers..)
4. Sky Burn Image
3. Sky Image
2. Warm up image
1. Background (Foreground) Image
- Black and White conversion with the B&W filter is CS3
- Added some vignetting using a mask created using the oval tool, feather and then a blur (invert the result and and use as a mask)
So, had a go this evening on a single RAW that I had previously used Photomatix to process (using multiple RAWs). Also had a go for the first time at the B&W filter in CS3 ("Photomatix" image was in colour)
All comments welcome, on what people think has worked and what hasn't, with and any suggestions to fix.
Here you go..
Stef, I'm waiting for you to tell me a simplier way of doing it
Actually, I found this pretty easy and now understand PS masks and blending (a little!!!)