Digital Photo Academy

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Bringing out Reflections with NIK Software

Digital Photo Academy and LivinginHD present a free monthly series of photography webinars on Your host, John Bentham answers many questions live during the webinars. Additional questions, answers and tips are posted here on where you can also view the archived webinars.


Photos by John Bentham, DPA Instructor New York
This series of images illustrates a step-by-step look at image enhancement of a water photo by John Bentham. In the original above the reflections of the clouds in the water are muted and undefined, they need a little work to bring them out and make them pop.


Initially John has made a Global Adjustment to the image, adding overall structure which gives edges definition and detail.


Using NIK Viveza 2 software you can selectively apply change to increase the saturation and contrast of an image and control the density (lightness and brightness) when you desire a more creative technique. Basic adjustments such as warming filters, brightness and contrast controls can be adjusted globally or specifically to areas of interest the photographer wishes to enhance. In the step above John has dropped three control points in the water areas of the photo. The use of control points enables you to select areas based on color and texture cutting down the time required to manually demark or paint areas that need correction.


In the next step two control points have been placed on the dock to reduce the green color cast evident in the wood, making it appear warmer, closer to a natural wood color.


In the over, under comparison above you see the results of the NIK Software. The cloud reflections are sharp, punchy and with some bite becoming an integral part of the photo instead of simply appearing as background. For additional filters NIK Color Efex Pro offers a number of preset filters and color effects which can easily be applied with a single click, or then further adjusted to your liking.


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