FOUR (4) ways to give punch to your pictures

WE ALL know that.

We see something that could be a wow shot, and indeed it looks very good. And back home, behind your desk you see your picture and you say… “Hemm…”
Because, for some stupid reasons, it’s flat.

Along the way I have discovered in youtube, Kelbytraing, Frankdoorhof.com,… and sometimes on my own by accident, how push up your pictures.
As this blog is not about me but about not loosing time to improve, I will share my tips and this thru examples.

To do that, we need a reference picture, humm… Let’s say this one : Blog - 4 Ways to...-5

It’s not bad, it’s not good… Well let’s see what we can do with CS5 and NIK-Software Plugins.

TIP 1
If you only have photoshop, try this: Open the file, press CMD J (or Control J), go to Correction’s Masks, Take the one with the histogram. If I translate word by word in english, it should be called Tone value corrector. But take the one with the histogram and press the AUTO button. Then your shot looks like this :

Blog - 4 Ways to...-1

TIP 2
Open your file, enter CMD J or control J if you work on windows. Then go to the PICTURE Menu > Black and White. Then you can change the intensity of the colors. Here I have only changed the blue (-139). Press ok and now it looks like this :

Blog - 4 Ways to...-2

Then go the MODE Menu (is set on NORMAL, you find it where you see your layers next to the opacity) and change NORMAL to SOFT LIGHT :

Blog - 4 Ways to...-3

TIP 3
open the file in the plugin form NIK-SOFTWARE and select the TONAL CONTRAST. Then play with the setting of the tonal contrast effect and see what happens.

Blog - 4 Ways to...-4

If it is a little too much : no problem because you can reduce the opacity in CS5. At first did not like this filter. But when you use it and use masks in CS5, you really can up your pics to the next level. For instance, you apply this effect on the picture of a woman standing in front of rocks. Then you select her in the mask and put black paint (with smooth edges), then you will see so many details popping from the rocks, but the woman’s skin remains unaffected. That opens new doors and your creativity will simply improve.

TIP 4
Combine TIP 1, 2 and 3 together. 😀

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