Photog Chris's Blog

got a camera and photoshop, fun times

Down Hill Ride – Walk through

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Ready For A Ride?

Ready for a walk through?

This is one of my latest and I thought that maybe I should show the work flow. I have been doing things a little different the normal, using some secondary plugins by Nik. I first discovered them when I bought a Canon PowerShot SX100is. There was an older version of their plug ins that  drew me into their new ones.

So this shot is though my Windshield on a snowy night, with plenty of salt being splashed around. Thanks to the dirty windshield I got a flare on the lights and contrast killing glare across most of the image.

So lets look at the original, so you can see for yourself. Oh, I did crop this a bit, was some snow and ice on the hood of my car sticking up.


So the first step is creating a B&W layer with Nik Silver Efex.  I chose the High Contrast Green Filter and then boosted the structure some.

Next I copied the background layer and moved it over the B&W layer, setting it’s blend mode to color.

Color blend mode

But as you can see below, this caused a bit of a problem. The red of the stoplight is blacked out, so a Layer mask to the rescue. I simply painted out the darkness.



Getting close to the end. I Copy Merged to get every thing onto one layer. What do you say? What is Copy Merged? Okay, “select all” on you top layer (CTRL+A/ Cmd+A), then Copy Merged (CTRL+Shift+C/Cmd+Shift+C), then Paste (CTRL+V/Cmd+V). You should know all of this.

Okay so we now have a merged layer to work with and we are going back into Nik, this time Sharpener Pro – Output. I really pushed things, bumping up the local contrast and structure. This causes some nasty noise but this pic already has a lot of noise. I only plan to use it on the web at web resolutions, so the noise is not really a problem.

Nik Sharpener Pro - Heavy Sharpening

Oh, but the sky and lights are over sharpened, so time to mask it out.

Sharpened and Masked

This leaves one last step. I think the snow and road is too dark, so I need a Curves layer masked out to just the road.

Curves to Lighten, masked to control

That is it, here is a before and after.

Before and After

And if you want to see it by it’self here is the finished image

Fini - click for bigger


Written by photogchris

January 8, 2010 at 11:15 pm

Posted in Example, Tutorials

Tagged with , ,

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