Counterparts

Counterparts

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giuseppe-sapori-counterparts

Sunset at Tre Cime of Lavaredo, I took this photo on the way back from the refuge Locatelli, in a lucky day of October where there was a beautiful and warm weather. This side view is just one of hundreds of pictures I took during sunset and is the result of a vertical stitch between the foreground and the Tre Cime peaks. Since my D-800 was broken and I was with a d90, and thankfully :), I tried to expand the visual field and give more depth to the image, I take 3 bracketed shots for the Tre Cime and 3 for the foreground

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

This time instead of stitching the images before the digital blending I did it as first thing of the mountains and then of the foreground, only later did I sticth, this is because by doing the stitching before the images alignment was bad. The digital blending of the images was done with luminosity masks launched from my panel that i suggest to download it even if you didn’t

Starting frome the blended image, I applied and worked dodge and burn the mountains and foreground. I intensified the sunset colors using the brush method that you can find in this guide, and launched orton effect to add a glow effect to the photo.

With the help of luminosity masks i added some contrast applying curves to darks 3 masks and changing the blending mode to soft light. Final interventions was adding more details, with high details filter into TTS Fast Panel, a small vignette effect and a bit more contrast using levels

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-90

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Four Exposures (-1; 0; +1)

ISO: 100 at f/10

Software: Photoshop CC2017

Extensions: TTS Fast Panel


The Path of Glory

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St. Angelo bridge shot taken from the banks of the Tevere river, this is a picture I took several times and is one spot that I like very much, in fact, this area is easy to find, a good point without the thousands of tourists who are in any other spot of Rome. This time I chose a time of golden hour on enough enlightened, I also benefited from good reflexes on the river and a shoal inside, rarely seen in the winter months. I would lower this to keep me with the shot but there were too many weeds at the base of the river, in fact some of them you can see the bottom 🙂

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I blended the shots togheder, discarding the most overexposed exposure. With luminosity masks, I make some adjustments to the frame adding more contrast with darks and midtones masks. Using Fast Panel I increased details, applied orton effect decreasing opacity around 8% and applying dodge and burn to lighten some parts of the bridge and darken the castle. With hue/saturation I adjust the yellows and make some color adjustments.

I also used camera raw to increase selectively clarity around bridge, reflection and shoal. As final I applied a small vignette selectively removing darks in the highlights as to increase darkness and contrasts only in the foreground, because otherwise, the sky would take a dark blue variant that would be surreal. I hope you find this information useful, are always welcome your opinions on how you’d worked this photo

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-3; -2; -1; 0; +1; +2; +3)

ISO: 100 at f/11

Software: Photoshop CC2017

Extensions: TTS Fast Panel


Lights and Bounds

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Photo taken in the port area of Skopelos, from here it is a small rocky beach behind a walkway from the port. I made this photo at sunset from a series of bracketed shot, where I applied focus stacking between the rocks that are in the foreground and the hill which is seen in the background. I take 5 bracketed shots per series but I decided to use only 3 for it

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I opened my bracketed shots series in Photoshop and I align them for blending (for more information about focus stacking blending please read this article). At the end of this process, I create a series of three shots aligned and ready for edits. I applied luminosity masks to use darks to lighten the foreground, then increased contrast with midtones 3 applied to curves

Using my panel I launched dodge and burn to make some adjustments on the rocks and on the sea, then I launched orton effect to increase glow and darken the image. Next, I create some color correction using lab color and hue/saturation to adjust blues and yellows, then increased contrast again to have more highlighs and more darkenss on the foreground. As always In applied details and sharpness to the entire frame, without including the sea. As a final touch  using camera raw I lowered the exposure and raised slightly up the shadows

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2) x2

ISO: 100 at f/7,1

Software: Photoshop CC2017

Extensions: TTS Fast Panel


The Pool

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Second image from Skiathos, this location is not far from that of my last post, always along the harbor. The view facing the sunset was without any doubt the best so I decided to place me in front of this small cove. The continuous passage of the boats that were directed towards the port of Skiathos has facilitated much what I wanted to do, that is to take as much as possible water movement. Not having a ND filter with me on that occasion I tried to stretch the exposure as much as possible using exposure compensation.

At the passage of a ferry I risked to water all my equipment because it came a crazy wave and I was able to bring out the tripod just a moments before 🙂 I captured 5 bracketed shots for the base shot and then I started doing several shots to capture the waves until I found the longer and softer

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

The shot with long exposure had absorbed much of the foreground I used it as a starting base exposure, I blended the sky using Luminosity Masks applied to the darker exposure. Always using the darker exposures I darken he rocks just to the bottom of the image using manual blend. With Camera Raw I adjusted the contrast and highlights, this time also increasing the value of Clarity usually do not use, but this case the foreground need it. I used the function Dodge and Burn, High Details and Lab Color that you find in my TTS Fast Panel. As final touch I increased sunset color and a little vignetting effect using Color Efex Pro

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2)

ISO: 100 at f/7,1

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Extensions: TTS Fast Panel

Plugin: Color Efex Pro


Sunset at the Harbor

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From Aegina to Skiathos, this is a beautiful and famous island which is located in the archipelago of the Cyclades. Much of Skiathos island fame is the fact that it was the main location of the famous musical “Mamma Mia”, where exactly here were filmed most scenes of the movie. This is the port of the city island taken over by a small hill in front of

I take several shots on this hill since they had a favorable position towards the sunset and the city harbor. I made a small stack of photographs to take as many as possible in the frame rocks and make the image more depth

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I start as usual using Luminosity Masks to blend all the bracketed exposures taken in the port of Skiathos.  When I got a final image I combined this with the image I had taken further down with rocks to merge them together to get such a small vertorama. With the resulting “basic” image of  I started to change the lights, shadows, highlights the Curves tool inside Camera Raw

Using  LAB Color I pushed up vibrance and yellows color, then I applied Dodge and Burn tool on the rocks to make them brighter. I increased details in the whole frame, then, with a small gaussian blur, I removed a small noise in the water. For this I applied gaussian blur with a black layer mask (hidden), with a white brush I painted all the water to smooth it. Finally I increased the contrast using curves tool  and created a slight vignetting to give more prominence to the central area

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2)

ISO: 100 at f/7,1

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Plugin: Color Efex Pro


When The Sun Goes Sleep

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As I wrote in my previous post I took a lot of photos in the archaeological area of Aphaia. With that beautiful temple all for me I could not portray the temple in different angles and this is one of those romantic photos made. I tried several angles until I founded one where the sunlight filtered through the columns of the Temple of Afaia. I take 5 bracketed shots of which the last holding my finger in front of the camera in the direction of the sun to avoid too many lens flares. The finger at the point of greatest sunlight is a very effective method to prevent that lens flare ruin all the shots. This little trick is to take advantage of the increased exposure to the sun covered by the finger and without lens flare, to erase all those formed in any previous exposures taken.

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I started Blending the exposures using Luminosity Masks, to brighten the foreground and the columns of the Temple and I apply the adaptive wide angle Photoshop function to correct the perspective of the Temple. I removed all the lens flare using the overexposed shot lightened slightly the sunlight, after I increased contrasts and yellow colors to the whole picture. I take a little Dodge and Burn over the underexposed areas of the frame and then I increased details of the picture using high frequency separation method. The final touch was adding a final LAB Color to push up all the colors of the picture, I use a black brush to mask out all the excessive red spikes of the sun through the columns.

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2)

ISO: 100 at f/9

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Plugin: Color Efex Pro

 


Afaia

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During my stay in Aegina I went to the famous Temple of Aphaia, is the main attraction of this Greek island and I must admit that it is a wonderful spot. The Temple of Aphaia is located on a top a promontory overlooking the cliffs of Agia Marina, get there at sunset was not easy because of the Greek island public transport had a fairly limited hours and I found myself without a car. So I decided to climb by bus and then get off to Agia Marina on foot through a small mountain path. Whereas at that time there were no more public transport who got in around the archaeological site was almost desert. So I had this spot all to myself till the complete closing time of the place 🙂 As I said I did a lot of photos and this is the frontal view of the Temple of Aphaia. I made a bracketed series of about 5 shots but I’ve used less than half in my final image the more overexposed one used  to lighten the foreground that was so dark

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

Starting from the correct exposure I focused to clear shadows of contrasts of the strong sun. I used Luminance Masks to blend the two layers. Always with the help of overexposed shot I cleared the sun’s rays to make a greater impact. I used the Lab Color with 60% opacity and then stepped up yellow using Hue/Saturation. Then I take a small Dodge and Burn on the rocks and on the temple itself and then I increased the details throughout the frame. Finally I slightly increased the contrast to give more prominence to the sky and added a small vignetting with Darken Lighten Center in Color Efex Pro at 35%

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2)

ISO: 100 at f/9

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Plugin: Color Efex Pro


A Secret Place

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After days spent in Athens I moved on a island that is located in front of Athens… the island of Aegina. Is a peaceful island away from mass tourism, where there are mainly locals and Athenians who come to spend their holidays on an island easily accessible. When I took this picture I was in the island’s capital “Egina” which of course is the reference center of the whole area. I found this micro beach on the road leading out of the center of Aegina on which there was this small dock on the sea.

I take some shots using bracketing over the area to have good exposure for the sky and clouds and I shot a exposure to get a strong focus on the foregroud. With the passing of time that carried on the increasingly light toward the blue hour, I started doing more and more tests with exposure compensation up to that have not come into a state of low light. I set a value of -5 exposure compensation on my D800 with a 20-second exposure time, I managed to get good results (I know I have to decide to buy photo filters) 🙂

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I start my edit with the sky, using the Luminosity Masks it was very easy to bring down the exposure of the sky without affecting the entire image. Then was the turn of a Dodge and Burn intervention to clean water from reflections and to brighten other part of the frame too darks. With the help of Color Lookup adjustment layer I added two effect to the frame, I am talking about Foggy Night and Drop Blues using a lower opacity 15-20% to give a small surreal effect to the frame. Using this technique I give more impact to the sunset light on the edge. As a final step I increased the details on the entire imag and contrasts, again making use of Luminosity Masks combined with the curves tool. For the last touch I use Color Efex pro filter to add a small vignette using Darken Lighten Center filter.

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2) + Long exposures shots

ISO: 100 at f/11

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Plugin: Color Efex Pro


Lycabettus

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giuseppe-sapori-lycabettus

The one on the far right is the Mount Lycabettus, a hill where you can admire a beautiful view of Athens as well as having a nice restaurant at its top. It is easily reached by a funicular from Kolonaki, another beautiful area of Athens. Mount Lycabettus is one of the Greek capital attractions, and there are also of course I was in, but just as I did to the Acropolis also in this case I decided to portray the mountain from the outside, overlooking the city. We’re at in the same area where I took Acropolis that you find in my previous post, I made the image from 3 exposures.

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I started as usual using the luminance masks to combine different exposures together, I then stepped up hightlights for the sky and contrast for the city always using luminosity masks. With the help of Color Efex Pro I applied Skylight filter for intensifying the shade of yellow reducing the opacity around 60%. Then, it was the turn of  details pushed up selectively and of a soft dodge and burn effect using white and black brush with 2% opacity, by the trees (to create more light through the leaves) and darken areas of the rocks in the foreground. As a final touch, I created a small vignette to give greater prominence to the central part of the frame.

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures ( -1; 0; +1)

ISO: 400 at f/4

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

Plugin: Color Efex Pro


Acropolis

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giuseppe-sapori-acropolis

During my days in Athens of course I visited the Acropolis and all its beauties. Historical place of immense artistic value, is a visit you can not miss in the Greek capital. Over the artistic values of the place, for me the best spot to photograph Acropolis is on the outward. So I did, after studying a bit ‘of places with views of the Acropolis in the end I opted for a large rock where you can safely go up with the stairs and offers a panoramic view of the Acropolis. This time I decide for a sunrise, so I arrived around them one hour before to avoid to find someone to occupy the best spots … you never know. 🙂 I made some shots in the various moments of the time I stay there until a full colofull light

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

The whole series of shots taken has allowed me to work on a series of exposures in the various moments of the time. In this way I was able to take the Acropolis lights in times of darkness to the most interesting sky light peeking from the Acropolis. Even if I took all my photos in bracketing mode, I selected only the best shots of the series that I take to put them as layers in Photoshop.  Having a quite balanced exposure between them have not done much use of luminance masks, I used them only in part of the area of the sky to control exposure. I opened Camera Raw to fix, highlight contrast, exposure, and shadows.

I had to erase between the trees 3 big silos that were seen at the base of the Acropolis, I deleted them using this technique…  They was very big and ugly to look.  I applied a slight blur on the street lamps light to avoid over-exposed effect and increased details to the entire photo using high frequency separation method.

 

TECHNICAL STUFF 

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 14mm)

Five Exposures (-2; -1; 0; +1; +2)

ISO: 100 at f/7,1

Software: Photoshop CC2015.5

 


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Hi, my name is Giuseppe Sapori, a professional photographer and author of this website, created by yours truly to show my work and share with you the techniques I use. My expertise is in the field of Landscape Photography... (Read More)

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