Author Archives: Giuseppe Sapori

Light Bleeding Tutorial

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In this tutorial we’ll see how to add a beaufitul warm light and enhance the lights in the sky in a few easy steps. This technique is called Light Bleeding and consists in painting this light inside the image

Simply adjusting the opacity in the various areas of the sky and in the points that light strikes, the light bleeding technique helps to greatly increase the visual impact of light and our images

Enjoy the video


The Secret Garden

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I finally go back to do some excursions in search of interesting points to photograph and I recently discovered this small waterfall that is located in a place not far from Rome

The small waterfall is located at the end of a stone building consisting of a series of ponds which in turn flow into other smaller waterfalls. The scenery surrounding this place is full of nature, a dense vegetation let a magnificent light filter over it

I take a bracketed shot series here, but I managed the shots without bringing too much hihger the exposure in oder to give to the viewer the sense of lights and shadows was here


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I take 5 bracketed shots here but I blended only few exposures using TTS Pro, in particular I mainly managed the image using the darker exposures

After this I increased the yellow light coming from the sky with a warm filter applied to luminosity masks, after this I increased details selectively excluding foliage and water

I launched a orton effect as I usually do in all my pictures and I increased the color vibrance to incrase the yellow light in the sky and the beautiful green of the leafs

As final step I darkened the image a little bit to give more the sense of darkness and leave some foreground part to the viewer’s imagination

I hope you will find this usefull! I’m happy to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

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

ISO: 100 at f/9

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


The Path of Angels

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It’s not the first time that I photograph Castel Sant’Angelo from his bridge. Over the years I have proposed this shot at least 3 times always with a different light and at different time of the day… today is a new version related to the other shots I took in Rome in this after quarantine days

This is the version where for the first time in all my attempts to photograph Castel Sant’Angelo I did not have to use lens-filters or other photoshop tools to cancel people and tourists on the bridge. This is in fact another spot in Rome that is really very crowded during all the year and only now that the city has not yet opened its doors to tourists is it possible to do, here also in the early morning here are always someone taking photos

Regarding the shot this time I positioned my tripod at eye level since I wanted to avoid the falling lines of the castle and the angels on the bridge, with all this leading lines is very easy to have wide angle lens distortions here… I made it all through a series of bracketing of 5 shots


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I made a digital blend using my panel TTS Pro, I removed some ghosts bird in the sky using clone stamp tool than I started editing lights and shadows using luminosity masks

After correcting color cast, I increased color vibrance and details. I create a small orton effect to give a more dreamy feel to the shot, with dodge and burn I lightened some darker parts of the castle and around the bridges

I increased contrast and highlights and I corrected shadows, after a soft decrease of general luminosity I pushed up some sunrise colours using a cold filter

As final step I added a very soft vignette to put the viewer’s eye on the leading lines

I hope you will find this usefull! I’m happy to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

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

ISO: 100 at f/22

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


Chasing Sunlight

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Hi guys, also this week here you are another sunrise shot from Rome for this photo I chose another spot where you can admire the roman sunrise in all its beauty

The view of the roman forum is truly spectacular, I went here just before the sun started to glimpse the horizon composing the shot in a way that so that I could have a general overview of the roman forum with the Coliseum on the right

I captured some series of bracketing shots, also including some shots holding my finger in front of the sunlight, in order to have some shots without the lens flare for the blend with other photos, in this way I removed all the lens flare from the final image


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I blended all the exposures using TTS Pro, I decreased the shadows and increased the highlights to push up the sunrise lights than, with the use of luminosity masks, I give more contast to the image.

After adding a warm filter to give a more yellow tone to the image, I added a orton effect to increase the dreamy look feel of the sunlight. With the use of dodge and burn I fixed some light and shadows spot around the picture and for the last I used a dark vignette around the picture

I hope you will find this usefull! I’m happy to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

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

ISO: 100 at f/22

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


The Last Afterglow

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Waiting for the possibility of being able to travel again through the Italian regions and I hope soon also in the rest of the world, I am dedicating myself to photographing my city in the early morning

The moment is certainly the right one because, as I wrote in previous posts, waking up early in the morning it is easy to find points of interest in the city that are usually very crowded and completely with no one

Here we are in the famous Piazza di Spagna, I wanted to give a perspective of the square starting from the famous “barcaccia” to portray the perspective of the Spanish steps with the church at the bottom, with a fantastic morning afterglow behind it


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I captured a bracketing series of 5 exposures to have all the dynamic range avaiable to blend the exposure with TTS Pro, after this I fixed the highlights using luminosity masks and contrast with midtones applied to curves adjustment layer

I increased the color vibrance and I added a warm filter to increase the yellow look of the sky, I corrected the perspective and I remove some spots of ghost birds flying into the sky

With dodge and burn tool I fixed all lights around the square, increasing the illumination over the light direction, I also increased the glow behind the church. I darkened the exposure just a bit and sharpened the details, as final steps I fixed contrast and lights with levels adjustment layer

I really hope you will find this usefull! Love to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

Single Shot

ISO: 100 at f/10

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


Trevi

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In these days I have had the lucky opportunity to photograph the Trevi’s Fountain without all those thousands of tourists who are perennially around the square

For those who have never been here, to give you an idea of the amount of people just think that as soon as you enter the fountain square you must start making your way through the crowd… here every semi-panoramic photo of the fountain is impossible throughout all the day. Only in the very early morning is there any chance of succeeding and it is not even so obvious

In these days without tourists in Rome everything is easier and in the early morning the square is completely deserted, only the wonderful sound of water is heard and the magical atmosphere of the fountain attracts to you

Nevertheless to give an image of the Trevi’s Fountain that enhances the light of the sky I chose a vertical shot also to give greater dynamism to the scene, I took many photos here also horizontally but in my opinion this view includes many essential elements of the fountain having something different from the classic postcards of Trevi


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I blended all the exposure using TTS Pro and with the use of luminosity masks I lightened the sky and shadows. I added details selectively excluding the water of the fountain and the sky clouds

I increased the color vibrance with the filter inside my free panel here and I give a warm look in the highlights and shadows using a warm filter. With the help of dodge and burn I pushed up the light in the main spots of the shot

I correct the perspective of the shot that had a strong wide angle perspective and as final touch, I added a small dark vignette around the photo to give more attention to the viewer to the fountain and the sky lights

I really hope you will find this usefull! I like to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

Single Shot

ISO: 100 at f/10

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


A New Day

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Finally I have again the opportunity to freely go out to photograph and on the first day I decided to go to the most famous spot of my city. It was great to take advantage of the total absence of tourists and people in the area but despite everything to avoid any possible presence of people, I went there for the sunrise

The splendid sunrays of sun that at this time of year are behind the Coliseum were unfortunately covered by clouds but anyway with all the sunrise colours on the sky

Talking about composition I preferred a vertical shot with composition, they are among my favorites, to emphasize the coliseum in the background and a leading compositional line towards the monument


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I made the image with the focus stacking technique by shooting the bracketed image for each series of captured images. If you want to know more about this technique that I always use when taking photos like this, I recommend reading this guide

With the resulting expoures I digital blended the images using TTS Pro. With the help of luminosity masks I fixed highlights, shadows and contrasts. After adding details selectively I increased the color vibrance exalting magentas and blue colours

I added orton effect and with the use of dodge and burn I lightened the blacks around the Coliseum. With the glow tool I lightened some highlights in the sky and created soft light bleeding near the sun position. As final step I added a vignette to darken the foreground and to give more prominence to the central scene

As always I hope you will find this usefull! I like to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Nikon 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 14mm)

Single Shot

ISO: 100 at f/9

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


5 Useful Tips to get Sharpen Landscapes

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Achieve sharpen images is one of the goals of every lanscape photographer. Creating razor sharps images can take photography to the next level and bring your landscape works looking better

To achieve sharpen images, just consider some passages when you’re shooting, there are few simple tricks. Some beginners photographers don’t always pay attention to this tips, same for me in the past but once I find out how to do it, I will they can no longer do without it. I am very careful to consider all these tips to get clear images now. Let’s see what they are

1) Clean your Lenses

Before go out for shooting take time to clean your lenses. Having clean lenses allows you to have sharpen images and free from spots and dust

To clean lenses the best solution is to use specific products for lens cleaning but if you don’t have something to clean it, cleenex are a good alternative

When you clean your lenses avoid to breathe on them before cleaning it, breathe is not suitable for cleaning and promotes the attachments

2) Use Tripod

Tripod is a fundamental tool for landscape photographers and one of the most powerfull tool for the sharpness of a shot

In almost all of my images I use the tripod, this mainly because I shoot during times where the sun is low, golden hour/blue hour situations and the tripod allows you to set camera values with low shutter speed that would otherwise be very difficult and cause blurry images without using it. You simply aren’t able to hold the camera perfectly still when using slow shutter speeds

Having a tripod available is still one of my best tips for capturing sharper images. However, any tripod is not enough to create sharper images, you need to have a sturdy tripod that is able to efficiently support the weight of our camera and lenses

3) Use a Remote Shutter

Relate to tripod for a landscape photographer a remote shutter is another very usefull equipment to use. Using a remote shutter can remove vibrations caused by pressing the shutter button on your camera and eliminate the shakes for sharpen images.

There’s many different models of remote shutters from the most affordables to the more advanced that allows many funtions for every needs related to long exposure photography. In any case every shutter release will help you to remove shakes for sharpen images

4) Use Manual Focus

Auto focus is a more pratical way to focus your images, but rather than auto focus the manual one is definitively the best to improve it and sharpen your images nothing is better than manually focusing your shots and to rely the focus to your eyes.

To focus manually without mistake I can suggest a little trick. Set the live view and enlarge the picture on the part you want to focus on, set the focus ring until the image is perfecty in focus and return back to classic vie, in this way it will be easy to focus manually

5) Use Sharpen Photoshop Filters

Sometimes it happens that despite all these previous steps the image is not as sharp as we expect, or that we simply want a greater sharpen effect on that picture. It depends on the type of shot and what are you expecting from that picture but a sharpen effect sometimes can give you something more to your image

To create a sharpen effect just follow this simple steps:

  • Duplicate layer
  • Navigate To Filters>Sharpen>Unsharp Mask
  • Set the radius between 50 or 100 it depends of how strong you want the effect. Set radious 1

The new layer now include sharpen and you can reduce the opacity for softner effect or create a layer mask to mask out the unwanted areas of sharpen

Another great way to apply sharpen is selectively throught the use of luminosity masks that only apply the sharpen effects on the selected areas of lights, darks or midtones.

If you want to go deepen this advanced method of selection you can read the article I wrote about a professional use of luminosity masks. If you want to create easily luminosity masks and many other professional photoshop filters for perfectly clean results, included sharpen, take a look on my professional editing panel TTS PRO the complete digital blending tool for Photoshop.

So those where the 5 tips to get sharpen images, have your tried some of above tips? let me know in comments!


Capri

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This is a picture from 2019, I take this shot in the beautiful island of Capri this is the view o classical Faraglioni from the stairs leading to the beach in front of them

During the walk through the beach the dense vegetation does not always make it possible to see the two Faraglioni rocks in the sea but I found this opening by chance which also created an interesting compositional framing

I post this photo after a year because even this like the previous post I initially discarted it, in fact in this photo the largest rock of the two Faraglioni is covered by vegetation but it is in any case a very interesting composition


WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I digital blended the shots using TTS Pro, I fixed highlights and shadow using luminosity masks. I added a warm filter to the sky using luminosity masks and color efex pro filter, than I added orton effect to create a soft dreamy effect

To lighten the dark of the foliage I used dodge and burn to lighten the shadows and light bleeding to increase the warm of the sky

After adding details on the whole image, I removed the effect on the sea and as final step, increased the contrast on the rocks

I really hope you will find this usefull! Love to ear this from you!


TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Sigma 14-24 f/2,8 (used at 21mm)

Single Shot

ISO: 100 at f/9

Software: Photoshop CC2020

Plugin: TTS Pro


How easily create Color Value Masks for precise selections

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Few weeks ago I published an article called how to use color range to select highlights, in this article we’ll talk about how the color range tool is very helpful for making a quick and precise selection of all highlights making easy digital blending between exposures

This type of adjustment can also be used to select a precise mask based on color value, this technique is very useful when you want to make an adjustment to a specific color range. I often use this technique to easily create color value masks for precise selections when working on an image’s color balance, particularly for sunrises or sunsets

Creating the Color Value Mask

For example I need to select only some colors in the sky without affecting any of the other colors in the image. To do this Navigate to Select>Color range and a new window will appear

Color Range Window

Compared to the color range tutorial this time I select sampled colors, with the eyedropper tool simply click on the color that you want to select.

After select the color we need to adjust the fuzziness, about this further right you pull it, the wider the selection becomes. If you want intead a more restricted selection, simply pull it back towards the left

By clicking ok, the Color Range window closes and the new selection with marching ants appear. With this selection active, it is possible to create the adjustment layer needed

Add More Colors to the selection

Right side to the eyedropper tool selection there are other two eyedroppers:

The First: with a + symbol next the first eyedropper tool to add a new color to the selection without losing the old area selected. If we need to add a sampled color to the selection just press the eyedropper tool. In my example image I can select other colors to make my selection more complete. You can repeat the process as many times you need to add more colors to the selection

Add to Sample Eyedropper

The Second: with a symbol, to subtract a color by using the third and last Eyedropper Tool

How to use selections

Although I usually use Luminosity Masks to select areas in my workflow, I prefer using this Color Range technique when make adjustments to the sky for making specific selections based on colors or working on color balance

Selected areas

Selections such as this can be used for a large variety of purposes, for example with Photo Filters, Adjustment Layers, Curves, Color Balance, Levels, Hue/Saturation or either to add a mask using digital blending

So this was how to easily create color value masks for precise selection, if you want to let me know what you think about it or if you have further questions please let me know, I’m always happy to answer to you!


Site Founder

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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