Author Archives: Giuseppe Sapori

Tokyo Nights

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I take this from Tokyo Skytree,  from here you can admire (and photograph) the highest view of the city of Tokyo. The Skytree is a telecommunications and panoramic tower located in Sumida, Tokyo’s special district

With a height of 634 meters it is the tallest tower in the world and the second highest artificial structure in the world after the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai, the Tokyo Skytree is a strong tourist attraction and one of the main symbols of the city

The view from here is excessively high and everywhere you turn you can find some ideas to photograph from the top of the Japanese capital. Here I managed to make some shots including this where I preferred to emphasize a detail with one of Tokyo‘s main traffic arteries… everywhere I turned around it turned out to be all small 🙂

Also here as in Tokyo Tower to take shots through the windows of the tower I had to pay the maximum attention to the backlights that could reflect the lights on the window and definitively ruining the photo, at this regard also here I came to the rescue my sweatshirt with which I covered most of the reflections that entered the frame

I captured 3 exposures in bracketing mode for this frame, to have the ability to fix the lights and shadows with digital blending, the longer shot was of 25 seconds at ISO 100

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I started this picture with digital blending using  TTS PRO, I blended the images using fast blend lights funcion and auto blend darks funcion. With the resulting frame ready I worked on luminosity masks going to fix the darks and lights as I like, to lighten some shadows and decrease some lights too strongs

I added details and using dodge and burn I lighten some darks area of the city and I used some color lookup filters to add to this picture, in particular: crisp winter at 20% filmstock 10% and futuristick bleak 30%

The latest touch was to increase the shadows and adding some extra sharpen to the frame

I always hope you will find this usefull, I love to ear this from you!

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Sigma 24-70mm f/2,8 (Shot at 48mm)

Three Exposures

ISO: 100 at f/11

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 

 


Tokyo Nights

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This is one of the possible views that can be seen from Tokyo Tower, is a telecommunications and panoramic tower located in the Shiba-kōen district of Minato. 333 m high, it is the second highest artificial structure in Japan, after Tokyo Skytree. The Tokyo Tower is a tower inspired by the Eiffel Tower painted white and international orange in order to respect the rules of air safety

Among the various possible views I chose this because I liked the close-up view of the skyscrapers in front, moreover as in all the photos taken in the evening in front of the windows you have to pay the maximum attention to the reflections

At this regard it is very easy that in the frame can enter lights from the back usually lit to allow visibility into the Tokyo Tower, or the screen of someone’s cell phone that takes the picture behind you, for this reason it is really very important to have not only a tripod behind to shoot with long exposure times and low iso but also something to cover these reflections

For the occasion I use a sweatshirt with the zip that open becomes big enough to be able to almost completely close the field behind the camera and minimize the reflections on the glass, probably someone will take you for a crazy while you’re with a sweatshirt open behind the camera stopped for 30/40 seconds, but the result does not wait … this is achieved with shutter speeds of 30 seconds and ISO 100

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I take two shots of this view, a brighter and a darker exposure that i blended using auto blend darks function inside TTS PRO. Obtained a definite image I worked on luminosity masks going to fix the darks and lights as I like, to lighten some shadows and decrease some lights too strongs

I increased details and i used dodge and burn over the darks, as final touch i applied a small vignette to emphatyze the central part of the frame

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

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

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

Two Exposures

ISO: 100 at f/14

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 


The Golden Gai

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The Golden Gai is a truly magical place that is located in Kabuki-cho, the Shinjuku district a place that never sleeps in Tokyo

It is an area with many small bars that accommodate five to ten customers each and are really very small. The streets that surround the golden gai are all alleys and is famous for being the meeting place for artists, musician and actors

Although it has been a couple of nights at the Golden Gai in search of of a particular photographic point that struck my attention and I found this colorful and characteristic alley that contain the essence of Golden Gai

Despite is a place of small bars inside Golden Gai  the atmosphere was really calm in the streets, while if you enter one of these bars you find a completely different atmosphere of cheerful people

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

These are single shots images, I started working them opening the images in camera raw to get the major adjustments to white balance highlights and shadows

Once opened the images in Photoshop I used TTS PRO to launch dodge and burn with I decreased the lights of the lamps and increased the lights around the darker areas. Final steps was to increase a bit the details and fix contrasts.

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

Lens: Nikon 14-24mm f/2,8 (Shot at 15mm)

Single Exposures

ISO: 500 at f/2,8

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 

 


Highlights & Shadows Enhancements with TTS PRO

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In this tutorial is shown how to use the highlights and shadows enhancements using TTS PRO

The first group of highlights and shadows adjustments are in the field warm and cold filters – they are Warm Highlights – Cold Highlights – Warm Shadows – Cold Shadows

The main use of these buttons is to accentuate the effect of golden hour or blue hour in the images and to give more dynamism at dusk pictures

 

Warm highlights and warm shadows increase the levels of warm in the picture – they are very usefull for increasing golden hour effect or to give more energy into the sun direction

Cold highlights and cold shadows increase the levels of cold in the picture – they are very usefull to increase the blue hour effect or give a soft blue touch to milky way, night shot or to mix with blue the colors of sunset

 

The other interested buttons of highlights and shadows inside TTS PRO panel are More Highlights and Shadows Recovery. Both are filters that allow a quick click to lighten highlights and shadows.

More highlighs gives more energy to sunset and sunrises increasing the highlights in the landscape sky without burn it.

Shadows recovery increase the luminosity of shadows going to recover some parts of the peripheral image where we risk losing details

Enjoy the video

 

Download TTS PRO today!

 


Colours Enhancements using TTS PRO

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In this new video we will see how to use the colours adjustments buttons using TTS PRO panel

The colour correction is composed by Auto Correct – Colour Adjust – LAB Colour and Autumn Colour and in the finishing page we can find a Black and White conversion

Auto Correct will automatically correct your colour cast with one click, it usually make a good job but for every variations and how to use it without TTS PRO please read this article

Colour Adjust is a black and white based level to change the color cast of the picture moving the sliders of the colours, it’s an easy and great instrument to brighten and darken the image without affecting other colours.

LAB Colour is a great instrument to enhance all the colour of your picture, it gives a nice boost of vivid colours without overdo it. You can find my LAB Colour Tutorial here

Autumn Colour is the color effect that converts all the greens into red foliage autumn feel

Black and White creates a high contrasted black and white conversion of your image, it’s always possible to adjust it by clicking the window on the layer thumbnail and moving the slider to brighten od darken the picture

Enjoy the video


Stars Zoom

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Hello guys! Here I am again with a night picture from the beautiful Rocca Calascio. What you see is the castle, with the path that leads to the slopes of the fortress. The way was glimpsed in the darkness and the atmosphere created by this photo was something that catch me imediately I like very much that mood and I also like the light pollution behind the castle that seems a daylight lighting

Speaking of the sky and the stars this time I tried to do something different, I enjoyed playing with the zooming and  Photoshop levels to create something original and slightly different from the usual, one created is a startrail zoom made by copying the same level multiple times and changing the blending mode into lighten, the sky full of point-like stars seemed to me too reductive for this beautiful castle 🙂

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

After created the images stack I changed the blending mode into lighten to create a zooming effect, than i merged the result into a final frame. Using TTS PRO I launched luminosity masks with I increased the lights of the darks and decreased the highlights curves. I created contrast zones to fix the light and the contrast over the main part of the picture

The next step was to fix colors using auto correct, that give me a very good color tone, than I slighlty changed it by reducing blues and increasing yellow using a warming filter.

I used dodge and burn to lighten the path that lead to the castle, I also launched orton effect decreasing the opacity to 8% to create a soft and dark dreamy atmosphere in the image. The last step was to darken the image e and to launch a noise reduction with very low opacity just to give the last touch

All the effects I mentioned above are inside my brand new panel TTS PRO, that I recommend to download to  fasten your workflow and to have all the effect in one click application!

I  hope you will find this usefull. I love to hear that from you!

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

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

Single Exposure

ISO: 3200 at f/2,8

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 


Milky Way Door

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To make this picture I moved to the central area to have a frontal view of the “door” this time in front of me, the moment of shooting the picture is logically different than my previous post, the milky way was much more displaced and higher. This was not one of my favorites spots that night because the light pollution of the nearby cities that are located a few kilometers away from the location selected for this photo definitely comes on stage

I selected two shots for this image, the first with a darken and the second with brighter foreground, in this way i was able to use the brighter shot to bring up the lights on the ruins and the foreground, I don’t use any blending functions but only luminosity masks to bring up exposures and layer masks to paint the areas in.

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I started in Camera Raw setting the exposure, shadows, whites to push up initially the milky way withouting destroy the other part of the picture. I’t really important that in this first phase to not add contrast because it will affect all the following work.

Opened the image in photoshop  I started to  to raise up the milky way using  TTS PRO  I made the main adjustments regarding, color, lights and contrast masking the work done only on the milky way, for this I simply used a layer mask and a brush. With dodge and burn I increased the lights around the rocks on the foreground and I darkend the light pollution coming from the city. Using hue/saturations and the color adjust funcions of  TTS PRO i fixed the colors around the milky way, this time turning it slightly more on blue

Always using my panel this time I applied the noise reduction to the image, reducing the opacity a little bit more, the latest touch whas to add a very soft focus around the milky way using glow funcion, you can find the tutorial here

I really hope you will find this usefull. I love to hear that from you!

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

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

Two Exposures

ISO: 3200 at f/2,8

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 


Light Bleeding and Glow Applications using TTS PRO

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In this new video tutorial we will see how to use the glow buttons using TTS PRO panel
We can take advantage of the two effects in various ways including that to lighten and give a touch of brightness, give more strength and a magical look to the lights, add vignettes, or add more heat to your photos using light bleeding technique. With the TTS PRO panel you can launch all this very quickly and speed up your workflow as well as having many other effects and very useful applications for image blending

If you are not yet a TTS PRO user you can create a new layer change the blending mode to soft light and you’re done, you can adjust the opacity later and follow the video with some of the applications you can do with this combination

Enjoy the video


Milky Way Door

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I took this photo at the dawn of the moon, the light source that starts from the left is just the light of the moon that began to peek out of the mountains. I made this frame by two shots, I moved to photograph the rock first at the top to take all the milky way and then gradually down to include more foreground

Initially I did some tests shooting here with a subject in the picture and then other tests with a light source inside that little door that is in the ruins, I discarded all these shots because the image as a whole with all these elements was not look good, especially even if the light coming from the door would have made the most striking photo at the same time made it so much artifacts, so I avoided

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

I followed the same editing line of the previous picture, I started opening the images on camera raw to make the first edits and save the images before apply the Photoshop photomerge in one, once obtained one single frame by this two exposures I applied the free trasform tool to adjust the empty areas and adapt to the frame

So I started edit the image by using camera raw to raise up the milky way than back in photoshop I applied the result only to the sky. Using TTS PRO  I made the main adjustments regarding, color, lights and contrast. I applied the luminosity mask contrast to better control the contrast over the point of lights darks and midtones of the picture

I increased the lights of the foreground applying a curves tool to the darks luminosity masks and I launched dodge and burn with I adjusted with a brush the colors over the milky way and the lights over the darkest areas of the foreground

I also made some adjustment to the colors, I don’t like so much the coolest tone of the night sky coming from this picture, in particular the sky was too much blue saturated, so in this case I stepped up the yellow tones of the light pollution and I decreased the saturation of the blue colors

In TTS PRO in the third page of finishing there are many functions to save and finishing your work, here I applied a small vignette reducing the opacity to 30% and I saved the images by height to simply create a web format image without loosing quality

I hope you will find this usefull. I’m happy to hear that from you!

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

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

Two Exposures

ISO: 3200 at f/2,8

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 


The Wanderluster

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I absolutely love to photograph the night sky and every summer I try to find the right time to dedicate to the milky way and night shots. What you see is a shot taken in Abruzzo, an Italian region where nature is the main element and for me it is one of the main spots for landscapes and the night shots

This area is located in an ancient, uninhabited medieval village, very suggestive but above all ideal for taking shots and the milky way. At regard if you have not yet read it I recommend this article where I wrote how to plan and shot the milky way where you can find usefull information about the dark skies and how to take this kind of shots

This image is the result of a photomerge. I took a series of shots where I went to compose the frame by taking the whole milky way moving to the shots gradually down to including more foreground, I inserted the subject later with a mask from one shot taken separately to avoid the light disturb the visibility of the milky way

 

WORKFLOW EXPLANATION

Before open the images in Photoshop I make some edits on camera raw, especially for the colors and the lights, I saved the results and I opened the images as photomerge that composed my based frame, I adjusted the frame using the free transform tool, than I started using camera raw again with TTS PRO where I made the major adjustments for the contrast, highlighs, white and black points for the milky way

Using curves I increased the lights on the foreground helping myself with a brush. With dodge and burn I fixed the lights over the underexposed areas and I added more colors in the sky and on the ruins. Always using my panel I applied the warm highlights fiter that increased the yellow part of the highlights, than I decreased the opacity to 10% to softener the effect

Also made some adjustments at the colors where I fixed the main chromatic tone of the sky. With the clone stamp tool I removed some unwanted spots and some light pollution coming from the nearest city. As last touch I added a soft orton effect to make all more dreamy

You can find all the effects mentioned above in my custom panel TTS PRO, a very useful tool for any type of editing that I recommend to download to speed up and improve your workflow. I also want to recommend to subscribe to my newsletter to have news and updates from me and to receive a welcome gift as well as monthly tutorials about travel and landscape photography

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

 

TECNHNICAL STUFF

Camera: Nikon D-800

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

Three Exposures

ISO: 3200 at f/2,8

Software: Photoshop CC2018

Plugin: TTS Pro

 


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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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