Laura Macky Photography

Journey of a body on this earth

One Photo Focus – May


It’s One Photo Focus time!  I rather enjoy this challenge of taking someone’s photo and editing it into our own creation.  This week the original photo was provided by Shane Francescut, so thank you Shane!  Please check out Shane’s blog when you have time.

The Process:

The first thing I always do is adjust the shadows, clarity and other basics one finds in Lightroom or Adobe Camera Raw because I know I’m going to process the heck out of it lol.  Once I have that done I try to come up with a vision for the image, and in this case I had a burning desire to make it a nighttime image (with my own twist of course).  πŸ™‚

1.  After the basic adjustments mentioned above, I tone-mapped it in Nik HDR to give it a “pop”.  (I think I’m addicted to tone-mapping in Nik HDR.)

2.  Next, I replaced the sky with the stars using my favorite “blend if” feature in the layer styles.  I cropped the photo to cut off the right hand part of the photo to eliminate the issue I was having masking in the sky in between all the branches.  It was just too much to deal with trying to blend in the sky.

3.  After that I applied the Nik Color Efex Sunlight filter to the image to simulate the moon’s glow.

4.  Now I needed that nighttime look, so I applied one of the Nik Analog Efex filters to parts of the image by using the Brush feature in the filter.  I really love the brush feature in Nik because it allows me to control where I want the filter applied and at what opacity.

5.  Lastly, I added a vignette by applying neutral density gradients along the edges of the photo on a blank layer so I could control the darkened areas rather than just using one of the filter vignettes.

I will throw in a caveat here in that there were some steps along the way that are kind of boring so I won’t list all those but basically they include burning here and there, and isolating parts of the image to control hue and saturation and contrast.

Thank you Stacy for coordinating this challenge!  Please check out the entire ABFriday Challenge and also Stacy’s Post too!

May One Photo Focus

May One Photo Focus

May One Photo Focus - Original

May One Photo Focus – Original



Author: lauramacky

Journey of a Body on this Earth

41 thoughts on “One Photo Focus – May

  1. Beautiful work Laura!

  2. Oh Laura … too clever! Love the crop, stars, colours and mood. It rocks! πŸ˜€

  3. PS loving your 2 posts in one day! I’m struggling to do 1 a fortnight .. LOL

  4. Wow, what an incredible transformation, Laura! πŸ™‚

  5. Interesting process. Like the stars

  6. Love what you did to the shot! One Photo Focus is always so fun.

  7. I love your night vision!!!

  8. thanks for the lesson.

  9. What a super cool initiative Laura! And very nicely edited, excellent work!

    Hope you have a great weekend ahead!


  10. That is quite a nice edit, the day to night transformation isnt bad. I have never used blend if to add a nights sky, that is something I will have to remember.

  11. Beautiful conversion. The image now tells a story – really nice edit.

  12. Laura – your end result is incredible. I don’t use Nik, so I’m not quite sure what all these steps mean. But it turned out great – very creative!


  13. There’s not much more for me to add here after replying to your comment on my site. Except that you’ve sent me off to stock photo sites to find night skies that I can play with and add to some of my shots. This is really incredible work and I just don’t know where to start. Just having the vision and then the ability to create it. Amazing!

  14. Wonderful “night vision” beautifully executed.

  15. very cool sky! The photo really does look like a night shot now.

  16. Okay, once again, you’ve blown me away with your vision! And I realize I really need to delve into the Nik programs more deeply! I have Nik HDR, but have never used it, AND I didn’t know about the brush feature. Does that exist across all the programs??

    Such an awesome new image, Laura. Thanks for participating. I love it when you do as it’s always a wild ride to see what you come up with! (And apologies for my late reply – a few very hectic days have thrown me off schedule.)

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