Darktable edit #4 – Windward Sunset

Hi everybody It's Harry with another Darktable edit

This is a picture I took last night around sunset You can see we've got pastel-ish colors because the sun is behind us I took this picture hand-held, so it's a little off We've got a few things to do with this picture, and I'm going to try and keep it interesting and use some techniques that I haven't used in previous videos Having Aspect on Freehand allows you to move these lines up and down, which really helps determining when you're straight or not

I see that there's a little bit of a camber to the horizon I kindof like that, so I'm not going to apply Lens Correction to this because it makes it look like the middle of the picture's further away, and I like that effect I'm just going to leave it I always remove Chromatic Aberrations from my RAW images,and so I'm going to go ahead do that We have this on Freehand

I don't see how this dark part beneath this naupaka bush really helps the picture, so I'm going to bring that up just a little bit That puts us closer to this 2/3:1/3 rule Maybe bring that down just a little bit I'm going to work on large-scale lightness issues, and then we'll work on the photo The bottom part's dark; there's not much detail in the foam; this left side's a little bit darker

I want to get more contrast between the clouds and the sky I'm going to use an interesting technique on the sky We'll work on that later First, let's deal with this darker part and this darker part, and in here I'm using the mouse wheel to enlarge the size of this Gradient Fill

See what it looks like? Oh, I've got it facing the wrong way There we go; that looks better Bring down our White Point a little bit, quite a bit, actually I don't want to bring it all the way to where I want it I just want to match the rest of the image

Now this side Wrong side again There we go Bring down our White Point a little bit Let's see what the difference is there

This is what we started with; that's where we are now That looks better to me Now, something a little tricky: we're going to use two Gradient Masks to isolate this area right here, and enhance the contrast in the foam First Gradient Mask Second Gradient Mask

Now, they need to be facing opposite directions If I go like this, they're both facing the same way, so I'm going to turn this one around, reverse them, see? Nice, eh? Bring that down, make it a little smaller, bring this up, make it a little smaller Now we're going to use the Eyedropper Tool Click Area, select this area in here This is where we are on our L channel

Bring this up just a little bit, not much Bring this side down This will give us more contrast Without, and with That's just what I'm looking for

Now, let's look at our color This beach naupaka here should be somewhere around a little bit more yellow than regular foliage Normal foliage would be 1:2 green to yellow And this is a little more yellow than I would expect So I'm going to expect this to be more yellow than 2:1 Let's take a sample and see what it looks like

And we'll save that And we'll take another sample and see what that looks like too I'll take a few samples here so we get a good indication What do we have? 11 and 16; 10 and 14; 12 and 17 That's not even close to 2:1 We want, actually, more yellow and less green This side here is Green vs

Magenta Cooler colors are negative Green is cooler than Magenta This side here is the B Channel, and that's Blue vs Yellow

Cooler colors are negative Yellow is warmer than Blue, so we've got Yellow on this side, Green on this side Color Balance We have enough Green; I'm not going to worry about that I'm going to bring up my Yellow

Now we're just a little more than 2:1 on each of these Hey, that was easy Let's see what that looks like Perfect Up here I'm going to use a technique involving constructing an L Channel and applying it to the image with a Soft Light Blend Mode

Let's get started Under Channel Mixer, there are various options I'm going to use the Lightness option in this case This Lightness option lets me reconstruct the L Channel out of a combination of Red, Green, and Blue What I'm going to do is I'm going to look at each of those channels and see which ones give me the most separation between the cloud and the sky

Taking a snapshot of where things are now, so I have a reference point This enables me to look at my changes Now I'm going to take my Red Channel only and bring it up so it's about the same lightness as my original Maybe a little more Well, that certainly helps things, doesn't it? It makes the clouds pop a little more, gives them a little more definition

It looks like we lose some color in the sky, but not too much Let's try the Green Channel That gives us more color in that red It doesn't really help us out on the clouds too much Let's try the Blue Channel

Oh, my, that's terrible Our contrast is all gone Whatever we do, we do not want that Blue Channel As a matter of fact, I am going to give us a negative value for the Blue Channel I'm going to bring up my Green a little bit, but mostly, I'm going to use that Red

A little Green, mostly the Red, bring the Blue down a little bit, and I'm going to apply this with the Soft Light Blend Mode Before, and after Oh, that brings out the clouds: nice It gives us a little more saturation, too, especially down here Let's look at that again

Before, and after I have no interest in using this effect in the lower part of the image at all Drawn Mask, Gradient Filter We love our Gradient Filters Here's where we started; here's where we're at right now

I would like to equalize the brightness of the foam and the brightness of the rocks a little bit more Also, up here, this is still a little bright, and so is this I don't want to get halos, and when I bring up shadows or bring up highlights, and then make modifications to the image in the future, it's really tough to not get halos I like to get nice, smooth gradients A Low-Pass Filter is excellent for that

Under Saturation, turn that off so I'm just working with the L Channel Bring my Radius way up, way, way, way up, like that So now the light parts are very light and the dark parts are dark We're going to reverse our Contrast so we have exactly the opposite We're going to apply this with Blend Mode, (sorry audible mistake) and then we're going to Attenuate it by adjusting the Contrast

If I bring this down to zero, it should be pretty much what we started with Yes, there's no difference between what we started with and that As I bring my Contrast down, we're going to see some equalizing effect there When I get to where I want, I can stop I'm bringing it back up a little bit

I want it right about there Before, and after Darkened up here, here; lightened up here Before, and after I'm trying to bring my information into the middle of my Histogram

I don't want to blow out my Highlights, so I'm not going to worry about my White Point yet RAW Denoise, an excellent option Let's come in and see where we're at with our noise There's quite a bit of noise in this image, isn't there? I shot this with a Dual ISO option, which makes it pretty much like an HDR image The lower ISO was 50 and the higher ISO was 800, so we've got the noise of an 800 ISO image but the parts of the image that were bright would have been calculated with the 50 ISO amount, and so they shouldn't see very much noise at all

We don't see much noise at all So, I'm going to differentially apply the Noise Reduction to the darker parts of the image With the RAW Denoise, I'm going to bring it down all the way, and then slowly bring it up until the noise goes away I don't want to trade off visual acuity – sharpness – for noise reduction Oh, with the RAW Denoise, I cannot use a Parametric Mask

That's fine; this will be fine If I wanted to use a Parametric Mask, I could use this Denoising option But I don't think we're really hurting anything by not If I had to bring my RAW Denoise threshold way up here in order to get the effect I want, I would probably switch over to the Denoise Profile so that I could apply it with a Parametric Mask Anything else we want to do before we save this and move on to our next stage? We've got our colors right; everything's straight; we've got our major tonal issues worked out

Here we go We'll save it as a TIF, 16-bit Adobe RGB Here we go Okay, so now we're starting over again We've collapsed the image

I'd like to bring out the structure of the clouds a little more I'd like to have them pop off the background a little moreI'm going to use two different tools for that Let's just worry about that part of the image first In order to isolate that part of the image, I will use, once again, a Gradient Fill

That looks like a good one Get rid of my Color Channel Just working in my L Channel Let's bring our Radius up We'll get nice large tonal variations so we don't get lost in the details

That looks good I'm going to apply this with a Soft Light Blend Mode, and then attenuate it with the Opacity There's none of the effect; there's all of the effect, maybe like that I'm going to do that again This time the contrast is a little lower

I'm going to bring my Brightness down to zero so I don't add any brightness, because I'm concerned about losing some of these highlights Soft Light Here's what we started with, and here's where I'm at now That's just where I want it to be I'd like for the clouds to pop from the background a little bit, especially down here

I''m going to use the two Gradient Fill method, one coming from up above and one coming from down below, to give me more of the effect at this edge but not have it extend down here Let's do that One, and another This one I'm going to make larger, and I'm going to spin it around so they're facing opposite directions Turn on my Mask Indicator

Reverse them Oh, it looks like I need to spin them both around So, this one's a nice, even Gradient Fill from here to here, and this one starts rather abruptly because it's got a shorter transition distance I'm going to make it even shorter still and bring it up here That's what I was hoping for

Get rid of my Color Channel I'm going to bring my Contrast Channel down some because 1 is just too high 07 is good for this effect Bring my Radius to the point where I can see these clouds separating from the background

That was pretty far Maybe 3 pixels I'm going to apply this with the Overlay Option and then attenuate the effect with the Opacity Before, and after it still looks a little dark in here, doesn't it? Let's bring up our Brightness just a little bit

Before, and after I still don't want it to get into these really dark areas, so I'm going to combine the Drawn Mask with a Parametric Mask, use the Eyedropper Tool to determine the value of this darker area, and use my L Channel here and these sliders to reduce the effect in the darker part We'll turn on our Mask Indicator so we can see what we're doing Bring my sliders up There, now there's very little effect in the darker part I'd like nice smooth transitions, so I'm going to use a Mask Blur here

Turn that off, get rid of that Eyedropper Ah, yes; now it's not so dark in here But I still have these parts popping off the background Without it, and with it Now let's work on the bottom part here

I'd like for these rocks to look all nice, big, and rounded too I need more mid-tone in order to work with this image I'm dealing with the top and the bottom part of this image separately There, that will give me more mid-tones to work with down here Knock down some of these highlights, kindof flatten the tone

I can use this mid-tone information and push it toward the edges in a selective manner to emphasize this shading Using Low-Pass Filters and Soft Light Blending Mode Bring my Contrast down and my Lightness up a little bit Oh, let's just leave it like that for starting, and get rid of our Saturation so we can see what we're doing Then increase my Radius and bring it down to the point where I'm getting the shading I want

We're starting to see some nice shading on these rocks without getting lost in the details like the individual cracks and pukas (Hawai'ian for hole) in the rocks It's up around 30 pixels for a Radius, applying it with Soft Light Opacity to attenuate the effect This is no effect: it looks a little flat As I increase the effect, these start to look more 3-dimensional

Without it, and with it I'm not interested in having the effect up here We're working on the bottom part of the image, so once again I'm going to use the Drawn Mask When you use Drawn Mask, you can go into the memory of Masks here, and pull out one that you used recently, so you don't have to re-draw them each time I had that Tone Curve

I will have to reverse it, though There we are Well, I want to do that same thing again I'm just going to duplicate this instance In order to see what I'm doing, I'm turning the Opacity all the way up, changing my Blend Mode to Normal, and then reducing the Radius

There, that's the shading I want I'm not getting individual leaves yet, but I'm starting to get some of these smaller rocks If I go just a little bit smaller, I think I can pick up the variation between the different leaves There we go I like that

Back to Soft Light Use the Opacity to attenuate the effect Oh, I like that I'm going to work on edges now High-Pass Filter

Bring it down until I just get my edges Mostly I'm interested in making sure I maintain the detail in here This is a little bit, ah, this is a long exposure, so the waves are a little smeared out I want to make sure that when I apply edging, I don't end up with some unusual effect because of this smearing, so I'm not going to apply much contrast to the edges I'm adjusting my Contrast and my Sharpness to just get the parts I want, and I'm going to apply this with Overlay and bring it up just a little bit

I think that works well It works on the rocks, it works here, and it works up here in the clouds too I'll just apply that to the entire image — except, I'm not happy with what it does to the waves here They look a little contrasty to me If I use a Drawn Mask, and use a nice large tool, I can paint this If I give it enough Mask Blur and reverse it, it will give me a nice smooth lack of effect in this area

We'll turn on our Mask Indicator and see what's going on This is the area I painted I'm going to reverse it Now it doesn't have an effect Now take our Mask Blur and turn it up pretty good

There we go, like that There, now we don't end up with this chunky look up here Well, that's mostly what I wanted to do to this Time to work on the color Bring up that just a little bit

This is only applying to the bottom part, see? Colors are going to be a little tricky on this I don't want the ocean to become too Cyan, and it can get out of Cyan really quickly, so I'm going to watch that as I work I'm applying a Parametric Mask, and the first thing I'm going to do is try and equalize my colors a little bit, and then I'll increase them I want to increase it so that the parts of the image that don't have much color get a little more, and the parts of the image that have more color don't get as much to start, just to give me a little equalization Here I am on the Chromacity Channel

I'll turn on my Mask Indicator so I can see what I'm doing, bring down my sliders so I can see where the color starts About there So the beach naupaka's not going to get much, these areas here will get more effect The more yellow, the more effect We're going to separate our colors

That's going to increase visual isolation of individual components and increase the saturation a little bit too Bring those up Let's see what that looks like Nothing, and with it Perfect

Look what it does to the sky; it brings out some nice colors in here The ocean's fine The beach naupaka doesn't get out of hand, and the rocks get a little more colorful Without it, and with it We've got a lot of color noise in here

See that? I'm going to apply a Gaussian Blur to just the Color Channel to merge my colors that are adjacent cells, and that will get rid of this red-green noise Since most of the detail is in the L Channel, the Luminosity Channel, it really shouldn't degrade the image much by doing that So, first thing, we'll get rid of the Contrast Bring that down to zero Now we only have the Color Channel

Bring our Radius down Maybe 3 or 4 pixels We'll start at 3 and bring it up if we need to Apply this to just the Color Channel Well, we still have little bits of green and red here

Before, and after We got rid of a lot of it We'll bring it up to 4 pixels Before, and after Oh, I think that got rid of all of it

Nice Did we lose much detail? Before, and after A little bit, but it looks fine to me, especially from out here When we Sharpen in our final pass, I think we'll pick all that up again, so I'm not worried about it This looks good to me

Let's collapse this and do final changes Getting close Here we are Starting anew Everything's been collapsed, all our changes have been applied, we're working with a 16-bit TIF again, we're still in RGB color space

Let's make our final adjustments First thing I want to do is add some color to this I don't want this beach naupaka to get fluorescent on me, so I'll probably be applying the color in a Gradient Fill from the bottom, with more color on top, because, heck, everyone loves a sunset I'm going to apply the color, increase the Saturation, using a Low-Pass Filter so that I don't increase noise I'll bring this down to maybe 3 pixels, apply it only to the Color Channel

I don't need to turn off Contrast if I tell this to only apply to the Color Channel It automatically excludes Luminosity Gap Then I bring up my Saturation I'm making the Blend larger than the image so that even at the bottom here, there's some effect Here, I'll turn on the Mask Indicator

We get a lot of effect up here, and I still want to get some effect on the bottom I want to make it a little bit smaller so that I get my maximum effect that starts at the horizon Now, make my Saturation the way I want Oh, that looks like fun, doesn't it? It looks like a little bit of Gamma, because it's a little dark still The whole image is just a little bit dark

I don't want to make this area get any brighter I'm going to lock that right here We'll put a point right here That will hold that And then, what areas do I want to be brighter? Well, like right here

That's a good start Let's bring that up just a little bit I feel like my Black Point has some issues Yeah; look at this gap Bring this down a little bit

I don't like what it's doing here, so once again, I'm going to use a Drawn Mask Swing it all the way around, make it smaller, there we go I still feel like the whole image could use a little more lightening I don't want to lose my detail in the foam I already did that

I'm going to grab a point in the foam and hold it and then lighten the rest of the image Well, I'm not feeling good about that at all Let's try a different technique Unlike last time, I'm going to apply this with the Soft Light Filter, because I'm interested in tones, not edges Bring this down because it's too strong

Here's no effect, bring it up a little bit Well, that's a little better Final Sharpening This part of the image here just looks a little blue to me, and it's sunset, so I feel like this color here should be reflecting this way I can see a little bit of highlights here and here, but then it gets lost

Maybe it's the cloud shading on it, I don't know, but I don't get the impression that they're in the same scene So, I'm going to figure out what color this is, and then I'm going to apply a little bit of that color to the highlights on this side Use our Eyedropper tool to figure out what color this is So, it's right here on our B Channel, and right here on our A Channel It's this bottom part I want to apply it to

Oh, good; I got it facing the right way A little bit more Red A little bit more Yellow A little more pop Before, and after

Ah, yes, that's just what I'm looking for This wave here looks like it could be a little more identifiable I'm going to use a Low-Pass Filter with a really wide setting to try and give me some more macroscopic tone here, so I've got some structure I'm going to paint that on, because I only want it in a certain area So, we have Low-Pass Filter, Drawn Mask

I'm going to paint this on Use our Mask Blur Yeah; that looks good We don't need any Saturation Let's bring our Radius up so we start getting the macroscopic feel

There we go Oh, I'd like it to go up a little bit higher here, maybe over to the right a little bit Let's add a little bit Now, I'm going to apply this with Soft Light Before, and after

It looks like it's a little strong Bring it down just a little bit, and it looks like it's a little dark Bring the Brightness up just a little bit Before, and after Now I can see that feature better

Last but not least, I'd like for these rocks here that are sticking out of the water to kind of separate from the water I did that with the clouds with the Overlay Blend mode with a Low-Pass Filter, so I'm going to use the same thing here New Instance Drawn Mask Nice and big

Give me some separation here Mask Blur See if that's too large or not No, that looks good We don't need the Color Layer at all

Get rid of that Let's adjust our Radius up so that we can get it to the point where these rocks kind of pop away a little bit There we go We've got our edge, but we're not getting lost in the detail Apply this with the Overlay

Blend Mode Oh, look; they just pop off the back Bring down our Opacity quite a bit because it's too strong Bring it up slowly Better be careful with that

It's a strong effect Before, and after That's it It looks good to me Nice to see you all again

Have a wonderful day Thank you