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Welcome to Michael's blog. Michael Andrew, (aka Michael The Maven) is a freelance producer, photography instructor, tech innovator, and when needed, disaster aid specialist. Disclaimer: Michael is a participant in Bhphoto & Amazon affiliate programs that provides an advertising commission if you purchase through links on this website.


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09.16.10         photography  

Sunset Shots- Blending 2 Exposures


I had mentioned this the other day, and being that I still don't have all my gear, it would be a good concept to cover if you aren't familiar with it. Let me emphasize: this is not the ideal way to do this, in fact there are several better ways to do it- I prefer using a graduated ND Filter on the sky, others like true HDR. That said, if you have only your camera and a tripod and don't feel like HDR processing it (through photoshop) it is a fairly easy to understand process and it can get great results. Just another tool in the toolbox.

Again, we are concerned about the brightness of the sun, in comparison with the dark shadows of the rocks. We want to see the details of both. All you do is take 2 exposures, one for the sun, one for the rocks. Make sure your camera doesn't move. (I like to use a timer and just change the shutter speed). Also I am previewing this in Live View so I can see what the exposure will be before hand and I am not taking a zillion pics.
Simply Stack the Images on top of each other in Photoshop, and use a layer mask to reveal the second image below it. I talk about all this on my Photoshop Crash Course DVD.
Export as a JPEG. I then spice it up with Michael Andrew Lollipops ® (which are simply fantastic for landscape type shots). Here is the Final Product:

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