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Photoshop and Lightroom for Landscape Photographers

Lesson 16 of 19

Editing the "Hero" Landscape Shots

Matt Kloskowski

Photoshop and Lightroom for Landscape Photographers

Matt Kloskowski

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Lesson Info

16. Editing the "Hero" Landscape Shots

Lesson Info

Editing the "Hero" Landscape Shots

So that was our valley view. The other thing that I do, and here's another version too. The other thing that I do is when you're out on a shoot, there's gonna be the hero shots that you shoot, but I'm always trying to look for, I'm always trying to look for something that kind of, I think about if I made a photo book, if I made a photo book from Yosemite, how many hero shots can I have, right? There's gonna be the reflection, and the mountain. There's gonna be another reflection and another mountain. But you've got all these hero shots. But if I want a photo book, I want 30 to 40 photos in there. So what I find myself doing a lot is shots like this where you're walking through the trees and look up. I'm always looking at, it sounds silly, but look at the light, what is the light hitting? That's the first thing that I go to, whenever I see the cool light hitting something. So, when you take shots like this, it doesn't mean that we have to go through the same level of editing that we did...

on the hero shots. A lot of times, it can be a preset, I'd normally just kind of open up the shadows, but you could run through. These are the ones that you get with the class today, the one-click ones, the basics. faded look, bold colors, let's try bold colors. Alright, 'cause nothing that says you can't tweak them. Pull back the highlights a little bit. And then bring out the warmth, that's really what I want to draw attention to there. But that's it, I'm done. I'm not gonna spend a lot of time. The reason why I wanted to cover this in the workflow classes, I think it's important to understand the shots you're gonna spend time on, and the shots you're not. That's what I hope to get across here. You're gonna go out in your industry and you're gonna take a whole bunch of photos. Understand which photos you took to just kind of document that you were there, maybe help build the photo book, and then understand the hero photos that deserve the time, that deserve a little bit of extra time and energy. But to me, this shot's kind of funny, it ended up being one of my favorite photos from the trip. Go figure, I'll post my stuff to Facebook. Go figure that I go to Yosemite, and I post all these photos to Facebook and go figure that this is the one that got by far and above the most love of any photo that I've posted from Yosemite. And we're sitting there, we went to Lower Yosemite Falls, and I don't know if you're familiar with it, if you've never been there. There is a certain time in the morning at a certain time in the year, if the falls are flowing, they kick up a lot of mist, and the way the sun comes around and hits it about 8:30 in the morning, it gets this rainbow. So we went there to try to shoot it and get the rainbow and we didn't get the rainbow. So I'm standing there and I'm looking around, and I'm looking there and I'm like, what's the light hitting? And the light's hitting this tree that's right next to the falls. So rather than shoot wide, I put my zoom lens on, I zoomed in on it and got that. And in the meantime by the way, I'm co-teaching a workshop, I go back and everybody's like, "How come you didn't tell "us about that job?" I'm like, I don't know, I really didn't think anything of it. I was just standing there and I'm like okay, click. But here, let's reset it. So that's the original. What do I do, pull back on the highlights a little bit, open up the shadows. This one will probably lend itself really good. Just jump through. Ah, there we, I mean that's almost right there. HDR, building in some warmth. So again, these are the presets that you get with the class. The Golden Hour, ah, we're gonna go back to HDR, I like that one. Oh forest, you gotta, if it's Forest and Trees, you gotta click on it. That's even better. Alright, so that gets me most of the way there. I might experiment with a little bit of the shadows here and there. I'll probably take the brush. Let's go with Sunshine. So my Sunshine brush just mimics a little bit of sunshine. And then throw a vignette on top of it. So, before, after. Again, not going crazy on it, not spending 10, 15 minutes on every photo, just trying to crank through them. Here's another one, exactly where I was looking, I turned around, and this is what I saw. So, that's the original shot, reset. Went to the Crop Tool, kind of cropped in a little bit on it. And I've rotated it around, I don't think I was crooked, but it still kind of looked funky. And this is one where I pry would take my brushes and let's go Darker Foreground. Darken that up a little bit, just so you can see what's behind the brush, negative exposure, positive clarity, that's it. Click New, and I'll do Brighter Foreground. And just paint that, if it's too much, pull back on the exposure. So, that's before, after. So, nothing crazy. I'll show you one last one here, just the miscellaneous shots. So this was literally, this is right out of the camera, I'm at this other location. I think it was one of the first view that we were at. And just looking across and I just saw some kind of cool light on the trees here, that grabbed me. So go through, when you think about it, as you look at photos, what do you want people to look at, right? I don't want them looking at the rock back here, so I'm gonna darken it. I don't want them looking up here. So I'm gonna darken all of that. Alright, what else? The warmth got me, I like the warmth. So I'll go with a little sun glow. Pull it back, what else? Finally, a little bit of texture. So we'll go maybe some grit. Oh, told me I gotta click New. Let's just go add a little bit of grit. All the grit was is clarity. Nothing else to it, and I'll maybe even add some warmth to it, okay? And then throw a vignette, and you're done. Not too much more to it, again, that's before, that's after. I also cropped in on it. It kind of looked like a good crop photo. Where I just did that, and so that kind of looked cool too, so I actually saved two different versions of it, and I just put them in different places in the photo book, and nobody knows that it's the same photo, they're two different orientations. Alright, so that takes of that one, you could see, I mean there's just a couple of other shots where I did the same thing with.

Class Description

Outdoor photography is about capturing the feeling you have when you are actually out in nature. Learn how to make photos that reflect the beauty and mood of the landscape you see with your naked eye in Photoshop and Lightroom for Landscape Photographers with Matt Kloskowski.

In this class, Matt will show you his personal workflow for enhancing outdoor images, so they reflect the world as it truly looks and feels. 

You'll learn how to: 

  • Create the best looking skies you've ever seen
  • Manage the entire landscape workflow – from start to finish
  • Implement the "go-to" adjustments Matt uses on every photo

Matt will even offer insights on preparing and printing the final image. You’ll learn the latest techniques for giving photographs of beautiful places the same color, atmosphere, detail, and feeling they had when you took the photo.

Whether it's images of the sun, water, snow, trees, or that magical light that you are always looking for, Photoshop and Lightroom for Landscape Photographers with Matt Kloskowski will help you bring your landscape photographs to life. 

This course is part of the Lightroom tutorials series

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 2015, Adobe Lightroom CC 2015


Barry Walsh

Great class Matt! I am about two-thirds the way through the class and have learned a lot about Lightroom and the objective of this course. I must admit I was over-whelmed by the amount of material covered and that was probably due to not having prior knowledge about Lightroom. I have since signed up for the 7 day trial of Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan and then went through their "beginner's" tutorial. If you are contemplating taking this course, I would highly recommend taking the Adobe Lightroom tutorials first. They cleared up a lot of confusion on my part and I now have a better understanding of the concepts Matt covered. I'm actually going to go back and retake what I viewed to help reinforce both what Matt initially covered and the basic concepts tutorials offered by Adobe. Again, great job Matt and thanks for all the useful information!

a Creativelive Student

Matt is the best and he his the same in person. I had the fortunate opportunity to run into Matt on the side of the road at Dallas Divide in Colorado a couple of years ago.... he is the real deal. I have learned almost all my LR post processing from him when he was with Kelby and have continued to follow him over to On1 as he is the best teacher out there when it comes to Post. Great class and bring him back again. Another great CL class ....... bravo!........ Johnny Boyd @