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Basic Post Processing for Landscape Photographers

Lesson 4 of 4

Shooting with Polarizers, Long Exposures and City Lights

Matt Kloskowski

Basic Post Processing for Landscape Photographers

Matt Kloskowski

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Lesson Info

4. Shooting with Polarizers, Long Exposures and City Lights

Lesson Info

Shooting with Polarizers, Long Exposures and City Lights

Polarizer, this is a this is a good one, too. So photographing wide angle lens, you put a polarizer on uh, we put polarizer is on for a couple of reasons. One is to kind of boost the sky a little bit, boost the sky and the clouds get a little bit of a color boost from it too is to reduce glare and that's to me too. I don't care as much about the sky. The sky is really easy to change and lightman photoshopped but glare once glare is there you really can't remove it. So that's primarily why I use a polarizer is I want to remove claire and what it will do. And the the effect of that is you get a color boost. So perfect example. And if I zoom in on this photo and zooming back here, this is the non polarized one. Okay, this is the polarized one, so take a look. Keep it on, keep it on this area right over here, non polarized, so well washed out, faded, polarized, good color, all right, same thing. I mean, I think if you you kind of went up into this part of the photo, you'd see something ver...

y similar, non polarized, kind of faded, polarized, get a nice color on so to me well that's why I used my polarizer leaves fall colors, water all that's a polarizer zor great problem is in a photo like this if you put the polarizer on what's going wide angle photo what happens? You get that dip because you're polarizer your polarizer has the most effect ninety degrees like if the sun's here and I'm ninety degrees facing that way that's where I get that effect from my polarizer the most effect ok as it moves either way it reduces that affected you put put your sunglasses on, put your sunglasses on and people look at you funny but tilt your head and you'll see it you know and that's what I do like when I'm out in the field before I put a polarizer on five my sunglasses all kind of just tilt my head back and forth to see if it affects the scene um but you'll get that dip with wide angle lens because it's just too why you're capturing too much of an area so we use our same scenario here photo ended in open as layers and photoshopped it's going to stack them on top of each other and we're just going to use our selection tools to get the best of both worlds but it's recognising to me the biggest part of this is recognizing ahead of time that this could happen right in the field take two photos put your polarizer on take the photo it's a circular polarizer so you don't even have to take it off you can just turn it towe where it's not polarizing the scene and then take another photo on a tripod so that the lineup just like they will here but that's what a lot of these things therefore they're just things to know out no upfronts that way we know that we can fix it and photo shop later if we have to so here's our example so I'm going to take my quick selection tool we have good foreground bad sky and we have good sky on top so I know I want to keep the sky so I'm just going to take my quick selection tool and just make a real quick selection um if it ever selects too much if you hold down the option cheon mac or the cham p c you can remove it okay so we have our selection what's our rule with a rule with a layer mask if we add a layer mascot we have something selected whatever selected stays so I clicked the layer mask icon and that sky stays now I get the good rocks the polarized foreground all the good color and non glaring us from that and I get the good sky from the other one on top of it and I haven't been doing this guys but to get backto light room just go file save okay, file safe takes you right back to light room you have to do anything you want to change the name location renamed nothing, just file save and head back to like question when you're making this election and if you click on refine image in the past I have been just clicking on the bottom save ah copy with a mask if I make a selection in the first one, is there a difference if you have the two photos if you import the two photos and know that's a great question actually so um basically when I'm in refined ej let's don't even show you what I'm in refined edge open his layers um there's an option at the bottom I've been saving when I click okay basically gives me I save it as a selection, so make a selection and go to refine edge make my changes output to selection your your question of your way is if you change it to layer mask is actually better because it doesn't work for me it just made it into a layer mask so I was taking the long way around I save it as a selection, but yet you're way, which is to save it as a layer mask actually removes that extra step of me, adding the layer mask so perfectly acceptable I just like to do it the hard way, I guess sometimes if I think about it, I do it's it's set this election and I don't have a good answer for that, but I'll have to rooting out now that you did it the right way, I'll have to go back, okay? So here's the cool one so if you didn't like the sky replacement, you're probably disclosures because you're probably not gonna like this one at all, so, like the sky replacement, you're certainly not going to like how I fake blur my clouds for long exposures, but yes, I do so here we got a photo and go run through I haven't been doing so much of the late room stuff, but would edit the photo, boost the exposure a little bit, whites, blacks, warm it up a little bit like that, crank up the saturation because we can so all right, so let's say, I did my light homework and I had the choice of putting minute I did not forget my neutral density filter. By the way, for this photo shoot, I had the choice of putting it on, and when I looked at it, I'm like, you know, I know I completed the clouds pretty quick, clean photoshopped it because maybe I don't think it was in my camera back and my camera bag was probably a hundred yards away hey so I could have gone it could have gotten it put it on and then you got to calculate the exposures and there's an app for that and it's not it's not the end of the world I love long exposure so trust me I don't mind doing it but when I look at something like this and I know the on ly thing that the long exposure is going to do for me is blurred the clouds and I know that I could do that in about thirty seconds and photoshopped I might not take that extra effort in camera okay so let's go jump over and we'll make our selection remember if it's select too much you just hold down the option rocky get rid of it so we have our selection will go filter go down here to blur gallery and there's this blurring here called a path color and so the way the path blur works is is it blurs along a path so I could look I want to do that I could move this little guy keep him there and notice the way it's blurring I'll increase the speed setting say it or you could even do it along a curve which I would not suggest for this photo we we've got crazy clouds or you can do what I would do for this food which is I'm gonna brain fact turn this one that way so to me my favorite long exposure sky photos when the clouds are coming at you and you get that long exposure because they kind of like they streak this way I don't like it so much when they streak like if I'm looking at a scene and the clouds are moving this way I won't normally put my andy filter on to try to capture because I don't like the streaky side one but if I look at a scene in the clouds were coming at me for going away I love that you just get that feeling with a wide angle lens so I'll put one here and then you can actually click and drag and add another one so now I can go in there and you can kind of see it's emanating the side I've got to move them I'm going to move it off to the left a little bit because I don't want to be perfectly centered put one in the middle then it gets crazy because now I can start doing crazy things let's delete that one by you guys get the idea I know you're like you're dying inside aren't you you're like no stop the those poor clouds your speed setting will control how blurry they get all right yeah we don't want to go that high you're taper setting will start to because it's just going to blur everything your taper setting will taper it from the beginning in the end so you can increase your tape or setting a little bit too ah centered blur is just going to put it right into the center there endpoint speed kind of like drags and point out so it actually extends the edges your clouds a little bit I don't know that I'd go that far but you get the idea of pride pull back that's one a little bit of a blur click okay so that's before after I could probably even added a little bit more to it but um if you want to do fake blur which you can't do your not you weren't up for the sky replacement so it automatically eliminates you from fake blurring yes sir what about in this case? You know, I always feel like I have to stand up when you stand in this photo you have the sky in the water and so if you're adding the blind, I know I knew something was going to catch that yeah, you know the sky is reflected in the water, so if you're being really really picky, you'd have to go in there and blow the water to, um or just don't blur the sky this photo if you don't want to do that much work so but yeah figured something's gonna pick up I can categorize myself more is an outdoor photographer I guess a landscaping outdoor because I love I love landscapes but also like cityscapes and I just I like to be outdoors so to me cityscapes are fair game like if you look at the definition of a landscape its lack of anything manmade that takes out cityscapes for me so I had to call myself something else but I love I love ah love cities one of the things that I do is I love shooting cityscapes that have like traffic arthur's things in them the one thing that you'll see is and when it comes teo photographing skylines is if you take a photo when the sky looks good right when there's a little bit of color in the sky right after the sun goes down you take that photo the lights in the building look kind of like this because it's still kind of brighter you don't see him as much if you hang around for another twenty minutes then you get the lights to look better and so you guys can get mean it was the same thing as the polarizer one right? I bring them both in the photo shop make a selection of the sky dropped the color drop the more colorful sky this is ella that might be smog but I'll call it color um but I just dropped the more colorful sky into the into the photo but just ah infact I did one didn't want to see that last time I was in seattle you guys you guys probably like hate this view but just so you guys know you might hate the view the everybody else it's seriously you think like I never took a better picture it got like more like some facebook than anything I ever opposed it um but this one since the better one probably yeah, that one like I said, I know you guys are tired of it you live in seattle not another word, not another shot from carrie park but just so you know, you live in a beautiful city because the rest of the world loves seriously it's like that my by far my most liked photo ever I posted on facebook but same kind of concept is is if you're shooting right as the sun goes down the whites don't appear quite as much and if you wait another thirty minutes the lights will appear better but then you've lost a lot of that color in the sky so you just the same concepts layer on top of each other make a selection so all right, I'm up for questions. All right? Well, we'll start over here um one of our users like to know for multi image composites, the focus stacking and the sky replacements do you do the basic adjustments before after you make your composition good question so sky replacements multi photo images I'll do the basic adjustments first before I jump into anything else, not to say that there might not be some work to do after once you get everything together. Sometimes that's where a lot of the stylization comes in because we had these photo effects on top and they tend to smooth out. You have a color effect or something like that. But that most of the time, uh, most time's gonna be I do it all before, okay? And do you ever do any sharpening in photo shop? You mentioned you, you kind of start with it and adobe camera raw? Do you ever finish up with anything at the end? So the only time I'll ever do the sharpening and photo shop is if I need really selective sharpening, it doesn't happen too much on my landscape photos, but it will happen. Maura, unlike portrait's, where maybe I want to sharpen the eyes or something. And then that way I'll open a photo shop and I can add a layer. I can sharpen it and then just painted in and out of the places that I need. So if I need some specific sharpening, I'll do it that way.

Class Description

Do you want outdoor photographs that reflect the beauty and mood of the landscape that you see with your naked eye? In Basic Post Processing for Landscape Photographers, Matt Kloskowski will show you how to use Photoshop to enhance your outdoor images so they reflect the world as you actually see it.

In this class you'll learn the latest techniques that give those beautiful places the same color, atmosphere, detail, and feeling that they had when you took the photo. You’ll learn how to Photoshop landscape photos, and efficient post processing techniques to bring out the contrast and color you saw when you took the photo in the first place.

This course is part of the Lightroom tutorials series. 

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 2014.2.2, Adobe Lightroom 5


Scott H

The course description led me to buy into the class. Like a lot of people I had some reservation as to how it would be presented. I've taken other types of online course before. And I have say the presenter may have knew his material. But it was delivered in such a manor I retained far to little to be of any real benefit. But in this case. I can't tell you how impressed I am with CreativeLive and Matt Kloskowski. Matt breaks this information down into basic functions. And gives you real world scenarios as to how to best utilize the techniques. All the while reaffirming the notion that these rules and techniques can be varied for each users individual style and needs. The fact I can go back online and review this material from time to time, big bonus. As a result I've signed up for two more classes. Matt's personable and engaging personality makes this a winning combo for novice photographers like myself. I couldn't be happier with CreativeLive and Matt !


Terrific Class! One of the best I have taken from Matt. Mostly good, basic material, but there are some real gems that Matt shares here. Highly recommended.

Tracy Layton Peterson

Loved it!!! Great information that was very USEABLE to me. Matt was is a great instructor, throwing in some humor as well as bits of information that may not be dead on point but really helpful just the same. I was able to bring the quality of my editing up considerable just from this class alone. Thank you