Back Modifications (5)
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By magicman
Shot behind St Marys Church in Melton Mowbray, trying to get a more natural light, should I invest in some filters or is photoshop the best way to do this?

Tags: Street Night shot

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Robert51 12 7 122 United Kingdom
5 Feb 2016 8:38AM
Hi magicman I love this type of image where a place makes you feel unsure if you should walk down.

I have uploaded a mod where the light is a little warmer and kept the darks that little bit darker.

On your question I use to carry lots of various filters but now do it with software. Lightroom and Photoshop are the way to go but are a lot of money if your unsure. Why not try Gimp which is based on Photoshop and is free to download from the web. This will give you a good idea if you want to invest in Photoshop. There are lots of video's on youtube to get you started. Just an idea...

dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1861 England
5 Feb 2016 9:48AM
The advice to try Gimp is sound - incredibly versatile, and free! Shareware is wonderful.

Other options at a fraction of the price of Photoshop are Adobe Elements (less versatile, but very possibly all the editing power you'll ever need) and Paintshop Pro (around the same price as Elements but pretty nearly as powerful as full PS).

Definitely, you need to try some basic editing, rather than looking to buy filters: things like rotate (to correct the verticals here) and colour correction are so simple (once you've found where they are on the screen!) Indeed, colour filters are all but extinct on the new market (I still use film a bit, and there is no PS solution there, so I am very much aware that my glass is not easily replaceable!)

Robert and I have both assumed that it's colour and the tilt that you are thinking about - but please say if there are other aspects of the shot that you want to manipulate.
salopian 9 3 28 United Kingdom
5 Feb 2016 11:00AM
I travel through Melton fairly regularly and always admire the fine church ( and the pork pies!) so this pleasant image attracted me. On my screen it looks to have a blue cast which Robert and John have addressed in their mods and also straightened it up at the same time. Nice work.

magicman 11 4 England
5 Feb 2016 12:29PM
Thank you all for the helpful comments and mods.
I have photoshop and lightroom on trial. I have now found the straightening and crop tool so will use that in future.
I had played around with tint and in retrospect perhaps i should have uploaded the original for help.
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
5 Feb 2016 12:48PM
I've never used filters on the lens for colour correction, so can't comment on what I don't know. However, I do know that you can use colour correcting gels on things like flashguns, in order to change the perceived 'colour' within your scene.

Photographing under artificial light (like that lamp post) will nearly always give you a colour cast of some description. And most photo editing software will give you the option to remove it (or certainly reduce it to the extent where it's not so obvious).

I'm also assuming that's what you mean when you say that you're "...trying to get a more natural light"?

In my mod, all I've done (apart from a little bit of CC rotation and noise reduction) is to sample the warmth of the tungsten light, and then add a Photo filter of the opposite hue (so a blue tone). Then I adjusted the density of that so that it retained some warmth, but nowhere near as much as you had. One of the problems with doing that, however, was that the blue tone amplified the blue tones already in the image's shadow areas so I then had to remove those ...

So as you can see, although software is great and can do many wonderful things, it can be a bit of a balancing act to get it close to right and get the effect you're after. Is it worth it? Oh yeah, without a doubt Smile but it takes practice. If you're willing to put that time in and practice, then you'd reap the benefits of using photo editing software.

And, if you don't already have any kind of editing software, I'll add my vote for GIMP - as John says, it's good, it's free ... what's not to like?!

magicman 11 4 England
5 Feb 2016 2:33PM
Thank you Tanya, that looks great. I will have a look at Gimp I think and make my decision after a play
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
5 Feb 2016 2:47PM
Sorry Trevor, I hadn't realised you'd already replied while I was typing out my comment Smile

I'd say that if you've got Photoshop and Lightroom on trial (presumably the pay monthly CC versions?) then that would be the way to go, if you don't mind paying the monthly fee. GIMP's great if you've got no other options, but Photoshop it ain't Grin
banehawi Plus
17 2.5k 4247 Canada
5 Feb 2016 4:23PM
Just be aware the Lightroom and Photoshop are two different beasts. Though there's loads of functionality in LR than will cover most needs, Photoshop is considerably more powerful, and can do a lot more. Something to keep in mind.

You basic Microsoft picture viewer can straighten this no problem.


banehawi Plus
17 2.5k 4247 Canada
5 Feb 2016 4:56PM
Different approach to a mod uploaded.

dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1861 England
5 Feb 2016 5:04PM
Can I add - one of the things in a scene like this is that the lighting is mixed, almost always... You can only correct the colours fully if all the light in the picture comes from the same (or very similar) sources. Otherwise, there will be parts of the picture that 'look wrong' (or at least different) whatever you do.
paulbroad 13 131 1293 United Kingdom
5 Feb 2016 8:19PM
I'm intrigued by which filters you might use to give more natural lighting, particularly on a night shot? Might consider white balance changes, but unlikelyas the olour of the light at night often helps. Filters are generally going to do no good other than the occasional use of effects filters such as cross screens.

Thi is a perfectly adequate night image without anything to really ake itstand out. It lacks any instant impact which a cross screen or dramatic lighting might bring.

Don't waste money on the full version of Photoshop. Even the keenest phootographers do not need it. It is a professional processing tool and everything a good photogrpher needs is in Paintshop Pro or Elements. I use the full version only because I won it. I also won Photoshop 7 many years ag, which I still have on an older laptop and it works well.

Save the cash! I have used both Paintshop Pro and Elements in the past and they did all I needed, even when operating as a freelance for nealy 10 years.

dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 776 England
5 Feb 2016 8:31PM
There's lots of good replies already. I've not long got on to the site this evening so for what it's worth i'll add my bit.

If by 'natural' you mean 'faithful' colour then in mixed lighting you'll always struggle as different parts of the image will be influenced by different lights. If you want to do umpteen localised corrections go ahead but I find life's too short for that.
On the other hand, embrace the different colour casts that you get.
Many lamps are difficult to correct for as they don't emit a continuous spectrum. Think of the blue/green white of mercury vapour lamps. And as for the old low pressure sodium lamps, well, they only emitted one wavelength of orange.

In the 'old days' a bagful of warming, and cooling filters would be in most photographers outfits. Thank goodness for software where corrections are just a click away. And you can fine tune those corrections very precisely if you want or just get something you like. Often I go for 'correct' then alter the sliders to get something I find more pleasing.

If you shoot RAW then you can make these adjustments with a lot of control in e.g. Lightroom. You can do it with jpgs too but with RAW there is more control and the changes are non-destructive.

For this shot you must have used a tripod as the shutter speed is 0.6 seconds. so in that case for improved image quality (better detail and lower noise) you could have shot at ISO 400 and used a shutter speed of 5 seconds. Neither do you need f/13 here. The lens will perform at it's best at f/8 to f/11. Tat will provide sufficient depth of field even at 70 mm focal length.
magicman 11 4 England
8 Feb 2016 2:57PM
Great help everyone thank youSmile

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