Back Modifications (4)
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she wanted magic, i gave her magic!

By newbornphotography      
I wanted to try something a little different, a magical image was requested and this was my first attempt at a sky overlay. Id love to hear your thought, critique welcome. Thanks in advance

Tags: Portrait photography Portraits and people Photography is Art

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lovely image think the image is a little warm

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banehawi Plus
16 2.2k 4123 Canada
2 Jun 2017 8:11PM
Welcome to EPZ Nicola Ann, and to the critique gallery.

It would help us if you could also upload the photo before sky replacement for comparison, so we can give a more informed opinion. To do this, select the modifications button below the image, the select Upload Modification, and select you original shot.

I will check back, and others will comment also in the interim.


pamelajean Plus
14 1.3k 2132 United Kingdom
2 Jun 2017 8:14PM
Hello, Nicola, and welcome to EPZ. I see that you only joined us quite recently.
This is your first venture into the Critique Gallery, so welcome, I hope you enjoy it here.

I think your overlay works well, apart from the area where the trees meet the sky, which is the part of the image that suggests it has been imported.
I don't know how you selected the tops of the trees, but they look very curvy rather than "jagged", which foliage will be when against a sky. It's a case of zooming in close to the treeline and carefully selecting your edge. After importing the sky, you can use the eraser brush on a low opacity to go over that treeline to feather it gently, then merge the images.. It's a bit tedious and needs a bit of practice, but looks more real.

The minute I saw this image, I wanted there to be something in the girl's hands, something magical, so I have done a modification where I added one of my own fairies. Hope you like it.


PS: Willie and I were typing at the same time. I, too, would like to see the original.
I did struggle with the area around the trees to be honest but as you can see in the modifications they are not far from the original shape, i did zoom in and go around them the best i could. I take on board about the image being a little warm however this was intended. my style in general can be quite vibrant, this image was created for fun and for a surreal look and not to look realistic. Thank you everyone for your comments, great feedback Smile
I will certainly try to achieve a much more realistic sky overlay in the future for my portrait sessions, this however is my daughter, we had fun playing around Smile
Jestertheclown 11 8.2k 252 England
2 Jun 2017 9:43PM
I'd just like to reaffirm what's been said already and congratulations on a job well done!

With regard to the joint between the trees and the sky, it can be a tedious, seemingly, thankless task and Pamelajean's advice above, is sound but given that your background is almost completely; deliberately, out of focus the blurred join on the right hand side looks normal.
If you'd removed those two or so trees that reach above the horizon on the left, before you added the new sky, you'd have had a much smoother join to work with and coincidentally would have avoided that hot spot. I guess that's the sun.

I've tried varying adjusting the warmth by varying degrees and I reckon that the effect will always be subjective. Try as I might, I can't say that any of my attempts look any better than your original.

There's a tiny halo around your daughter's head which can be easily dealt with but overall I think this is an excellent attempt at taking an idea and turning it into something, well, magical!.

Hope this helps.

banehawi Plus
16 2.2k 4123 Canada
3 Jun 2017 5:35PM
Thanks for uploading the original Nicola Ann.

Seeing the original and comparing it to the finished result, this is a really good job. The trees from the original have that edgy appearance, so the inclusion of the new sky is quite seamless. I can be a good idea to soften the tree edges anyway, or as Bren says, remove them, simply to make the transition even smoother.

Nice work


dudler Plus
16 1.1k 1645 England
4 Jun 2017 9:24AM
And welcome from me, too!

Having looked at your website, this is definitely a departure in style! This is the result you wanted, and you did it: that's the important thing.

I wonder about two aspects of the camerawork... My tendency, like yours, is to go for a relatively-unprocessed approach, minimising editing - and just because you are going to be using a PS-heavy approach to some parts of hte final picture doesn't mean that you have to do it with everything... So I wonder if having some sort of light source for the model to hold might make part of the process easier... Some LED sources are very small these days, and can turn up with varied colours.

The other thing is that you're weilding a hefty chunk of glass there, offering significantly more differential focus, if you want it... I don't know the characteristics of the Canon f/1.4 lens, but I'm assuming that wider open would have softened the tree outline further... Though it might have - would have - defined everything else in the background less firmly, as well. Maybe tweaking exposure would also change things a little...

A magical result - I imagine the customer was delighted?
salopian 8 3 28 United Kingdom
5 Jun 2017 4:55PM
A magical result as John says but I think Ian's mod takes it to even higher levels ( colour or mono ) removing the clutter in the background and concentrating on the pretty girl and her magic. Very pleasant.



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