Westminster fountain at sunset

by Jorge Córdoba

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I just started shooting and postprocess raw. These images of the moon and skies from last night recorded some natural color, as, for instance, a little bit of light blue in the right upper corner of the moon on the second one.. Then, there is this golden, a little salmony, kind of glow in the clouds. I am linking two processed images. Flikr will now allow me to post raw and I don't think I can post here (can I?). The processed ones will at least give you an idea as to what I was trying to accomplish. If there is a way to post here, I will post the raw ones, too.

I have two related questions. (I am not good at technical terminology yet, and simply being descriptive.) 1. How to pull out these natural colors without changing the coloration of the entire image? In other words, I would like this blue to remain blue, only brighter, this golden to remain golden, only brighter, and so on. 2. I played around with software, just intuitively, and very often, applying a function, my images would get "cakey," noisy, with much more grain than an original raw file. Is there a general principle as to how to avoid that? I am using Adobe Photoshop CS6, Adobe Camera Raw from within it. I am just learning how to use Digital Photo Pro that came with my camera (Canon Rebel t3i), and Adobe Lightroom v.5. I would appreciate advice on how to proceed using either one, or all, of these software. With DPP and Lightroom, I will need a more detailed step-by-step instruction because I am just learning these. http://www.flickr.com/photos/96576146@N06/9810680466/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/96576146@N06/9810680456/

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The term you may be looking for is Saturation? That will intensify the colours. –  MikeW Sep 19 '13 at 3:20
    
Advice on the use of Lightroom-5 is worth several books. Google for "Lightroom-5 tutorials" and you'll get links to such books and videos. For example theLightroomLab.com has plenty. –  Esa Paulasto Sep 19 '13 at 7:06

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

What you want to do if you just want to increase the "strength" of a colour is generally to increase the saturation of the image. This is a pretty standard option for image editing software and is generally shown as a scale, where on one end of the scale the image becomes complete desaturated and hence black and white, and on the other end your images will become almost cartoony.

Have a play with this control and see if you like the effect.

Another option that is available in Lightroom (and possibly Photoshop) is to adjust the vibrance. This adjusts more of the mid-tones and has a more natural effect.

To answer the second part, noise is present in all photos but may not always be visible. It is especially a problem when you use a high ISO (which you haven't), long exposures and in darker areas.

One option you can do if your camera allows it is to turn on "High ISO Noise Reduction", for the times that you need to use a High ISO.

In your case though just try not to lighten the shadows too much and that should reduce some noise. And to remove noise you can apply "Noise Reduction" which is available as an option in Lightroom (and probably Photoshop). In edit mode there is a Noise Reduction panel on the right hand side. Increase the strength until the sample window shows the noise smoothed out, just be careful not to do too much or your image will become too soft and lose detail. Adjusting the detail slider can help with this.

Nice photos by the way.

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Thank you very much! –  Lena Borisova Oct 14 '13 at 22:50
    
You are most welcome :) –  codemonkeh Oct 14 '13 at 22:53

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