I have developed enough post processing skill in over an year to create moods in my photos as I prefer (mainly dark moody photos with low saturation).

However, when it comes to showing drama in the sky with vibrant colours, I really suffer. Often, I realize that a lot of visible colour noise has developed in the water portion (fast shutter with enough ripples) in the process. I always remove in-camera colour noise before changing any kind of tones in the image. Have a look at this recent image I have been working on, what can I do to avoid it: Rough draft

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    The colours in the water are simply those reflected from the sky; made more obvious by the massive colour boost used on the entire picture.
    – Tetsujin
    Dec 17, 2021 at 9:36

3 Answers 3


Really, the only true 'fix' for this is to not bang the colours quite so hard in the first place…
or, I suppose, to have used a polarising filter to kill the majority of the reflections before they reached the sensor.

From what you already have, a workaround would be to mask out one half of the image & reduce saturation in that. There are many ways to do this, here's one… All done in Photoshop, other graphics apps should have similar control. Images all intentionally small.

Select the lower half using the Magnetic Lasso tool

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Use Layer > New > Layer via cut

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Dial back the saturation, vibrance &/or perhaps also selectively dial out saturation from magenta through to orange, leaving blues & greens.

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Result - dull water & land, overkill bright sky.
You could extend this further by intentionally re-toning the water to be a more uniform blue.

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In all honesty, I'd start with less overall colour-punch &/or use a 'smarter' app; something like Luminar can do this type of thing a lot more subtly [or a lot less subtly, if you push it;)


what can I do to avoid it:

The general answer is to use selective edits to affect only the desired areas, rather than global "slider" adjustments.


your photo is a great sunset view, but in a very evening weather, if you adjust the darkness to a little lighter sunset hours, that is, if you lighten it a little, we could see the water hitting the mountains more clearly, the color noises would be sharper, but i like the result.

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