Making sky blue or bluer in Aperture 3?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Ardoptres, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. Ardoptres, Apr 17, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2011

    Ardoptres macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2009
    #1
    Hello.
    I've searched and can't find answers:

    Is it possible to make the sky blue or bluer in Aperture? I have a lot of pictures with a sky like this, which I would like to look a lot richer:

    [​IMG]

    Also, is it possible to add some kind of 'sunlight-effect'?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Doylem macrumors 68040

    Doylem

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    Location:
    Wherever I hang my hat...
    #2
    Cloudy sky to blue? "Sunlight effect"? "Turning base metals into gold"?

    Hmmm, you're asking a lot from photographic software. :)

    At the risk of telling you what you already know, the secret to most outdoor photography - cityscapes, landscapes, etc - is making use of the light that's available and turning it to your advantage. This where the skill - and most of the fun - is, IMO.
     
  3. mlblacy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Location:
    the REAL Jersey Shore
    #3
    over the top... but... you get the idea...

    Check out Nikon's NIK suite of plug-ins (I think the entire thing was selling for around $175 on Amazon a few weeks ago). Using Color Efex Pro3, there is a filter called reflector effects that lets you bounce in light, and also the Viveza2 app gives you a lot of selective control over your image. Worth every penny, and I use them every day...
    michael

    [​IMG]Click for large view - Uploaded with Skitch
     
  4. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

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    #4
    Those bright gray skies really suck. On my trip to New Zealand thats what I had almost every single day :( Needless to say I didn't come back with many keepers.

    Most photogs in a situation like this either A. Do what was mentioned above and use the light you have (although this doesn't always work, especially if you are after landscape shots)

    Or B. Stick a sky in there, but this requires lots of work and very accurate color matching to get a realistic result.
     
  5. Waybo, Apr 17, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2011

    Waybo macrumors regular

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    New Hampshire
    #5
    Hello, Ardoptres,

    I am a newbie, so I'm NOT an expert. However, if this were my shot, I'd give up on making the sky blue in Aperture. Photoshop elements might give you more flexibility, and I haven't tried any of the Aperture plugins. Maybe someone else will have ideas in that regard.

    You could also try making it mono-color - sepia or b&w.

    I'm not sure what you mean by a "sunlight-effect." Sun rays? Same answer. But if you mean adding warmth, you could try playing with levels and shadows.

    There is a spot in the upper left corner that concerns me. Is that a reflection? If you took this through glass -- then you would neutralize some of the colors, in the building and in the sky. It's not always possible, but try not to shoot through glass.

    Hope this helps, and you get some other ideas from others, too.

    ==============
    PS: apologies to mlblacy and chrono1081, who posted while I wrote this, and took a phone call!
     
  6. dcains macrumors regular

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    Mar 27, 2007
    #6
    I did these in LR3 w/o any plug-ins, although now I do own the Nik plug-ins and they're very useful. Just got the Topaz Labs plugins, too, but haven't had much time to check them out much. Both are installable to Aperture.

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    After:
    [​IMG]
     
  7. flosseR macrumors 6502a

    flosseR

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2009
    Location:
    the cold dark north
    #7
    sorry man, but at least on my (calibrated) screen here the second picture looks exactly like it should not... overprocessed. The blue is WAY too harsh and makes the image look fake and, at least in my case, irritating actually... distracting.. tone the blue down a bit and its good but as is now its way overdone.

    to the op: sorry but with dull even grey skies there is no nope. next time shoot when there is SOME clouds, even light ones and then in aperture, in the adjustments click on: ADJUSTMENTS -> CURVES .. then drag the curve until you like the SKY!.. nothing else but the sky. then click on the little setting icon in the curves (look like a small gear wheel) and click on BRUSH IN. then just paint over the dull sky and it will make it dramatic.


    but as is.. pretty difficult.
    PLEASE note: this will work best if you have a RAW file.
     
  8. dcains macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    #8
    I could not agree more - just showing what's possible, and I certainly know better than to over-process a photo so over-the-top. I created that LR preset during a stay at the hospital (not visible on the left) and I was bored out of my head. I had my MacBook and Canon G9 with me, and wanted to create something to emulate a CPL. The levels are adjustable, but it's not a preset I actually ever use.


     
  9. mlblacy macrumors 6502

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    the REAL Jersey Shore
    #9
    skylight filter, etc... NIK

    I am bonkers about the combo of NIK & Aperture3. You can download fully functional demos (15 days). The cost for the whole kitten kaboodle is often not too much more than the cost for one component, and it goes on sale fairly often. MOST software I have used is overrated and not worth the price when compared to the benefits, so I love when you can have full demos to try out and see for yourself.

    Color Efex3 has 2/3 filters that can add light or the appearance of it.
    Reflector Effects, Skylight Filter & also Sunshine. The first two I use extensively, while the Sunshine one I haven't gotten the knack of yet.
    If you go here, you can click on each filter within Color Efex:
    http://www.niksoftware.com/colorefexpro/usa/entry.php?view=intro/cep3_filters.shtml

    Also, Viveza 2 also lets you selectively manipulate your image in a myriad of ways, but doesn't offer the filter like effects like Color Efex has. Once you understand how NIK works in one product, you pretty much get the others as well. Their use of "control points" lets you selectively target specific areas of an image, by its color/tone etc.

    While there is no substitute for a well exposed image shot in nice light, these filters let you reclaim many subpar images much easier than you could do in pshop (or at least a lot quicker).

    On another front, I really love A3's use of presets. There are some good free ones by Gavin Seim, and he also makes a large collection for around $39. Not sure if he has a demo, but you can download the freebies to see if you like what it does. For me the collection was worth every penny as well. Some of the presets can make a dramatic difference (although to turn murky skies to blue, you really need something more akin to the NIK suite).

    http://prophotoshow.net/seim_effects/seim-lf-aperture-presets/

    cheers,
    michael
     
  10. Riqiv macrumors newbie

    Riqiv

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #10
    Using the Levels Brick

    Aperture is amazingly powerful and I've forgotten much of what I learned from the Apple Pro Training Series book. So I fiddle around a lot since I use it only occasionally.

    Using the Levels Brick you can see the effect I got on a dark sky to make it blue. I keep my favorite brick effects in default and usually get what I need.

    Hope this helps :)
     

    Attached Files:

  11. driftless macrumors 65816

    driftless

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    Location:
    Chicago-area
    #11
    This thread has a lot of mid-day shots with middling light. Not only might you have to try again at a different time of day you might have to try again at different month or season. IMHO post should never be about totally redefining the "truth" of the photograph.
     
  12. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

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    Oregon
    #12
    Enhance-->Tint-->White and brushed in (done quickly). Curves to bring out detail in building.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. Riqiv, Sep 10, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012

    Riqiv macrumors newbie

    Riqiv

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    Jun 18, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #13
    Retouching Photos

    Retouching photos has been done since the start of photography, from adding ectoplasm to fake photos to removing blemishes for ads.

    I picked a dark photo just to quickly show it could be done, and thought about using it as a wide shot photo cover shot (as in Facebook or on a webpage).

    The same can be done on Aperture to a photo taken any time of day (if you know how).

    I've taken a photo of my iPhone and turned the face of it from blue to pink for fun, and just to learn - it's almost surreal ;)

    Can't upload them here so they're on Flickr:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/53954296@N05/sets/72157631508973547/

    The finished "Statue of Liberty" is attached above and is "brushed in" on Aperture and was a subject I decided to download from Google pics.

    Anyone know if there's an upload limit here?
    And if so, how many MB's?
    _____

    Mostly I did this just to answer the question at the top of this post:
    "Is it possible to make the sky blue or bluer in Aperture? I have a lot of pictures with a sky like this, which I would like to look a lot richer."

    Here's the daytime pic brushed in VERY quickly on Aperture.

    If you want to make a sky bluer or take a couple pounds off a model, I say why not . . . unless you're Ansel Adams.
     

    Attached Files:

  14. HoldFastHope macrumors 6502

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    Jan 15, 2008
    Location:
    Sydney, AU
    #14
    If there's some blue in the sky and it's just been washed out, try reducing the brightness and then increasing the blue/cyan saturation either globally or selectively.

    If the sky is filled with grey clouds, you're looking at a Photoshop composite job :)

    Neither are a good substitute for a proper exposure in ideal conditions, of course.
     
  15. blanka macrumors 68000

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    Jul 30, 2012
    #15
  16. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #16
    You're trying to make overcast skies cloudless.
    Nope, not gonna happen. For any of these to give realistic results, you have to have at least a little bit of sky, but your photo's completely covered in clouds.

    Usually photographers love overcast skies because of the diffused light that results from the clouds, but your photo seems to scream otherwise.

    Try making it black and white. I know it sounds cliché, but black and white can make a photo interesting. Boring skies can look suddenly very dramatic because of the better contrast between the sky and the clouds. You might want to try that and see if you get anything good.
     
  17. Randy McKown macrumors member

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    Jun 24, 2011
    Location:
    Kansas City
    #17
    You can make that sky any color you want by making a color monochrome adjustment. Here is a step by step tutorial that covers several things including color monochrome adjustments ... Aperture Tutorials
     
  18. Blackberryroid macrumors 6502a

    Blackberryroid

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    #18
    Try masking out the sky, change the temperature and boost the saturation.
     

    Attached Files:

  19. WRP macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Boston
    #19
    There's a lot of post options here explained that should help you.

    Unfortunately no one has given you the ultimate answer on how to NOT get crappy sky in the first place. Invest in a good polarizer filter.

    That's probably the worst information here.
     
  20. slackmachine macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    #20
    That looks like a pretty gray sky, I'm not sure you'll get much blue out of that. But I've found the polarizing and burning brushes are the best for enhancing the sky; they darken it if it's blown out and seem to bring out some blue, at least for me. Good luck!
     
  21. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

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    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #21
    Lots of grey skies here often in Oregon (although no rain in three months???) and I've never found a polarizing filter useful in those situations. The clouds diffuse the light and the polarizer does nothing. They are great for darkening a clear blue sky, though.
    His results were garish, but it isn't bad when toned down, as in the two earlier examples (including mine) in this thread which are basically doing the same thing. In all cases it's like trying to make a silk purse from a sow's ear. In these conditions I try to aim low and minimize the amount of sky in the picture!
     

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