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Thread: Sky hard to edit

  1. #1

    Default Sky hard to edit

    I'm very new to photography. This is my first time going out to take night landscapes. I went to city hall and took some shots. Here are the results:











    Somehow my sky looks very graduated. Is it because my post-processing sucks? lol. I know my compositions are damn bad. Any other pointers? ><
    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    More photos








  3. #3

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    More photos






  4. #4

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    Maybe because I'm too newbie to understand your question. What do you mean by "sky hard to edit" and "sky looks very graduated"?

    The time that you took these photos were not the best for good light, the compositions are not great, but I'm not quite sure what you think is wrong with the skies here.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    like..... the sky looks like it has many "layers" instead of being smooth. lol

  6. #6

    Default

    Unless you go to the deepest, darkest desert, far far away from any city, then shoot only at around midnight, you will not get a night sky without background light bleed causing some gradation.
    Alpha

  7. #7

    Default

    long exposure + buildings with lights ...

    nt suprised. shoot earlier

  8. #8

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    as for the "layered" look, that comes from JPEG compression. You'll need to save at a higher image quality level (11-12 in Photoshop) to avoid them.

    As for touch-up, plenty of tutorials online, but if you keep on saving at higher compression levels (lower picture quality) it won't make a difference.

    Enhancing The Sky In An Image With Photoshop

    How to Make Skies Beautiful with GIMP: 15 steps (with pictures)
    Alpha

  9. #9

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    thanks. means i need to reduce my exposure + shoot at a earlier time? btw, time of shot is ~10pm-2am.

    GG. LOL.
    Last edited by holyxiaoxin; 11th March 2013 at 06:02 PM.

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by holyxiaoxin View Post
    thanks. means i need to reduce my exposure + shoot at a earlier time? btw, time of shot is ~10pm-2am.

    GG. LOL.
    No, it means you need to work on not over-compressing your jpeg files to remove the banding. As for gradation, move to another continent. Far far away from cities.
    Alpha

  11. #11

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    alright >< thanks.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    You're probably referring to posterization / banding.

    What is posterization / banding
    
Posterization occurs when the color depth (bit depth) is not sufficient to sample a continuous gradation of color tone and thus, we end up with a series of (discrete) steps or bands. Unwanted posterization is called banding.

    How to prevent posterization / banding
    It is better to prevent posterization / banding than to deal with it. Here is how:

    

- Pay attention to your RGB histogram

    Apparently, preventing posterization / banding when taking the shot(s) is the best solution. Especially in long exposure photography, you should be careful when shooting and always try to get the best exposure possible. Overexposure (oversaturation of any channel) lies at the very heart of posterization / banding.

    - Work with more tones & use 16-bit processing
    Needless to say that photographers must shoot all images in raw. Since posterization / banding is caused when little information is spread too far apart, it is absolutely essential to shoot and start your processing with raw files.

    
Also, edit your photos in 16-bit mode to reduce your chances of posterization / banding and don’t forget to export them into 16-bit formats with as high resolution / analysis as possible.

    - Subtle post-processing
    Somewhat simplistic but true. Minimising the amount of image editing and cropping, or using tools that don’t spread the tones apart (for example Brightness / Contrast instead of Curves or Levels) may be a life saver.

    How to deal with posterization / banding
    The problem can be solved by adding noise. Small (so it is not noticeable) amounts of noise will hide the bands and thus, the viewer can no longer detect the edges.

    It is also highly advisable to experiment with (Gaussian) blur after adding noise to smudge the (remaining) color bands.

    

However, adding noise (that we usually try to remove) should take place after editing and cropping but before the final sharpening.



    Last but not least, note that posterization / banding will be (more) visible on platforms and mediums that require (some level of) compression. This might explain why you may notice posterization / banding on a photo online but not when you print it.

    Photographico | C. Sergios Photography Posterization / Banding

  13. #13

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    get better light like golden hours, 1hr before sunset

    many PnS camera and handphone can take nicer image.
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  14. #14

    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    Quote Originally Posted by Shizuma View Post
    get better light like golden hours, 1hr before sunset

    many PnS camera and handphone can take nicer image.
    err meaning, take a good photo, no need edit so much.
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  15. #15
    Senior Member digitalpimp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sky hard to edit

    1. Shoot early in the evening. Personal preference is from 7:20-7:45PM.
    2. If possible, work in 16-bit color.
    3. Good luck.

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