A great way to lift shadows

Started Feb 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Re: A great way to lift shadows
In reply to guzzibreva1, Oct 16, 2012

guzzibreva1 wrote:

I have tried several different techniques to lighten shadows but have found most methods create halos around light and dark areas.

The method that I have found to work best is a free program called Enfuse. It is normally used as a substitute for HDR methods but it works well on single files.

This example shows an under exposed image that captures the sky but leaves the buildings under exposed.

I exported a brightened image from Lightroom with increased contrast and brightness to help show the buildings. Then this image and the original is blended with Enfuse.

There are none of the nasty halos that you normally get when trying to lift shadows to this extent.

One other nice feature of doing it this way is the brighted image can have more noise suppression used since the shadows with have more noise. You can treat each image the way it looks best before fusing them.

This image is from my K5 with a kit lens so they are a bit soft looking.

First the original.

Photoshop and Aperture can reproduce the same without halos. Here is an Aperture version using the previous shadow/highlight tool. I'm pretty sure this version is also much more like the way scene really looked. There is too much contrast in your sample and a lot of lost highlight and shadow detail.

With Aperture

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