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How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

by on Mar.13, 2011, under Tutorials

How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

This tutorial will show you how to fix those overexposed / washed out photographs with a little bit of Adobe Photoshop CS5 know how.

Step 1

As always we need some photos, I always assume you already have a photo you wish to edit that’s why your here ( isn’t it? icon biggrin How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5 ). Either way you can follow along with the images I’ve used.

This is the washed out photo

1 original washed out sky How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Overexposed Sky

Step 2

And this is the beautiful sky.

2 beautiful sky How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Beautiful Blue Sky

Step 3

So now you should have both of these images open in photoshop.
With the Sky image open, you need to “Select All”

Select –> All or “Ctrl+A”

3 select all of beautiful sky How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Select The Sky

Step 4

Now select the overexposed sky image and then paste the Beautiful blue sky onto it.

Edit–> Paste or “Ctrl+V”

4 paste onto washed out sky How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Paste onto overexposed image

Step 5

The step above number 4, will automatically create a new layer called “Layer 2″. You need to make this invisible by clicking on the little eye icon next to it, like you can see in the image below.

5 disable layer 2 and select layer 1 How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Hide Layer 2 and Select Layer 1

Step 6

Make sure you are still on layer 1. Now you need to select the overexposed sky. The easiest way is using the magic wand tool. Another way is using the Colour Range tool but that will be another tutorial.

6 select the washed out sky How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Select The Washed Out Sky

Step 7

Now you need to inverse that selection, this is because we don’t actually want the sky, its the other parts we are actually after. This will soon become clear.

Select –> Inverse or “Shift+Ctrl+I”

7 select inverse How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Now Inverse The Selection

Step 8

So with Layer 1 still selected and your inverted selection still selected, we need to click on the “Add Layer Mask” icon as seen below.

8 with layer 1 selected add layer mask How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

With Layer 1 Selected Add A Layer Mask

Step 9

So far if all has gone well, this is what you should be seeing.

9 this is what you should see with your layer mask How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

So This Is What You Should See

Step 10

Now drag Layer 2 to the bottom, below or under Layer 1 with the mask and make it visible again. Remember you do this by clicking on where the eye icon was. All should be as below.

10 now drag layer 2 to the bottom and make it visable again How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Now Drag Layer 2 To The Bottom And Make It Visible Again

Step 11

And this is the finished image. So much better than the original image.

11 finished image How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Finished Image

Step 12

As you can see from the Before And After image below, this has significantly improved this image. You may have even deleted this from your digital camera and wasted what could be such a great photo. With a few minutes in photoshop you can end up with  a cracker! The great thing too is you can choose and sunset, sunrise, night time shot, star trails, anything you want!

12 before and after How To Fix An Overexposed Sky With Photoshop CS5

Before And After

 

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