Tutorial Basics

Julia Mourão Missagia reprocessed by  k.g. Sambrano

Until the night


-darkened the exposure

-used clarity and texture settings in LR on the wall to accentuate texture

-Aurora HDR to open up

the shadows and to use their presets filter (unsure)

LR gradient applied from top left corner on a diagonal

-adjusted colour balance to blue and to find pleasing balance

-radial circle to produce the shadows

-In PS dodging and burned and also used layer masks to adjust texture of skin, and to highlight skin

spent a great deal of time on the model's back, as that, to me is the centre of the image, everything around the back is simply support


Leaf and woman (1)


LR and usual workflow. Also turned to BW and adjusted using colour sliders. Focused on the eyes, you'll notice they are brighter. Focused almost exlusively on forehead and face.  Used clarity to smooth out skin removing any texture.



Leaf and woman (2)


Beginning with same image, exported to SilverEfex Pro to find a filter.  Then back to LR to sharpen and increase texture, clarity and sharpness.

Much dodging of the hair. When between PS and LR a least two or three times. Was going for the Karsh look and feel.


Woman Red 


LR gradient filter followed by sharpening, texture and clarity. Dodging and burning of features.  Focus on the eye to brighten.

Finished in PS.


Exercise Click here for video


Serge Ramelli lesson. In LR magenta slider. Export to PS and replace sky using screen method (sky doesn't need to be white).


Exercise Click here for video


Serge Ramelli lesson. Sky replacement and method of extending the sky. New personal method of layer mask (normal) and painting white across images to reduce the high contrast. Could also work using grey, I imagine.

chinatown before.jpg

Exercise Click here for video


Serge Ramelli lesson. Sky replacement using the sky in multiply mode. Import to PS, flip vertical, combine layers. Multiple fills in anything that is white. Anything that is white becomes transparent. Used HDR pre-set for brightness. Then use layer mask to brush out (black conceals, white reveals). Imported into LR, then back to PS.


Exercise Click here for video

00:54 Shoot Panorama in Landscape Mode
01:35 Use the perspective and Boundary Wrap Option
​02:00 Shoot raw for better colors with White Balance
​02:23 Sun = Highlights not too low
03:03 use a little minus clarity for landscapes
03:21 Magenta to kill the green
04:00 Add lights and colors with Radial Filter or Brush
05:34 Use Camera Calibration for even better colors  (Hud 31, Saturation 22, Tint Shadows 5 Radial filter large yellow and magenta )

No gradient filters on top or bottom. Only very slight use of gradient circles or brushes. In PS circle to capture sunset half of photo, layer mask and curves. In curves reduced blue and increased red to create orange. The used black to "conceal". Final layer curves.


Lessons learned

Always look at the cropping sometimes you must sacrifice elements in order to make stronger composition

Use either the gradient or the circle tool to change the  colours be patient to find the right colour

Don't be scared to import/export to photoshop, use the best program for the image knowing you can go back and forth.

Compostion, leading lines into the frame, brightest part of image in the distance to lead the line

Purple and yellow work well together

Dehaze can be  used to make the distance hazy

colour balance is everything

radial circle in the distance nice and bright


Lessons learned

Massive radial circle top of image, using yellow and magenta

Serge Ramelli filter sunset linear, my own vignette, dodging centre, breaking the gradient where possible.


Lessons learned

As a teenager I lived in the pool hall.  Smoke, music, and pinball games.  My friend and I would play, what we coined as, "hack and slash". That is the equivalent of the kitchen sink, no rules, no strategy, it either worked or it didn't.  When I think of the 4 hours it took to process this image, I can't help but think of the hours spent playing pinball. Below is the workflow. It is somewhat stilted as I started over at least three times.

Began in colour and tried playing with the sky, gradient filters,  etc. Nothing worked. Kept it colour to the last minute then exported as colour and changed to bw in PS. Started again importing in PS and making the sky white, and replaced the sky with a pre-shot sky with clouds. Then back to LR with usual workflow. Used the clarity to accentuate sky clouds. Spent a great deal of time breaking the grade on all the buildings starting in LR then to PS. I was relentless.  Used several methods, masks, then dodging and burning tools.  Towards the end I still wasn't happy the image was too contrasty. So I brushed the image with white paint brush. In the end also used circle in top centre of building. And used a few very large circles.  Gradient and vignetting added to the entire image in LR. Painted the trees with white paint brush. Then used layer masks for fore ground.  Dodged all the lights in the foreground.  To date probably the most sophisticated image. Not the best, but the most complex.  The images suffered from no centre point of focus, that is the reason why I placed the bright light at the very top and continued with the extravagant lighting.  Also, did some major cropping to make the image more panoramic.

New stuff

When too contrasting export to LR and bring up the blacks. If still too contrasty,, use layer mask and use contrast control, or simply use a white brush and paint over entire building.  This is a trick I used to use with the dodging tool, but the layer mask approach works best because you can change the luminosity of the layer.

Added note

Next morning brightened the image and cropped.  Lesson learned, always work on a images over at least a two day period.