Jaharana

Since my previous blog post was so popular, I decided to talk about Nik software again.  This time I am changing the entire look of a studio shot (because I can).  This photo was shot on a seamless white background with a cross light configuration.

In post processing I again used Nik Color Efex with the Midnight and Low Key filters.  The background texture mask is from a piece of sheet metal I photographed.

Here’s a before and after for your enjoyment.



Midnight with Nik




The final edit

This Daredevil cosplay shot of Valda (@valda_cosplay) was taken in the bright afternoon at the FDR Monument in Washington DC.  I loved this gender-bent cosplay and it was really a fun shoot!  Valda was doing a great job of modeling, but I know the afternoon light on that stone wall wasn’t going to give me the right mood.

Using Photoshop along with Nik Color Efex Pro4, I turned a fairly bright afternoon shot into a low key shot with a night time mood.  For this transition I used a combination of two filters, Midnight and Low Key.  On the Low Key filter, I used the Dynamic Low Key slider to control separation between Valda’s clothing and the background.

After making the Color Efex adjustments, I was left with a very dark and heavy handed edit – very unflattering as you will see below.  So finally I added a mask to the Color Efex layer in Photoshop to remove most of effect from Valda’s face and hair.

The images you see here are:

1.  Original SOOC image

2. The final edit

3. Color Efex Low Key Filter Only

4. Color Efex Midnight Filter Only

5. Low Key and Midnight Filters combined (prior to masking)

Note that there’s probably no editing function in the the Nik suite of tools that can’t be done with the native tools withing Photoshop (or any other editing software), but Nik does provide some very useful ways to get the looks you want, especially if you know how to combine the filters with layer masks.

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