Skip to main content

Light Painting Processing Exterior

Lesson 6 from: Lightroom and Photoshop for Architectural Photography

Randy Van Duinen

Light Painting Processing Exterior

Lesson 6 from: Lightroom and Photoshop for Architectural Photography

Randy Van Duinen

buy this class

$00

$00
Sale Ends Soon!

starting under

$13/month*

Unlock this classplus 2000+ more >

Lesson Info

6. Light Painting Processing Exterior

Lesson Info

Light Painting Processing Exterior

Now we're gonna go on to light painting. I do a lot of light painting. I do it on interiors and exteriors. In this one, we're gonna work on an exterior. Just to let you know, these are the large files that we're going to use. But for the sake of time, we're gonna go ahead and use some smaller JPEGs because it takes up a lot of layers. We're gonna go ahead and select all the layers right here. We're gonna go to Photo again, Edit In, and Open as Layers in Photoshop. Hopefully this'll go a little bit quicker because they're JPEGs and we'll be able to get it going. These are all the layers that we have. We need to go down and pick out our base layer. I'm gonna come down here. All I'm doing is looking at the sky. I think this is the one that I wanna use for my base layer. I'm gonna go ahead and just drag that to the bottom. That's our base layer. These are all our other layers. But before we work on this, I'm gonna turn them all off, and I wanna select the sky. Some of the other layers are ...

a little brighter, so when we go to do this, that'll be a problem. We're just gonna go to the quick select tool, go ahead and select our sky, come down here, and select some more of this area right here like so. There, that should do it. Now I'll zoom out. What I wanna do is I'm just gonna turn on my next layer and I'm going to create a mask. But it's the wrong way, so I'm going to invert it. There we go, we have our sky. What I wanna do, this is an easy way; I'm gonna turn all these on for you so you can see. If you hold the Option or Alt key and you grab your thumbnail on your mask, you can go ahead and just drag that up to each layer so it's the exact same mask on each one. That'll save a lot of time. There we go; we got the sky that we want, we have our base layer here. Let's go through and just start working on this and see which ones we like and which ones we don't like. Let me zoom in this layer a little bit so we can see now. Here's this one; what's it doing? It's lighting up the side of the house over here. Kinda like that. Don't see any problems, so we're gonna use that one. Oh wait, there's something I forgot to do. Let's take all these up again. Select all those layers and change the blending mode to Lighten. Boom. You can see now all our layers. What Lighten blending mode does is, anything that's lighter will be shown through. And because we've used a flashlight and light painted just certain areas, those are the ones that are gonna come through. Let's go ahead and just now check all these out. This one right here is lighting the front really well, so we're gonna keep that. This one right here isn't doing anything, so we're not gonna use that layer. This one's lighting up the tree over here, but it's also giving me a funky light on the grass over here. On the layer mask, I'm just gonna go ahead and use my paintbrush tool again. I'm gonna change the blending mode to Black and 100% with a big brush and just blend that out a little bit. I don't need that much of it. Actually it's a little funky right here, so let's take that out. Our next layer, not really doing anything, so let's not use that. This one's helping out a lot on the side. I like what's going on, but I don't like what's going on right here on the side. Make sure you're on the layer mask and take that out right there. Go to our next layer. I like what's going down again here, but it's a little hot up here, so I'm just gonna use a big brush at 20% and just take it down a little bit where it's hitting the house right there. I'm also gonna go to 40% and paint out over here where it's coming through. Let's go on our second (mumbles). That one's really lighting up the front. I like that a lot, but I don't like how bright it is here. So again, using our brush, making sure we're on that layer, 30%. Let's take that down a little bit so it's a little bit more even. There we go. I think that's looking good. Now we've gone from our house that was this right here to that really quite easily, just using a flashlight that you can buy at some place like Walmart for $35. You don't have to have an expensive lighting to do this or strobes or anything else. You can actually do it with inexpensive equipment. This was taken in Georgia, and you can see the grass is a little off. It's kinda dying there. What we're gonna do is create a new layer, name it Color again, change the blending mode to Color, and we'll go to our swatches and let's just grab a green. Something like that. All I wanna do is start painting. Let's do it 100%. You can paint in here. You can see it's a nice neon green, just what we wanted, but we'll fix that in a minute. This'll allow you to see what you're doing. We can go ahead and just paint this in. Not being very precise here. If you go over like this, you can always use your erase tool and just take it out. But let's go over here, paint this. I'm not even gonna worry about the black. Come down here, little bit bigger brush, paint in this area here. Let's go over here and do the same. Now we have nice Christmas tree green which is way too much. All we're gonna do is take the opacity and start moving it down until we start to get about where we like it, 25%. You can see it just went from looking like dead grass to a little bit more alive. Maybe we could bring it up a little bit, sort of matches the tree right there. The other area that I don't like is the blue area down here on the driveway. We're getting reflections because we did water down the driveway when we did this. I'm just gonna create another layer, call it Color 2, and change the blending mode to Color. I'm gonna get my brush tool again and just select someplace around the driveway for the color that's around here. Again, just paint it in. Try to blend it in a little bit. There we go. Of course this is too much, so bring your opacity down. Now we've blended in the driveway so it's not a distraction. You can see we went from that to that right there and didn't have to do a whole lot of work. It's actually pretty easy to do this when you're actually out there doing it, light painting. Takes a little bit of time to get used to it. Helps if you have an assistant. If not, having a remote trigger, you can do it. But putting it together in Photoshop is very easy and a great look. I have a lot of clients that like this look. Let's go ahead and save this.

Ratings and Reviews

JennMercille
 

You really can do anything a thousand different ways in Photoshop! Randy broke down his processes with easy to understand instruction, and made it easy to see how and why you would choose different methods to create impressive architectural images in various situations. Great class!

Student Work

RELATED ARTICLES

RELATED ARTICLES