Sound Clouds

I’ve been intending to load up some cloud images. These were shot over Long Island Sound late one afternoon while traveling on the ferry from New London.

For a change of pace, I’ll talk a little bit about the workflow.

A bit of post-processing was involved here, but in this instance, it involved some “dial restraint” There are lots of sexy things you can do to a picture in Photoshop, but I decided to avoid most of those today, and in fact, went the other direction.

I wanted a baby blue sky with pastel shades that look like they could float out of the picture. In order to do that,  I had to reduce blue and cyan saturation. So I desaturated, maybe about 15%.  I then applied a slight increase of yellow and red saturation in the highlights which sweetened up the clouds just a touch. To me, this is something like applying a tiny bit of blush. Another color adjustment involved going into selective color and tweaking blue and cyan ever-so-lightly so that those colors would be a little bit less magenta. I’m not that crazy about blue skies with a magenta bias.

There were a couple more things to do. I could’ve created a stormier sky here, especially if I leaned into the left slider on the levels. A similar thing could’ve been achieved had I selected a polarizing or a graduated ND filter.  I took a look at those options but decided to do nothing. The sky had a native gradation which I liked, and so, except for a wee bit of lightening, I left the levels alone.  On plenty of other occasions,  I’ll want to take advantage of curves, levels and filters because I’m aiming for a different sort of look.

As a final act of non-action, I sharpened nothing here today because my 14mm Panasonic lens delivered a group of clouds that were agreeably diffuse. Photoshop can be like a candy store, but of course it’s not good to eat too much.

More cloudy pictures forecasted.

9 thoughts on “Sound Clouds

  1. How interesting. I use Gimp, like Photoshop so they say (I haven’t ever used Photoshop), but I can only apply/subtract colors to the whole thing I think, or I worked out how to do one selective thing once but now I’ve forgotten and I wrote down how to do it in notes that I can’t locate at the moment…. I’m not very good with that kind of thing. I like your blush/make-up analogy, so true, in my limited experience anyway with photo editing, and slightly more with make-up 🙂 [less is more], as well as the candy….


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