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Blending Flash Layers with Ambient

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  • Blending Flash Layers with Ambient

    Does anyone do this on here? I shoot real estate, and am looking for workflow on using light blending vs HDR.

  • #2
    I've never done it myself but I believe the basic premise is that you would setup the camera on a tripod and then go around room taking a photo with a strobe to properly light each section. You would then import each of the individual photos and add them as layers in a pixel-based editor. You would then go layer by layer, adding a mask to each so that only the properly exposed portion showed. At the end you will have created single image composed of all the underlying images. While it's possible to do this in PSU18, I think it would be more difficult than Photoshop or Affinity because of the lack of a pen tool to make selections. I also find that making selections and brushing in PSU is laggy, but that may just be my PC (though I don't have those issues in Affinity).

    As whether to use multiple images with masking or HDR it really depends on what you're trying to accomplish. By using masking you have more control over luminosity in different areas of the photo, however as you can see in that video it's a LOT of work when you get into 5, 10, 15+ layers. With HDR you're relying on an algorithm and lose some control but it'll be much quicker.


    • #3
      I shoot real estate also. Low end. Nothing fancy. But "light blending" is essential for good interior results. I have developed a work flow that works well for me. No flash. Ambient light only. Lots of interior shadows and bright windows to cope with. Each shot is bracketed at one stop intervals and I take anywhere from 5 to 9 intervals. Fast, continuous, automatic, shots. It actually goes quickly. And then I batch fuse (light blend) using PHOTOMATIX software. The fused results usually require some tweaking to achieve color accuracy and uniformity. That's where ACDSee Ultimate comes in. Photomatix and ACDSee are a great combination.


      • #4
        I have the photography down and get the flash concepts. I am skilled at bracketing and merging via enfuse. I am trying to figure out how to do the blending of multiple layers in acdsee to expose lighting. Sorry..should have been more specific. I may do some trial and error. I like this system as it allows some stylized lighting. I'm going to practice on a local luxury hotel. I am not do I make sure my photos are aligned in acdsee alsi...


        • #5
          Unfortunately ACDSee doesn't have a stacking/auto-align feature, hopefully they'll add this to the their development list because it's an extremely useful feature. If you have Affinity Photo, you can use the "Stack" (File > New Stack) which will create a live stack group. You can then select the stacking mode (e.g. mean, median, etc.) as well go into individual layers of the stack. Generally I would suggest playing around with the stacking modes to find the best exposure and then flatten to create a new merged pixel layer to further manipulate.