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11-21-2017, 12:21 PM - 1 Like   #16
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I hate to suggest it, but if you just want the photo for yourself to hang on the wall to commemorate your trip and the sky as you *wish* it would have been, instead of trying to be a "real" photographer (because come on, even "real" photographers want some nice vacation snapshots now and then) get a nice sky photo at roughly the same time of day and with the sun in the same direction as it would have been for the original and use ReMask or something to replace it cleanly:

Creative Sky Replacement with ReMask - Topaz Labs Blog

11-21-2017, 12:39 PM - 2 Likes   #17
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If you go out really early in the mornings, often there is a tinge of color to improve a slate gray sky.

11-21-2017, 01:35 PM - 1 Like   #18
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A before and after example. Shot in RAW on a cloudy dull day on the river with some PP with Lightroom at home. The settings seen at left.
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11-21-2017, 02:25 PM - 1 Like   #19
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To Kevin B123:
Is this chesil beach near Weymouth?


Last edited by elvbel; 11-21-2017 at 02:30 PM.
11-21-2017, 02:30 PM - 1 Like   #20
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These days I turn to Luminar. I would start with a "preset" then develop on top of it. Here is the result with few quick adjustments in Luminar 2018.
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11-22-2017, 04:08 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by elvbel Quote
To Kevin B123:
Is this chesil beach near Weymouth?
Yes it is, and later that day the sun came out, I wanted to stop and shoot from the top of Portland view but my kids wanted to keep going so I missed a much better picture.
11-22-2017, 07:45 AM - 2 Likes   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kevin B123 Quote
Yes it is, and later that day the sun came out, I wanted to stop and shoot from the top of Portland view but my kids wanted to keep going so I missed a much better picture.
I went there last spring, the weather was awful as you can see from the pics.
But our dog loved the trip anyway.

I used the dehaze slider and a digital grad filter in Lightroom to recover some details in the sky.
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11-22-2017, 12:27 PM - 2 Likes   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bui Quote

Now, coming back from home, the question is, what can we do to make the most of of those photos?
What would you normally do with cloudy and rainy photo (unplanned) that look so uninspiring?

Edit: okay, so I'll take one photo taken at Notre Dame, my favourite place in Paris, with a lot of cloud. I really want to learn how to improve photo like this (if there is a way).
I've taken the liberty of using your shared photo to show:
a) Your original
b) Processed with Nik Collection's Viveza2
c) Processed with Nik Collection's Silver EFX Pro2

I didn't go for subtly, just to show the dramatic extremes of how far you can go, especially if your originals were shot RAW. It's the quick and easy route. With a lot of patience and trial and error, you could use Photoshop to improve crop, curves or levels, dodge & burn, selective color, and then sharpening.

In terms of shooting, if I don't like the rain and sky, I shoot the puddles and streets. I shoot more at night where the sky is not a factor but wet pavement looks great. And like others have mentioned, high contrast sunny days are problematic for dynamic range with highlights and shadows. People look wonderful in soft overcast light. Plants or flowers will also benefit.

PS. If you don't want your Notre Dame shot posted, please let me know and I'll remove them. Personally, I think you have a good original to work with. Often we are disappointed because what we wanted to "take" wasn't there. Instead, we should embrace what we are "given".


Last edited by Alex645; 06-15-2018 at 12:20 PM.
11-22-2017, 12:28 PM - 1 Like   #24
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elvbel, Woah! what a character carrying that huge pebble. Dehaze worked well too, for some reason I'm a bit wary of dehaze so I use it sparingly. I'll visit again next year I'm sure.

Last edited by Kevin B123; 11-22-2017 at 12:29 PM. Reason: Didn't add a quote
11-22-2017, 12:34 PM - 2 Likes   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by elvbel Quote
But our dog loved the trip anyway.
Jack Terrier? Love the shot. Only a Jack would be nabbing the biggest stone but looking at the millions of others just in case there's a bigger one. PAS?
11-22-2017, 01:42 PM - 1 Like   #26
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How's this for an attempt at tweaking your photo?
I've done this in Lightroom.
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11-22-2017, 03:35 PM - 1 Like   #27
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Lots of good advice about wrangling a little more interest out of an overcast sky with PP. But also good advice about taking different kinds of photos if you've 'missed the bus' on the sunrise. IMHO an empty blue sky can also be terribly uninteresting, and not justifying taking up the top third of a picture.
11-22-2017, 03:49 PM - 1 Like   #28
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For me. B&W is usually the answer - adding a lot contrast tends to make the colours look unreal, but B&W removes the image one step from reality anyway, so you can focus on producing a good-looking image rather and forget about it looking natural - the colour sliders in LR that alter that hue even when it's in B&W help a lot in this - and you can produce very unrealistic 'colour casts' if they help the final B&W image
11-23-2017, 08:28 AM - 1 Like   #29
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Interesting question. I've tried to edit your image in Affinity Photo and in Capture one. This is the best I could do in reasonable time.

In Affinity I first used the "Lighting" live filter and then added Vibrancy, Clarity, Dehaze, colour cast and curves.

In Capture One, it was less effort. Just some curves, shadow recovery, Structure, clarity and some work in the Colour Tool.

1 Original
2 Affinity Photo
3 Capture One
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11-26-2017, 12:54 AM - 1 Like   #30
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Great edit, great advice. This is the output I have after running it through Photoshop and Lightroom (I'm an amateur of both). I overplayed with some effects, but that's not the point :-)

Conclusion: I understand I can't take any bad photo and rely on software to have a perfect one, but there is definitely room for improvement for almost any photo. If not, what's the point of post processing?

Yes, I'm sure we can find photographic opportunity at any time, any place, under any condition, providing that we're creative enough (I'm not that good though), and by no mean I said photos can only by taken at dawn and dusk ;-) at the same time, I'm sure, for any limited time trip, to visit some of the most beautiful places of your destination, you won't wish for cloudy weather, because you are not able to return to it the next days to wait for the right chance ;-)

Thank you all for your help.
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Last edited by Bui; 11-26-2017 at 12:56 AM. Reason: duplicate content
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