Another blend

Jul 3, 2010
Still trying to improve doing manual blends with layer masks. The only thing I do is take the SOOC pics and then load them in photoshop. I then blend 2 at a time together by creating 2 layers and making one a layer mask. Then I use brush and change opacity as I desire in areas.
Then I flatten and export to LR3 for PP
If anyone has any recommendation of other ways to approach this or tips that could improve my blending I would love to hear about it
I think this one is my best one so far. It is a blend of 4 exposures.

Here is the HDR I did awhile ago of the same shot. I always find this a hard shot so like to test new methods with it. I hope the blend has the same impact while gaining a more natural look. I do lose some details in the clouds etc.

9 exp HDR
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4 EXP blend
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Last edited by a moderator:
Nov 10, 2008
For sure. Make two layers, darker one on top, lighter for more shadow detail on the bottom. Make a luminosity mask on the top layer. This allows highlights to show, midtones partially blocked, and deep shadows fully blocked. The mask is fully graduated light to dark and feathered automatically.

You get a luminosity mask with 3 keys, command+ option + ~. Or maybe it is option control & ~. There is also a way to apply it from the channel pallet.

The command is the same as keyboard shortcut as bring something to top or front. Go into preferences and uncheck that keyboard shortcut if you use a Mac.

A better explanation,

Follow the one on blended exposures.

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