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The world of HDR and HDR Toning is all about illumination. It's about working with your files in creative ways to come up with ways to brighten, and add contrast, and color with unique and distinct looks. Well, here with this photograph, we're going to do something in this vein, yet, we're going to do something completely different. What we're going to do here is we're going to work with a filter which is called High Pass, and also some Blending modes in order to come up with a creative way to create a unique and distinct look. So you can think of this movie as a bit of a bonus movie.
You can think of it as continuing on with what we know about High Pass in a completely different way. Well for starters, we need to copy this background layer. To do that, let's press Cmd+J or Ctrl+J. Next, let's name this new layer HP for High Pass. From here, we'll go ahead and navigate to our Filter pull-down menu and then select Other, and then High Pass. Now, with this High Pass filter, what we want to do is bring our Radius all the way down and then incrementally increase that Radius until we see things start to glow.
So we're thinking about illumination here. You'll notice as I hit this point right about here we can really see that glow start to take place. As we increase this more and more, we're going to see more, and more of a glow. Now, we don't want to go too far, but we want to find that point where we're just starting to see some nice glow. All right! Next step, click OK to apply that. Well, here we can see that we have this effect. You can also see we have some color, yet it doesn't look very interesting. Well, what we're going to do is apply a Blending mode to this and it's going to actually look worse, but stick with me. All right! Well, go ahead and choose the Luminosity Blending mode here.
Now, we can see we have this kind of muted glowy type of aesthetic. With this Luminosity Blending mode turned on, I now want to merge everything to the top. To merge these two layers to the top, we can use a shortcut; on a Mac, that shortcut is Shift+Option+ Cmd+E, on Windows, Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E. Let's name this Merged. All right! Well, we can turn off the visibility of our High Pass layer, and now we've merged these two layers to the top. Well, what we're going to do next is we're actually going to go down to choose one of our Blending modes, in particular, Soft Light.
So now when we choose this Soft Light Blending mode, what we're going to get is this really interesting aesthetic. Take a look. Here we have that before, and now the after. So not only do we have interesting color saturation, but we have a little bit of a glow. Again before and then after. Now, if you want more of that glow effect, you can just simply increase that High Pass Radius to give even higher results or you can also duplicate this layer. If we duplicate this layer and then lower the Opacity, let's lower it perhaps down to something like 30 or 40, we can see that we now have an increased effect, our before and then after, increase Color Saturation, also increased a little bit of the glow and if we zoom out perhaps a bit more, we can see that even more clearly.
Here's the before and then the after. In this case it has a little bit of that HDR toned aesthetic except we accomplished this in a completely different way. Just as a refresher, what we did was, we first duplicated our background layer, we then applied a High Pass Filter to this layer and we started off on our normal Blending mode. Next, we took that Blending mode to Luminosity. Once we're on Luminosity, we then merged to top using a shortcut: Shift+Option+Cmd+E on a Mac, Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E on Windows.
Then with that merged layer, we changed our Blending mode to Soft Light and then from there, we looked at how we could duplicate the layer to increase the effect and we experimented a little bit, and of course there are other ways to experiment as well. You could always go ahead and try your Overlay Blending mode if you wanted an even more punchy, a more illuminated type of aesthetic. Take a look at the difference. There's Overlay, and then there is Soft Light. All right! Well, as you can see we can use this particular technique to come up with some interesting and creative results.
Once again, let's take a look at this. Here is the before, and then after.
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