Google recently released their NIK software suite into the public domain. I decided to play with some of the tools on my recent Mud Lake nature photos. I normally just use DFine2 to clean up sensor noise. I decided to open up the shadows and enhance shadow detail that was normally lost.
NIK Dfine2 to clean noise, then NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 to open up the shadows.
Slightly different cropping . . .
Then I opened this image:
Before: I do like the image, but let’s see what we can do.
After #1: Brightened up, this is how I imagined the scene.
The NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 can bring up lost feather details. So I tried merging the two images each in a Photoshop CS6 layer and adjusted the opacity.
The opacity was adjusted visually for the look I wanted.
Darrell A. Larose