Vancouver skyline; After-Before

Vancouver skyline reflected in Coal Harbour in the fog; copyright jmeyersforeman
Vancouver skyline reflected in Coal Harbour in the fog; copyright jmeyersforeman 

Vancouver is on the list of favourite places to visit, it isn’t  just the great skyline and photo opportunities, but when we are in the city there is family and friends to spend time with. Even the dullest most boring places are made better with friends and family. Here is an image taken just a couple of weeks ago. Fog and mist hanging in the air, made for still water and great reflections.

I have been following Visual Venturing written by Stacey Fisher for quite sometime, she features an “After-Before Friday” blog. The posts provide an opportunity for photographers (amateur and seasoned, alike) to share their photos, and if they wish, their post-processing decisions. The photos provide the post-processing descriptions, the “how.” The goal is to enjoy a behind-the-scenes look at others’ work while picking up helpful ideas along the way that each of us can use as we work with our own photos.

This photo and blog post has been submitted to the forum, the first time I have submitted to the “after-before friday”  There are many ways to process an image, each photographer has their own ideas, the tools I use and list below work for me. I am hoping to continue to learn from the other photographer and I am excited to be on of the contributors this week!

here is the raw/unprocessed image that I started with

Vancouver Coal Harbour; copyright jmeyersforeman
Vancouver Coal Harbour; copyright jmeyersforeman  

taking the image into Nik Colour Effects 4 and some of the steps that were required to make the final image.

Screenshot 2014-09-30 09.23.06

I added a Levels & Curve layer to the lower 1/2 of the image; using control points we are able to add or subtract adjustments to specific areas of the image. I then added a Cross Processing C-41-E6-C04 layer again to the lower 2/3’s of the image. I did not want the colour process to change the colour of the sky, but to the buildings and water. I then added a Classical Soft Focus layer to the image to enhance the softness to the foggy day. If you look closely to the last image I added a control point to the tall building to bring back some of the detail.  Bringing the image back into Lightroom I increased the exposure slightly to brighten the sky.

There are times when I know very specifically the image I want to create when I click the shutter, other times I appreciate the post processing tools that I have at my disposal, and use them to “find” the image that works. In this case I knew the image I wanted to create, knowing and working with the post processing tools allowed me to create the final image in a relatively short period of time.

I hope you will hop over to Visual Venturing and check out the other photographers work.


20 thoughts on “Vancouver skyline; After-Before

  1. This is quite interesting, especially since I have no experience with Nik Colour Effects and now I have a little better idea of it can do. I like the results very much; the added softness really brings out the feeling of the fog.


    1. Hi Robyn, I am happy to hear you found the post interesting. Nik Software has so many possibilities. the website has great tutorials to learn from, and they may even have a free trial period for trying it out! I am glad you like the softness, my inspiration was a harbour painting I while travelling in Spain!


  2. Janice, such a lovely photo of the harbor! I was so excited to read about your process using Nik Efex. I have used a few of the programs, but haven’t had the time to learn how to use the control points and didn’t know I could use layers in the manner you used them. So thank you for getting me inspired.

    I’m delighted you took part in ABFriday this week and am looking forward to seeing more of your wonderful work there as your time permits!


  3. The cross processing is a great addition adding depth to the clouds and giving the image a feeling of being a memory more than what the landscape looks. This makes me want to know so much more about the place. I really like Nik’s plugins and they are so versatile. Look forward to seeing more contributions from you in the future.


    1. Hi Ben, thanks for taking time to comment, and your encouragement, I have learned so much from your blog posts and contributions to Stacy’s after-before posts! I am glad to hear you like the final results.


  4. Your choices really make the buildings pop from their foggy background. Though I have no experience with Nik, it was interesting to hear what you were able to accomplish. I’m using Lightroom, mostly, with a little bit of Perfect Effects 8 so I am hesitant to sign on to anything else. But I sure hear good things about Nik Effects.


    1. Hi Emillio, it is nice to hear form you. I think there are so many great things to learn and use in Lightroom, I am not familiar with Perfect Effects 8, and there are so many plugs to purchase it can make us crazy if we purchase too many! Best to know the tool you have and if you are getting the results you want, great!
      I am happy to hear you like my choices for this image!


  5. Thanks Janice your ‘after’ Vancouver picture is a treat and brought back many memories of my time living there. Appreciate your post on AB Friday, which is always a good tool for me to learn more post production methods other photographers use. 🙂


    1. HI Kazg, it is nice to hear that you enjoyed the post and that it brought back memories of you time in Vancouver, it is one of my favourite cities, it is also nice to hear you like the AB Friday, I have learned and continue to learn from the other photographers as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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