Processing the Milky Way

Those of you who follow my other blog have seen the photos I put up today of the milky way over Lake Lascelles in Hopetoun on Wednesday night.  For those of you who don’t follow it, here is a link, click here.

I have also done a post here on photographing the milky way, so if you want more information on that, then just go back a few posts.

Today I thought I might give you some tips on processing your images of the milky way.  Here is an image with no processing, it is straight out of the camera with no processing at all, well except to straighten it.

unprocessed-milky-way-lake-lascelles

You can see it there, but it is hard to see the milky way.  So after processing, it looks like this.

stars-milky-way-night-photography

You can see the milky way in this a whole lot more, it is better defined.  It is actually very easy to do and there are a few things to play with.  I used Photoshop Camera Raw to do these, but you can do the same things in Lightroom.

  • Put the contrast up.
  • Give the image more black.  If you don’t have that option you may be able to do it with levels.
  • Give it a touch of clarity, not too much
  • You can go to noise reduction and turn up the luminance to get rid of some of the noise.

That is about all I do, sometimes I might tone down the highlights, or up the exposure or put it down a little, but those things will give you a fairly good image.  Good luck.

I just thought I would also mention, if you are interested in learning photo editing, I do do One on One Photo Editing Sessions, both online and in person, click here for the details

Please remember, if you have enjoyed this post or learned something new, this is how I make my living, so it would be wonderful if you would consider making a small donation, let me continue to help you by helping me.

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Talk to me, it is too quiet.