Tag: replacing the sky


Adding Mood to an Image

When you look on the internet you see images everywhere. There are millions and millions of them. They are all great and that then creates the problem of how to make yours stand out. I don’t know the answer to that, or what you can do about it, but what I love to do is try adding mood to my images.


This is an old Church in the small country town of Woomelang. I go up there a lot and I first started taking photos of this Church about 20 years ago, and the last time I did was back in August. When I was there last, a few weeks ago, this Church was gone. The building had been sold and it was taken apart to be shipped somewhere else. Now there is one less thing to take photos of up there.

This photo was actually taken early in 2014. I wanted to do something more with one image to show it in a new light and as a thank you to it for being a fantastic subject all these years. It is my farewell to the building.

The original image had a horrible sky. It was taken very early in the morning and to say it was boring is an understatement. The first thing I had to do was replace it. I found a sky that I had taken up there once before. It was also done in early morning, so perfect really.

Cloudy skies are great for adding mood to an image. It is so important, I think, for fine art photographers to collect certain things, and one of those is skies. I have collected around 300 different ones so far, and I continue to collect them.

This image would not have had the same impact if the sky was boring. We know that clouds give us a feeling of morose or something like that. There is something about cloudy days that effects us all. When you see images with that cloudy sky then those feelings come to you. I like the way it helps to demand a response from the viewer.

Just because you take an image under certain circumstances, doesn’t mean you have to settle for it.  You can change whatever you like in the image to get what you want. Of course you have to know how, and if you don’t there is nothing to stop you from learning.

Think about what you wish you could do with your images.


Last week I had an opportunity to go out my friend Christine Wilson to take some photos north of Melbourne.  It was going to be a great trip and we were going to see some amazing things, and, of course, take photos.  Well we did see some amazing things, but the sky, well the sky was just horrible.  It was a white sky and really wasn’t good for photography. So what do you do “When the Sky Gives you Blah”.

We headed out past Romsey and Lancefield, making note that we will have to go back there.  then we headed to Emu Flat, a place that seems to be only an old church and an abandoned school.  We could walk around the church, but we had to content ourselves with photographing the school from the other side of the fence. There were two sides, but also trees to contend with.  It wasn’t ideal, but with signs everywhere saying trespassers will be prosecuted, well I didn’t want to take the risk and neither did Christine.


So this is basically the raw image I got.  You can see I was quite a distance, couldn’t get any closer on this side.  You can also see the sky and how terrible it was.  It was so disappointing.

I have all these photos of this place and if I want to process them I am going to have to replace the sky in nearly all of them.  So that is what I did for this one, following a new tutorial I found.


I put a much cloudier sky in the image.  I have done quite a few other things to this as well, besides just the sky.  I did convert it to black and white, and then I converted it back to colour after I had changed things.  I sort of like the saturated feel to it.  I think the sky replacement was a good idea, and though harder because of all the trees, was worth the extra effort.

I am going to post the black and white version on my other blog, and you will be able to see it on my Quiet Thursdays post, I will add the link as soon as I post it.

Just need to remind people that you can comment on this post, and while it doesn’t look like anything happens when you do, it does.  I get all the comments, though it can take me some time to approve and respond to them yet.  I don’t know why this blog is so weird to leave comments on.  I will have to get onto the developers and see what they can work out.

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Last week I did a before and after of the following image, and Stacy from VISUAL VENTURING wanted to know how I replaced the sky in the image. old-buildings-skyscrapers-closingin-melbourne I thought if she wanted to know then perhaps others did too, so using my new Camstasia Studio software I did a video of it for her and others.  So Stacy, I hope this helps you to work out what I did.  Of course if anyone has any questions, please ask, and if I can answer them I will.

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