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How I Edited this Blue Heron Image

 I thought I’d share my edits on this image of a Blue Heron that I took this afternoon. 


Here is the original image, pretty much straight out of the camera (I shoot in RAW, so this is a jpeg version).


This was my best image from a group of about thirty shots I took of the Heron, must were just standing so not very interesting.

The fist things I do in Lightroom are to adjust for the lens and then fix any white balance and color issues. I also cropped the image a lot and added a little contrast. For this image I also lightened the birds head, neck and legs a little. My finished edits looked like this:


I liked this finished look, but wanted the background to be a little more blurry or abstract. I have been using Topaz’s Impression 2 plug-in for a while and thought I would try that. I tried several preset paint effects in Topaz and finally settled on a basic Painting effect. I then added a mask to the Heron’s head and neck to remove the painting effect. As I wanted his head and eye to stand out.

Here is the finished final image:


Let me know if you enjoyed this or if you have any questions.

Cheers,
Wade

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