Fuji X-T1 - Before and After

Adobe Lightroom Processing - Fuji X-T1 RAW

I recently posted an article on my trip to Iceland with the Fuji X-T1. I've had a few folks asking about my post processing so I thought I'd share some of the adjustments that I made.

Fuji X-T1 - Hofn, Iceland

The Fuji RAW file for the image above looks like this straight from Camera. 

Fuji X-T1 - Un Edited RAW

The composition isn't bad but it's a little dull. RAW files often lack contrast and this can make the image look flat. It was very early morning and the exposure looks about right for the time of day but it will improve the shot to bump it up a little.

Opening the RAW file in Adobe Lightroom I start at the top of the adjustments stack and tweak the WB to Cloudy to introduce some warmth.

Bump up exposure to lighten the shot and add impact.

The sky has nice detail so I drop the highlights slider to bring additional definition to the clouds

I introduce some contrast by dropping both shadows and Blacks sliders to bring some contrast in between the mountains and the sky.

The Vibrance slider works well to introduce a color boost. It is far more subtle the saturation slider.

The Tone curve gives some subtle control over lights and darks. The classic 'S' shaped curve brings some additional contrast

I plan to run the image through NIK Software Color Efex Pro which has it's own contrast filters so the Tone Curve is not really necessary in this case, but I kind of like the interface...

 

Fuji X-T1 - RAW image after initial adjustments

Split Toning

I read about a trick to utilise the Split Toning adjustment to boost color in a drab sky. It is easy to over-do this tool but it does make some dramatic impact on certain scenes. In the screen shot below you can see the setting for this photograph. I added red tone to the highlights and de-saturated it to ensure it didn't over-power.

The image below shows the photograph after the spit toning has been applied

I like to add a subtle vignette to Landscapes such as this to draw attention to the central subject. In this case I also added a gradient to the bottom to darken the foreground slightly. This helps keep the viewer in the frame for this scene.

Adding a gradient as the base of the photograph helps keep the viewer in the frame.

Adding a gradient as the base of the photograph helps keep the viewer in the frame.

NIK Color Efex Pro 4

NIK software has recently been purchased by Google and this excellent software is now available for free download. It is a mature product that works seamlessly as a plug-in for Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. I often use it with Photoshop as the adjustment comes in as a layer and can be masked as necessary.

I have set up some sample 'recipes' in Color Efex Pro 4 and the one used on this photograph adds a gradient to the sky, Brilliance and Warmth adjustment (which is some powerful magic source!), detail, contrast and a vignette.

Click here to download the NIK recipe

I posted the before and after photos on the Fujix forums and the resulting thread makes for an interesting read covering the debate on how much editing is too much and even whether the image is a lie.