Enhance a scenery picture using Virtual Photographer in Photoshop


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This post has 4 comments

Today I’m going to post some­thing dif­fer­ent, a tuto­r­ial of pic­ture enhance­ment using Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher in Pho­to­shop. This is the first time I’m writ­ing a tuto­r­ial, hope you will like it.

After see­ing Ah Max post­ing those beau­ti­ful pic­tures of Gaborone Dam, I feel like mak­ing them even more beau­ti­ful. And now I want to share with you how to enhance a scenery pic­ture using some sim­ple tech­niques in Photoshop.

I’ll be using this pic­ture taken by Ah Max at the Gaborone Dam in Botswana as an exam­ple. Thanks to Ah Max allow­ing me to use this pic­ture for the tuto­r­ial. You are the man.

This is a very nice pic­ture and it looks pro­fes­sional, but with a few sim­ple steps we can make it even nicer and it will look like as if it was taken using a film camera.

First of all, what we need is, of course, Pho­to­shop. Besides that, I’ll be using a plu­gin call Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher where you can down­load it from their web­site for free. It’s my favourite plugin.

Okay, lets get started.

Step 1 – Make selection

Make an oval mar­quee selec­tion at the cen­ter of the image. Then go to Select – Inverse (Shift+Ctrl+I) to inverse the selection.

Step 2 – Cre­ate black vignette

Cre­ate a new layer (Ctrl+Shift+N). Fill the selec­tion with black colour using the Paint Bucket Tool. Press D to reset the color picker, then using the paint bucket tool to fill the area with black or press Alt+Backspace to fill the selec­tion with fore­ground colour.

Remem­ber to des­e­lect the area (Ctrl+D).

This will cre­ate a black vignette around the pic­ture. I find it pretty nice to add black vignette on scenery pic­tures as it will make the pic­ture looks more dra­matic and draws the viewer’s atten­tion to the center.

Step 3 – Soften the vignette

Blur the vignette using the Gauss­ian Blur fil­ter. Go to Fil­ter – Blur – Gauss­ian Blur and set the radius to 100 pixels.

Step 4 – Set the blend­ing mode

Now, make the vignette less obvi­ous. In the Layer Palette, set the blend­ing mode of the vignette layer from Nor­mal to Over­lay. Then lower down the opac­ity of the layer to 40%.

This will make a nice vignette effect which dark­ens the cor­ners of the picture.

Step 5 – Process colour using Vir­tual Photographer

Here comes the inter­est­ing part. Make sure you have Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher installed.

Select the back­ground layer. Then go to Fil­ter – OptikVerve Labs – Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher. The Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher win­dows will pop up.

Select Land­scape from the Pre­sets drop down menu as shown in step 5.1.

Then, drag the slider of the Film Speed to the left most (-10) as shown in step 5.2. This will pre­vent the plu­gin from adding too much noise to the picture.

Click Process.

You may want to play around with dif­fer­ent pre­sets to find the effect you like. You can even make it a black and white picture.


Take a look at the orig­i­nal one.

And the enhanced ver­sion. Click on the image below to view the orig­i­nal size (1024 x 768).

With the help of Vir­tual Pho­tog­ra­pher, the pic­ture now looks more vibrant, more con­trast and more gor­geous with­out much of hard work.

That is it! My first ever tuto­r­ial. Feel free to leave your com­ments and I hope you enjoyed it.


This post is about Design

This post has 4 comments


CommentNo. 1

max7 July 20083:31 AM

Didn’t know pho­to­shop can do that :)
Thanks for shar­ing this trick

CommentNo. 2

Kevin7 July 20082:26 PM

I would write one also…haha..but dunno what to write.. maybe how to open pho­to­shop file?

CommentNo. 3

Dan10 July 20081:20 AM

can i send all my pic­tures, u edit for me 😛

CommentNo. 4

whenlysheeplE4 August 200812:04 AM

It’s amaz­ing

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