Stephen Bay's Photography Blog

Blend If vs Luminosity Masks

Blend if and luminosity masks are two different methods in Photoshop for determining how a layer is combined with those beneath it. They are both similar in that they use the brightness values of the image pixels to perform a weighted average between the current and underlying layers. Blend if and luminosity masks are almost interchangeable and can often be used to obtain the same end result. For example, you could use both methods to limit a warming color adjustment to the highlights of an image.

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Some Experiments With Topaz Sharpen AI

Recently I’ve been trying programs like Topaz AI to correct some issues in photos that I that I messed up technically. Topaz and the other AI based filters (E.g. Luminar AI, Photoshop Neural filters) essentially work by artificially generating textures and image detail so in theory there’s no limit to how much they can sharpen, remove noise, or magnify the existing detail in a photo. But in practice, I find that sometimes it’s like magic and other times it produces garbage.

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