Elevate Your Low-Light Photography with This Easy Editing Hack (VIDEO)

Whether you’re photographing landscapes, street scenes or seascapes, shooting at night is one way to create eye-catching images with sparkling lights, interesting skies, and dramatic light trails of moving subjects. In the tutorial below you’ll learn a quick-and-simple editing hack that makes nighttime images even more compelling.

Based in Mumbai, photographer Saurav Sinha is a popular instructor and self-proclaimed “camera geek” with a large following on YouTube. In this four-minute episode he demonstrates how he added the WOW! factor to an image with a few quick clicks in Photoshop.

Sinha was recently in Toronto shooting a time-lapse from the shore when a large boat cruised by. As you’ll see, he created a beautiful image by combining two images from the sequence, taking advantage of captivating light trails emanating from the slow-moving ship.

The images for Sinha’s composite were chosen with care as the boat move through the frame; one with light trails on the right as the ship entered the scene, and another with light trails on the left as it passed through the frame.

Sinha’s simple and effective technique involves merging these two images after making a few simple color and exposure adjustments to the Raw files. He syncs these edits across both images, explaining that this crucial step is necessary for the adjustments to appear identical.

Next you’ll see how he creates two layers—one for the “base layer” and another with his second image. The then demonstrates the process for merging the layers, and describes the necessary settings and Blending Mode options to use for achieving a perfect result.  After some very minor final retouching, Sinha says, “we’re good to go.”

You’ll find more simple editing tips like this on Sinha’s YouTube channel, so pay a visit after watching the video.

And for another basic editing technique that delivers big results, check out our recent tutorial explaining how to use Photoshop’s Blend If feature for better landscape photos.