Here’s How to Create Magical Nighttime Landscape Photos with a Simple Photoshop Trick (VIDEO)

Tom Archer is a globetrotting British landscape photographer with a portfolio full of spectacular photos. He occasionally uses Photoshop to add a bit of magic to his images, like in this tutorial with a simple technique for enhancing photos shot at night.

For images with the editing effect he describes here, Archer shoots at blue hour, somewhere between 30 minutes to an hour after sunset. He says, “At this time there’s still a lot of ambient light bouncing around, and you can expose the foreground and the landscape really well.” He then waits until it’s really dark and the stars are sparkling, and shoots a second image for blending with the first one.

Archer walks you through the process of editing the shots, and blending them in Photoshop, to create what he calls “a magical Disney-like effect.” He provides a link to his images in the description below the video, so you can try this editing method now, even if you don’t have night photos of your own.

The editing process is pretty simple, involving familiar adjustments to shadows, highlights, clarity, vibrance and the like. He also demonstrates how to add gradients, vignetting, and a few other tricks. All that’s left is a subtle color adjustment, before blending the images to create a magical final result. It’s a 15-minute trip to Disneyland, and the ticket is free!

There’s much more to learn on Archer’s YouTube channel, and in an earlier article we posted in which his reveals what he says are the three best lenses for landscape photography. And speaking of shooting at night, be sure to look at the story we posted this morning, exploring the relative merits of using high ISO settings or slow shutter speeds to arrive at an ideal image.