Sick of Blend If yet?  Well too bad!

Last week while we were in Yosemite we had great weather for shooting, but most mornings were cloudless.  We noticed that in the morning the skies were pure white but as the day progressed the clouds would roll in.  Our afternoon shoots were great because of the cloud presence, but our mornings were not as photographically eventful.  We did not let the lack of clouds stop us, we pressed on and shot through the morning light regardless of the lack of the white puffs!

One of the trickiest things about our mornings was the inability to predict what the clouds would do.  We woke up at 345 AM to grab a quick bite and be on the road by 445 AM.  It took about an hour to get anywhere inside the park, so we would usually arrive around 0545 – 0555 with ample time to setup and wait for the morning light to kiss the mountain tops.  The problem was not being able to see anything in the wee hours of the twilight while we drove in.  We’d sit in the car and pray for clouds to grace our images, but every morning we were displeased.

We didn’t let that stop us from shooting, in fact, we all took some amazing pictures!  The important thing is, we knew what to do with those photos with Blend if and some cloud stock we gathered from the deck of the condo we were staying in.  During one of our daily training sessions, I showed the group how to replace the boring white skies with our white puffs like pros!  By the end of the trip, everyone was a blend if expert!

Before After Blend If Sky Replacement

Knowledge is power, and documented knowledge is even better.  I decided to make this tutorial today for those who were on the trip to keep as a reference, but also for you to experience a trick that will save any boring, bland, blank sky!

In today’s Photoshop tutorial, I will discuss replacing skies with Blend If.  We will cover the following items:

  1.  Finding and matching skies with your images
  2.  How to apply the sky to your image to make it fit just right
  3.  Using Blend If to match the new sky with the dull sky
  4.  Modifying the Mask to get all the leftover junk off the rest of the photo
  5.  Adjusting the Opacity to make it blend better
  6.  Changing the new sky layer and mask to move the sky anywhere you’d like
  7.  Exchanging skies if the one you chose just isn’t right.

There’s a lot to go over, let’s get to it with Blend If once again!!!

Download the Clouds




Blake Rudis
f.64 Academy and f.64 Elite are the brainchildren of Blake Rudis. While he is a landscape photographer, he is most passionate about post-processing images in Photoshop and mentoring others.

For Blake, it's all about the art and process synergy. He dives deep into complex topics and makes them easy to understand through his outside-the-box thinking so that you can use these tricks in your workflow today!
Blake Rudis on EmailBlake Rudis on FacebookBlake Rudis on InstagramBlake Rudis on PinterestBlake Rudis on TwitterBlake Rudis on Youtube