Airshow on an Overcast Day

Hi All,

I was recently at a local airshow and am looking for some processing advice. The weather was cloudy and rainy, and so I am having difficultly making the aircraft pop out from the overcast sky, especially gray aircraft. Here’s an processed example with an F-18F and a F4U-4 Corsair.

My strategy so far in darktable has been to first set exposure to brighten the aircraft as much as possible and then using a second exposure model with the aircraft masked to darken the sky with a lot of feathering so I don’t get a halo around the subject. I haven’t had much luck using the tone equalizer to darken the sky because it will also affect the tones of the planes.

I’d still like to bring out the planes more from the background without losing all of the cloud details or making it look like a solid gray background. If anyone has any suggestions that’d be great. Thanks!

DSC_5011.NEF.xmp (24.1 KB)
DSC_5011.NEF (25.4 MB)
This file is licensed Creative Commons, By-Attribution, Share-Alike.

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Hello, i tried this edit, a bit lighter, but i did loose a bit of detail in the clouds as opposed to your edit, but not all details i think :stuck_out_tongue:

Darktable 3.6

  • Crop in a bit tighter
  • Use the Color Balance RGB module to add a blue tint to the shadows (aircraft) and a yellow/green tint to the sky to help separate them
  • Add Local Contrast (I’ve probably overdone it)


@paulmiller Thanks! This is the kind of approach I was looking for. Much easier than drawing masks.

DSC_5011.NEF.xmp (10.4 KB)

DSC_5011_01.NEF.xmp (10.9 KB)

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My version

Przesyłanie: DSC_5011-DARK-GIMP LAB.jpg…

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