Beautiful Sun Rays close to sunset

Hello Everyone,
I took this picture today evening with my phone (only camera I had at that moment). I tried to edit it to focus on the beautiful sun rays. However, my edit does not seem to bring out the beauty of the sun rays. They appeared more distinct and stood out. Any pointers to edit this better will be useful.
IMG_20210409_184502.dng (22.9 MB)

This is my attempt.

IMG_20210409_184502.dng.xmp (17.7 KB)

This work by Sayantan is licensed under creative commons


IMG_20210409_184502.dng.pp3 (18.3 KB)




beautiful.sun.rays.sunset.pp3 (18.8 KB) RawTherapee 5.8 Development.



Thank you @age @Jade_NL @Jade_NL. All the edits look beautiful.
@afre thank you for the trivia.

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what a beautiful scene…

a little too much color… :smiley:

Beautiful Sun Rays close to sunset_IMG_20210409_184502.dng.xmp (15.7 KB)

sometimes i wish in darktable the modules Shadow/Highlights, Tone Mapping and Dynamic Range Compression from Rawtherapie… :upside_down_face:

and a little RawTherapee…

Beautiful Sun Rays close to sunset_IMG_20210409_184502.jpg.out.pp3 (12.3 KB)

You thanked me twice, so I owe you a second edit :laughing:
Here’s a quick darktable version:

beautiful.sun.rays.sunset.dng.xmp (15.4 KB) darktable 3.5.0+1620~g47fbd509a


Thanks for posting this shot
darktable 3.4.1

IMG_20210409_184502_03.dng.xmp (20.5 KB)

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…a somewhat natural attempt…

Beautiful Sun Rays close to sunset_IMG_20210409_184502_03.dng.xmp (13.1 KB)

Nice edits @Jean-Marc_Digne, @gaaned92 @Suki2019 .
@Jean-Marc_Digne , I noticed you have used the shadows and highlights module. From what I have read over the last few days this appears to be one of the modules that is discouraged in a scene referred workflow. I also noticed that without this module the scene does appear darker.I tried to use exposure module to brighten the image but I end up clipping the highlights. Is there a way to achieve the same edit without using shadows and highlights? Alternatively when should one use shadows and highlights in a scene referred workflow?

IMG_20210409_184502.dng.xmp (20.7 KB)

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One way of solving this is to use a second exposure instance with a mask so you can selectively brighten the foreground.

I masked everything but the sky when doing my above dt version. I used a drawn mask and adjusted the exposure to get a pleasant foreground. The hardest part is creating a good balance using the masking feather, opacity and contrast sliders. You can easily end up with ugly or obvious transitions between the masked and the unmasked parts if you aren’t careful.

EDIT: I just had a look at @Thomas_Do’s edit: He doesn’t use any masks at all in his edit. Might be worth having a look at how he solved this problem.

Thank you everyone for all your help and the edits. Here is my second attempt inspired by all your edits.

IMG_20210409_184502.dng.xmp (27.1 KB)

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IMG_20210409_184502.dng.xmp (17,7 Ko)

1 Like