Impressive Editing Tool Using Tony Kuyper Actions
I’ve decided to start a series of posts explaining some of the techniques that I use both in the field and in the digital darkroom to help express my vision in the images I create. So to kick off the series I would like to talk a little bit about a very impressive tool that in my opinion could be useful to all digital photographers. And no, I’m not being paid to say this even though this will probably come off as a bit of a sales pitch.
The tool is actually a set of actions and techniques developed and sold by Tony Kuyper, his webpage can be found at goodlight.us. He has prices and a lot of really useful information on his site, including a number of highly detailed and informative tutorials, so I definitely recommend checking it out.
I use Tony Kuyper’s Actions in a number of different ways while editing my images and there is really an infinite number of ways that you could incorporate these into your workflow and editing process. The actions that I use the most are the Luminosity Masks, however all of the actions seem to have a place in my workflow at one time or another and I’m finding new uses for them all the time.
For now I’m just going to give a brief overview of one of the actions and how it might be used, and then in future posts I’ll dive in a little deeper and show some of the more in depth uses.
So first let’s look at the Luminosity Masks and what they are. Basically the luminosity mask is a very detailed selective mask that is automatically created using these actions. For most images I’m working with one of the first things I do is make all the masks as channels, what this does is it places a number of masks up in the Channels Pallet, allowing you to choose whichever mask best fits the situation you are dealing with.
You can see in the image above all the masks that can be instantly created with the touch of a button using Tony Kuyper’s Actions and it really is just that easy. Now I have 15 different masks at the touch of my fingertips to help with whatever editing I want to do to the image. For example, let’s say I want to selectively darken the foreground of this image a little bit, however I don’t really want to darken the foreground elements or the sky elements that are already relatively dark, I could use one of the Lights masks to selectively mask out the darker areas and then apply that mask to a curves layer to darken the lights that are showing through the mask.
Here is an example of a “lights” mask that is available immediately.
So there you have it, the power of the Luminosity Masks. There is truly an infinite amount of uses for these masks, from Curves Adjustments to Saturation Adjustments, to dodging and burning. These tools truly take the basic (yet already expansive) toolkit that Photoshop contains and gives every tool another hundred uses for creativity.
The Luminosity Masks are just one of the actions that Tony Kuyper has designed and there are a lot more to explore. Let me know if you have any questions or feel free to contact Tony through his website goodlight.us.
I’ll be putting up another post soon about one of the more intricate ways I use Luminosity Masks to help edit some of my images. So please check back!