Check out how this image was transformed:

Now, if you like it, below are the instructions, step by step, as written by Ariil Davidov.

1. Open the photo in Adobe Photoshop
2. Duplicate the original layer and name it “Eyes” (well, it’s purely for convenience :)
3. Change the blend mode (blend mode) the new layer to Screen


4. Add a mask to a new layer (layer mask) and fill it with black.
5. Now select white (can also be any grayscale, if you want to achieve transparency) and begin to paint until his eyes until they brighten. Use different sizes of brushes to achieve the desired effect. You can also change the opacity of the brush or layer to make the eyes light, or vice versa darker.

6. Press CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + E to merge both layers into a new one.

7. Add Channel Mixer, to translate the image in Black&White. For each individual picture settings can be different, so no need to copy the values ??from my version :)
8. Select channel mixer and set the blending mode to multiply.
9. Now select our merged layer and apply Image -> Adjustments -> Shadow / Highlight in order to align the shadows and highlights.

10. Again press CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + E to merge the layers.
11. Next, chose ‘Clone Stamp’ toolbar and blacked extra glare on the face of the guy. For your photo and it may not be necessary, so this step is only

12. Select the Dodge Tool, set the Range – Highlights and Exposure – 50%. Start iris draw in his eyes to make eyes more expressive. The main thing is not to overdo it because it can get a full plate)


13. Combine all layers again(CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + E)
14. On a new layer apply Filter -> Other -> Hig Pass. I put a value of about 80%, but for images with different resolution, the values ??may be different. So again we choose to face.


15. Change the Blend Mode of the new layer to Soft Light. The picture is sharper, with deep shadows.
16. Finally, combine the layers (CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + E) and a little Sharpe image. Can do it any way you like what: Sharpen, Unsharp Mask, Smart Mask, etc. I personally like to make a duplicate layer, set the mode to Soft Light and High Pass filter to apply to the minimum values.
17. If you wish you can also play with Hue/Saturation or Color Balance to adjust the colors. I have slightly desaturated the image (CTRL+U).



And that’s how you obtain a masterpiece! Isn’t it eye-catching?
Thank you Ariil for sharing this.

My dear reader, I believe this article has surpassed my record in terms of how many examples I have for you. More than plenty. I should actually count them… there are about 90 images! Enjoy them and, most of all, learn from them!

Night photography in the city is not as difficult as it might seem. In fact, there are a few myths I want to destroy right here, right now.
But first, you need to know one thing will be forever true: you DO need a tripod for night photography. Even if the exposure time is not as long as you thought, it’s still longer than the by day and it does cause camera shake.

Destruction of Myth Nr.#1:

City by Night kind of photography DOES NOT require a long exposure time!
The truth about night photography in the city is this: the longer the exposure, the more overexposed the light areas will be, and there is nothing good to gain in the dark areas. You just don’t need an exposure time longer than the one you use for fireworks.

wallpaper-1215842 wallpaper-1441334

Destruction of Myth Nr.#1:

City by Night kind of photography DOES NOT require a high ISO value!
Most beginners use high ISO for night photography because it reduces the exposure time so they think they can avoid camera shake. But then they get extremely grainy images, where the grain almost gets mistaken by a light.
Here is an example for you: left side picture is with high ISO and right side picture is with lower ISO:

xplace15_1024 wallpaper-1566446

The secret here is to combine the rules of night photography: (1) use a tripod, (2) use a delayed shoot (to avoid moving the tripod while triggering the camera), plus (3) the correct exposure time and (4) aperture settings.
The first two things are easy. What you might wonder is how to get the third and forth done. This brings us to the second part of the article.

Now, how about some tips?

Tip #1:

Don’t wait until it is too dark to take your cityscape night shot.
Seriously, the best night photography is done after sunset but before full night. You need a little bit of dusk light in order to have some details in the dark areas, and, to force your camera to take the picture with less exposure time. Plus, you will get the advantage of having more colors in your shots, including a beautiful sky.

wallpaper-752658 wallpaper-783353 St. Louis at Sunset wallpaper-1019635 wallpaper-1051245  wallpaper-1078758wallpaper-246174 wallpaper-471091

Tip #2:

The correct aperture for night cityscape photography.
The thing is the following: the smaller the aperture, the more time your camera will need in order to get your picture done. I want you to forget for a moment about the exposure time, and if possible, set your camera in aperture priority mode. Test it out on a few shots until you get this effect: the small aperture will produce star-like lights. The smaller the aperture, the more rays will these star lights have. Now that you have this set up, and you have am acceptable low level ISO, you can move forward to the exposure time. If you are in aperture priority mode, there is nothing more for you to do, but if you are in manual mode, read the next tip.

Example wrong aperture:


Example good aperture:

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Tip #3:

The correct exposure time for night cityscape photography.
To get the right exposure time when you are on ground level, think about this: you do not need the passing by people to look like ghosts. Yes, they would appear in motion in your picture, but not as an almost transparent figure. Make a few test shots keeping this in mind, and then come back to your desired composition and see if you need to adjust – a little extra more exposure – before getting it perfect. Anyway, this tip only works if the city is not too dark – meaning it’s not very long after sunset and there are plenty lights in the city.



wallpaper-1451112 wallpaper-1575110 wallpaper-1613498wallpaper-82669


wallpaper-46850 wallpaper-341082  wallpaper-1471260 wallpaper-1612821

Perfectly Exposed:
wallpaper-924485wallpaper-1432835wallpaper-1070650 wallpaper-1125311

Tip #4:

Play with the white balance function.
Most images of the city by night, if the white balance is ignored, will have mostly yellow lights. However, if you change the white balance to any other temperature or setting (it’s completely up to you), you get interesting coloring in the entire composition. There isn’t much to say about this. It’s an experimental thing. But don’t forget about it. Don’t pack your gear to leave before trying this. See for yourself what others have managed:
wallpaper-7603  wallpaper-918265  wallpaper-1105102 wallpaper-1130642 wallpaper-1302280wallpaper-1098169

Tip #5:

Good night photography in the city is, in about 80% of the times, from a high point of view.
This means you need o plan your photography session ahead by finding a spot somewhere high above the city, maybe even a little further away from the city itself.
If you doubt my point, compare below shots. Compare the left pictures done at ground level with the right side pictures done from a high spot in the city.




Examples from the distance:


Tip #6:

Create a HDR image of the city by night.
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to get the perfect exposure. This happens because some areas are too dark and some are too bright: there is a much too powerful contrast in your composition. But, there’s a solution for that too: create a HDR picture. In fact, I love this tip because it produces THE BEST cityscape night photography.

  wallpaper-1572816wallpaper-1119605wallpaper-1594690 wallpaper-331105

Tip #7:

Focus on a subject to create a composition.
It’s nice to get a panoramic view of the city, but you don’t want it to be plain, right? All you have to do in order to create a composition that catches the eye is to figure out a point of view (extra tip: point of view mustn’t be necessarily with the horizon line at the eye level -> point the camera down or even up) from which you can focus on a certain element. By element I mean the following: a tower – a tall building, a bridge, an intersection, an u-turn, etc. And don’t forget to try a fish-eye perspective – it is well suitable for this kind of photography.


You might have noticed that I did not gave any exact numbers (for ISO, aperture and exposure time) in this article. It’s not because I can’t, but because there aren’t any clear rules that I can point and say: use that value! The lights of the city and the darkness of the night will always determine you to change the settings. I recommend that you experiment a lot. Set your camera on the tripod and take plenty of shots of the same scene using different values. There’s no pain in that. Night photography does require a little patience.

Out of the many things you can do as a photographer, you can choose to become a wedding photographer and have the advantage of only working a few months per year. The rest of months, you can do whatever you like or simply go with stock photography as a side-business.

So, if you are serious about this photography career, then I have found the right teaching material for you. Nick Stubbs is a professional wedding photographer since around 1980. But apart from that, he has a passion for teaching and love to see others succeed in this business and over the years.  For this purpose, he created Wedding Photography Blueprint.

I’m gona have to quote him: “It is great to watch my students go from absolute novice to running their own busy, successful photography business in just a couple of short years.”

Customers who already bought the series of 8 DVD’s of Wedding Photography Blueprint, have testified of having a build a successful business, with 12-15 weddings in the first year since taking the advises from Nick.

So here’s what Wedding Photography Blueprint is about:

DVD 1 – Classroom Sessions – Introduction, Equipment and Planning – 2 Hours
DVD 2 – Classroom Sessions – Shooting the Day, Image Review and Settings – 1h 35m
DVD 3 – Classroom Sessions – The Finer Details, Video, Lighting and Software – 1hr 50m
DVD 4 – Location Sessions – Stately Home, Bride Getting Ready – 1h 55m
DVD 5 – Location Sessions – Church, Hotel, Gardens, Beach and Grunge Location – 1h 54m
DVD 6 – Location Sessions – Reception Venue/Ballroom – 1h 55m
DVD 7 – Bonus DVD – Classroom for Business Training – 1hr 52m
DVD 8 – Bonus DVD – Interviews and eBooks

Below is a small sample I received from Nick so I can share with you and give an insight of what to expect.


Wedding Photography Blueprint also comes with a number of eBooks as a bonus. These will help you to get established as a professional photographer. Here are the titles of these eBooks:

  • The recently updated Wedding Photography Blueprint eBook
  • “How to Sell Stock Photos” – Learn to Create a Residual Income Selling Your Images
  • “The Business of Photography” – More Helpful Business Tips
  • “Introduction to Property Photography” – Add Another String to Your Business Bow
  • “Let Them Eat Cake” – A Short But Important eBook About Your Health and Well-Being

Click Here to buy this complete package if you want to be a professional wedding photographer!