Dramatic Changes: Before and After Train Station Photography With Photoshop

Photoshop allows me to digitally paint my images look like you’re viewing them through a pair of polarized sunglasses: certainly my favorite way to view the day.

Taken on a cold and rainy March afternoon, this is the view down the tracks of the Campbell light rail train in the San Francisco South Bay region of California.

A light rail commuter train station in the South Bay town of Campbell, California
A light rail commuter train station in the South Bay town of Campbell, California
Armed only with my point and shoot, I couldn’t possibly capture the powerful colors I saw through my polarized shades. So I took what I could get and gave it a Photoshop makeover later.
Campbell Light Rail Station - Original Image From My Point and Shoot
Campbell Light Rail Station – Original Image From My Point and Shoot
Below are the adjustment layers I used to transform a muted photo into the vibrant memory I have of these train tracks cutting through the city of Campbell, California. No HDR or tone mapping needed, though I did get a boost from a magic filter called Topaz Adjust!
I use levels and curves as my primary tools in photo editing. For this image, I also used Topaz Adjust to help the details and vibrance.
I use levels and curves as my primary tools in photo editing. For this image, I also used Topaz Adjust to help the details and vibrance.

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