Amsterdam is beautiful

This isn't exactly news to anyone, is it?  ;-)

Sunset at the Bloemenmarkt in Amsterdam

I love Amsterdam and find the city to be incredibly photogenic.  There is some fabulous architecture to photograph, deep rich history, and of course you can't ignore the canals (and can't NOT see them - they're everywhere).

I haven't been there in a while, but have been working through my old shots and processing quite a few.  I've had the good fortune to visit a few times in the last few years, and as you can imagine I have a lot of shots from those trips.  It's so fun to dive into the library, revisit shots from an old trip, and relive it in my mind.  I do that a lot.

But the other thing that had me digging into the archives was my new love of split toning in Lightroom.  You can read about that here if you would like.  It's a very powerful feature of the product and one that I find myself employing more and more, but I rarely hear much about it.  It seems to be an overlooked feature.  In fact, it's rare now that I don't try split toning on an image, even if it's just a minor tweak (as opposed to a complete color shift, which is also fun).  I don't always use split toning, but I sure test it out on a lot of images, just to see what kind of difference it makes.  And by the way, I just added a video tutorial to my YouTube channel showing how I use Lightroom's split toning.  You can find that here.

Bikes in Amsterdam

A gentleman browses books at an open-air book market in Amsterdam

So that's what I can offer for your viewing pleasure today - images from Amsterdam that have been split toned in Lightroom.  I find it's a great way to take an otherwise throwaway image and turn it into something a bit more interesting.  They aren't always winners, but it's quite rewarding to take a photo you have previously overlooked and turn it into something worth sharing.

In these images, I gave them all a greater sense of drama (and hopefully, interest) compared to the originals.  They were all taken in the late Spring under fairly sunny skies.  My intent with them was to make them appear more like they were taken in the Fall or Winter.  I think I mostly succeeded, and a lot of that was due to split toning.

But part of the key to accomplishing that was using the Indian Summer filter which is in Nik Software's Color Efex Pro.  It basically takes all the foliage and gives you the option to turn it into another color, somewhere along the orange to red spectrum.  It's a handy little filter and one that I like to test out now and then.  There's nothing wrong with green trees, but orange leaves are so much more interesting to me.  Why not make that change?  ;-)

You can see a screenshot from Color Efex Pro here.  The Indian Summer filter is super simple.  Just choose from 4 Methods (Method #1 is selected) and then drag the Enhance Foliage slider left or right to get the desire intensity.  Easy!  You can also apply it selectively in the image using the Control Points.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed this tour of Amsterdam!

Due to the lights, this photo came out of the camera very orange.  Thanks to split toning I returned it to how it looked under that blue hour sky.

I loved that church's bell tower in the distance.

Just another canal view in Amsterdam

So many amazing little scenes at every turn - Amsterdam is really a photographic paradise!