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Unless you’re shooting in a studio, natural lighting on location is often hit and miss. Sometimes you get the most beautiful light on the subject where the background is also beautifully lit; at other times it is a nightmare just to capture everything in one image.

Then there are the classic “difficult” situations: Shooting against a bright, daytime sky, with a foreground or subject that’s either in the shadow, or that just can’t compete with the brightness of the sky.

In the past (read: the good ‘ol film days) the only tools we had to handle such situations were filters. The two classic ones were the graduated filter (whatever flavour that may be), and the polarising filter. This helped us to manage both differences in brightness in the scene, and also contrast.

But most of us don’t carry filters around all the time, so we just have to make the best of the situation. Fortunately, digital photography now lets us do adjustments after shooting way more easily than before.

In effect we have the digital equivalents of filters now, and they work fabulously.

Here we’re going to look at using overlays in Affinity Photo, looking at them in a more traditional way, as graduated filters that let us correct for imbalances in the image.

In particular we’ll be look at exposure imbalances (the classic sky/foreground issue), and also using it somewhat creatively to adjust white balance as well.

Check out the video and see if it can help you improve some of your images.

And don’t forget the comment box is always open if you have any questions or suggestions — you’ll definitely get a reply!

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Want to learn how to use Affinity Photo better?

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