Seeing Red

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Shifting the spectrum can transform a landscape and create dramatic artistic effects.

By Charles Platt

Back in the day when monochrome prints dominated art photography, big names such as Ansel Adams created dramatic effects by using colored filters with black-and-white film. A red filter, in particular, blocks light from the blue sky while freely transmitting the mellow colors of rocks and dry grass. This combination results in an almost black sky while the bleached foreground seems to leap out at the viewer.

Today we can achieve the same results much more easily with Photoshop. The software is expensive, but older versions still work. ...

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