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How to Edit Your 4th of July Fireworks Pictures

Whether you’re celebrating the 4th of July or on a summer trip to a theme park, fireworks sure to light up the night sky.

You’ll want to snap photos, but if you’re not careful they may not turn out quite as vibrant as you remembered.
 
In this tutorial I'm going to light up some firework photos with depth and color by blending multiple layers.  Your family and friends will be blown away.
 
Now, if you've used layers in PaintShop pro, you will already be familiar with how to add and manipulate images in the layers palette. If not, click here to view the tutorial on Working with Layers.
 
Just a quick refresher: if you do not see this palette, launch it by clicking the F8 key on your keyboard.

Once you see this layers pallet, we're ready to add a whole new color dimension to our fireworks photos. 
 
Firework photos are dramatic, but if you've shot fireworks from the ground you simply don't have the time to do anything fancy. Usually, I would use the HDR feature on my camera if I wanted to make my photos pop. But fireworks change in a fraction of a second and that's not enough time for this feature to work. 
 
So what I'm going to do instead of creating an HDR image by combining the best attributes of multiple exposures, is use one photo with added layers.

Each layer will add depth and color, and then we'll merge them into one spectacular result.  
 
So let's get started. We want to make our fireworks pop!
 
The first thing you're going to need is the original image you took at the fireworks display.  


Next, I'm going to do is go to my layers pallet here, right click on the background and select Duplicate.  Alternatively, you can select Duplicate from the Layers menu. Re-name this layer to "Multiply" and I'll set the blend mode for this layer to, you guessed it,  Multiply.

This isn’t necessary but it does help keep things organized.
 
Next, duplicate the background again, drag it to the top and I’ll call this one "Vibrant Blur".
 
The “Vibrant” name explains it for this layer.  You'll want to really increase the photo’s color vibrancy. Go to the Adjust menu and use Hue/Saturation/Lightness or Vibrancy from the Hue and Saturation menu. You don’t need to be shy, I’m using both to give this a real burst of color.  


Now go to AdjustBlur and Gaussian Blur
 
The amount of blur needed is really going to depend on the size of the photo so there is no real right or wrong number here so just drag the slider until your image looks like this. 
 
So we have two layers, why not three! I'll duplicate one more copy of the background, name this one Soft Light and drag it to the very top of the Layers palette.

I’m going to soften the differences between the three layers with the blend mode Soft Light to really show off that amazing contrast of light against the black background.
 
If you find that the image is a little too blurry you can always lower the opacity of that layer by dragging the Opacity slider over to the left.  
 
When you have the image the way you would like it you can right click on any one of these layers and select Merge All Flatten and then save the image in JPEG format.  
 
It's just that easy to make your fireworks photos pop!


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