How to Add an Orton Glow Effect to Your Landscape Photos

The Orton Effect is a common technique used on landscape photos that can lend your images a soothing, ethereal glow that can be a great choice for projecting a certain mood. This excellent video tutorial will show you how you can use Photoshop to add the effect to your own landscape images.

Coming to you from Mark Denney, this great video tutorial will show you how to add the Orton Effect to your landscape images. The effect was developed by Michael Orton back in the 1980s as a way to emulate a watercolor painting in images. To do this, Orton would stack two transparencies of the same composition, one in focus and overexposed, and the other quite out of focus and also overexposed. This resulted in a fascinating mix of both high and low levels of detail that certainly evoked a painterly quality. Of course, this sort of effect is not always appropriate, and it can be really easy to go overboard with it, so be sure to go with a subtle touch. Check out the video above for the full rundown from Denney.

And if you really want to dive into landscape photography, check out "Photographing The World 1: Landscape Photography and Post-Processing with Elia Locardi." 

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11 Comments

dierk topp's picture

I am sure, that Ansel Adams would have used this technique instead of producing these 'cold and lifeless' look of his large format B&W images! :-))
Can you imagine, how El Capitan would look like with this technique - simply ugly!

I am sorry, but this is just poor and simple taste.

Christian Möhrle's picture

So you are the one to decide whats good and whats bad taste?

Deleted Account's picture

Check out Ansel Adams' "Sierra Meadows" photo. He was not averse to soft focus and lower contrast when it was a good artistic choice.

dierk topp's picture

thanks for the info W Mitty
I have several books from him and saw his originals, but I did not recall this one

David Pavlich's picture

Good tips!!

William Lewis's picture

What a horrifically ugly thing to do to a picture.

Fstoppers - Where you can learn what the worst possible ideas are daily.

Christian Möhrle's picture

You are one toxic person

g coll's picture

William Lewis thinks all articles should be catered to his and only his taste and approval alone. William Lewis doesn't believe that beauty can be in the eye of the beholder. William is toxic. Don't be like William.

David Pavlich's picture

You really need to get over yourself, William.

Deleted Account's picture

I always enjoy Mark Denney's videos. He explains things very well and without any ego. The use of negative de-haze and negative clarity is something that I never even considered. Thanks for getting me to think in new ways.