Have you ever taken a photo of a beautiful beach scene or landscape, only to realize that everything in the foreground is crisp at the sacrifice of the sky being overexposed? It happens all the time. Since the sky is the often the brightest part of a photo, it’s painfully common that it’ll end up getting blown out.
In situations like these, one of the best ways to correct the shot is to replace the sky completely. We know what you’re thinking though - don’t you need Photoshop skills to do something drastic like that? The good news is you don’t. All you need is the know-how in BeFunky and a Plus account to get you access to the best tools for the job.
Whether you want to get crafty with a photo manipulation or you simply want to restore the natural look of a picturesque sky, we’ll show you how to easily get the look you want in BeFunky. We’ve got tutorials for all of the above, so get ready to really up your photo editing skills. The sky’s the limit!
How To Replace A Sky That’s Rectangular
For all those times where you’ve got a crisp foreground, but the sky is overexposed, here is the solution. First, head to BeFunky’s Photo Editor and upload the image with the sky you’d like to replace. Then, click on the Image Manager and upload an image of the ideal sky. Maybe it’s a different shot of the same scene where the sky is picturesque, but the foreground is lacking. Alternatively, you could search for a free stock photo (click the Search Stock Images button) of a similar sky you want to incorporate.
Once you have your perfect sky scenario uploaded, select Add As Layer from the menu that appears when you click on the image thumbnail. Once it’s on top of your background photo, click and drag the white rectangles around the image layer to crop it into a rectangle.
Next, click and drag the blue circles around the image layer to resize and place it where the sky should go. If it’s still a little too large or small, you can click and drag the white rectangles to crop the image layer to perfection.
When your new sky is perfectly proportioned, click the Flatten Layers button in the bottom left corner of the canvas. After you’ve flattened the layers, your two layers (the new sky and the original photo) become one image. Now you’ve got the freedom to add a filter from the Effect tab to tie your edits together. One of our favorite Effects to add for sky photos are Lens Flare effects, which create the realistic look of a sun-drenched appearance.
Check out how replacing the sky and adding a Lens Flare changes the entire vibe of this photo:
This technique works great on really straightforward shots (like an ocean that is super linear), but if you have more going on in the foreground, read on to the next section.
How To Replace A Sky In A More Complex Image
If you’ve got a lot going on in the foreground of your photo, there are some additional steps you’ll need to take to make the entire image more seamless. Upload your favorite sky image into BeFunky’s Photo Editor, then click on the Image Manager tab and upload the imagery you’d like in the foreground.
Click on the image thumbnail for your foreground image (in our case, it’s a mountain) and select Add As Layer from the menu. If you want your image layer to take up the entire canvas, right click it, then choose Canvas followed by Fit To Canvas. This way, when we remove the sky from our image layer, the background image of the sky will show through with perfect proportions.
Next, click on Cutout from the Image Properties toolbar that appears whenever your image layer is selected. This will bring up a new Cutout menu with all the options you need for erasing portions of the image layer.
Choose the best brush for the cutting out the sky in your foreground image layer. In this case, we’ve gone with Magic Brush to eliminate the sky. After making sure the Remove button is selected and the sliders for Tolerance and Brush Size have been adjusted accordingly, click and drag with your mouse to outline the objects in your foreground with transparency. You’ll notice that as you remove parts of your image layer, the background photo peeks through.
Pro Tip: If you accidentally erase part of your object, click the Keep button and paint over the areas you want to keep in your cutout selection.
Once the foreground objects have been outlined, click the Paint brush and increase the brush size, then paint over the rest of the sky in the image layer. When the sky has been completely removed, click the blue checkmark to apply the cutout.
After selecting your Cutout Options from the menu that appears and clicking the blue checkmark, your image layer will appear on your background photo. You can continue using customization options for your image layer in the Image Properties menu. In this case, we’ve chosen to add a slight blue tint to the image layer so that it blends seamlessly with the sky background. When it looks perfect, click the Flatten Layers button in the bottom left corner of the canvas to combine the two layers permanently.
See how replacing the sky completely changes the vibe of this photo?
Ready to fix an overexposed sky or test out your photo manipulation skills in BeFunky? Remember that having access to a BeFunky Plus account will give you all the tools (and then some) to make it happen seamlessly. Your photo editing skills will be at a whole new level.