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ben egbert wrote:
Three image blend with Gaussian blur
Start with the middle image and place the dark image on top. Add a mask to the dark image layer.
On the background, ctrl A, crtl C.
Alt click the layer mask and then ctrl V. The layer turns grey.
Apply a Gaussian blur at radius 250 to the dark layer, the image turns fuzzy.
Click on the background and you will see a blended image that is mid way between the middle and dark image but with details from the middle image.
Copy and paste your lightest image into this. It should go right above the background and below the dark layer. It will automatically brighten up the entire image.
If you want, add a mask to the bright layer and use a gradient filter to reduce lightness in the sky. You can even use a brush to fine tune the transition.
The sky details will be from the middle image, the foreground from the bright image. This avoids motion issues.
The method also avoids halos.
It does not always work, but is a nice clean method when it does.
thanks for including this, Ben