Tip #1458: Quick Sky Enhancement

… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #1458: Quick Sky Enhancement

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Gradients, combined with blend modes, can quickly create amazing looks.

The gradient (top), original image (center) and composite using Overlay blend mode.

Topic $TipTopic

Here’s a fast way to improve the look of a cloud-filled sky, using a simple gradient and a blend mode in Premiere.

Take a look at the middle image in the screen shot. It is an OK shot of the sky, but doesn’t have any “pop.”

  • Create a simple gradient in Photoshop, similar to the screen shot, that roughly corresponds to the position of the sky.
  • Stack the gradient above the clip with the sky in the timeline.
  • Apply Effect Controls > Opacity > Blend mode > Overlay to the gradient clip. This darkens the sky and brightens the foreground.

As you can see in the right side of the screen shot, the sky is a LOT more dramatic!


If you don’t want the foreground brightened, either replace the white in the gradient with transparency, or use an Opacity mask to cut the gradient at the horizon line. (This was what we did here.)

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2 replies
  1. Loren
    Loren says:

    Great tip. Just wondering, is it possible to replicate this process by staying in Premiere and using the 4-color Gradient effect?

    Best, as always,


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