My Photography: Malioboro Street

My Photography: Malioboro Street

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Another day, another shot. For this one, we gonna take a deep look at one of my latest pictures of Malioboro Street, one of the most famous destinations in Yogyakarta. This is My Photography: Malioboro Street.

My Photography: Malioboro Street

If you come to the City of Yogyakarta one of the places you must go to is Malioboro Street, one street line of Market but a lot to see.

When you begin to enter Malioboro Street, there will be a street sign that said “Jl Malioboro.” This sign is really famous because a lot of taking a selfie there, hundreds a day I think (no idea why). So as a cityscape photographer this is one of the places that I really want to photograph. But like I said there’s a lot of people there. So how to handle that? Here is what I did.


If you ever saw my previous post, you probably know this. I just bring my usual gear. Sony a58 with Tamron DC 18-200 f/3.5-6.3 Macro, Sirui T-2204X tripod, and NiSi Nano IR ND32000 Filter.

So in order to solve the problem of people taking selfies, there is to come at the right time, which is morning, at 5.30 AM to be precise.


Now taking the photograph, portrait, and right in front of the sign. Another way to solve the people problem is to do long exposure photography, that’s where the ND filter comes in. From 1/80 sec to 11-minute shutter speed. So here’s what I got:

Raw shot. 704 sec at f/11 ISO100

As you can see there is still some motion blur of people and cars. So we gonna solve it in post-processing.


Unlike my previous post, I usually just showed the edited shot right away. Now I’m gonna show you more detail of my post-processing workflow on how I exactly do it.

First I import my raw shot to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC to do some basic adjustments. First, go right away to Lens Correction to Enable Profile Correction and Remove Chromatic Aberration and make the picture straight. Then I did my basic adjustment convert to Black & White, Highlight at the lowest, Shadow at the highest, increase the White, and decrease the Black. So here’s what happened when it did:

Lightroom Basic Adjustment

Not yet, I continue my editing in Adobe Photoshop CC. The first thing that I do is create a selection of my main subject, the sign, and the lamp, using a pen tool. Take some time and it’s over. I did that so I can separate my foreground (lamp and sign) and background (all others) editing more easily.

Then I start my background editing. To do that, I start by creating Luminosity Mask. Not really that easy to make, but there’s an easy way to make it using the action panel by Jimmy McIntyre (it’s free).

Then I create a deep dark mood using Google Nix Silver Efex Pro 2 to create a close to black contrast background. For the sky, I did the same thing. But darker and some selection adjustment. Thanks to the luminosity mask I created, I did the sky adjustment more easily.


Not yet. Maybe I did the overall editing well. The problem now is the main subject, the sign, and the lamp are too dark. But thanks to my previous selection I did use the pen tool, I can create separate adjustments. So for this one, I’m using Silver Efex Pro 2 again, specifically to the lamp and the sign, contrast but not really that dark. Here is the editing result:


Now for the finishing, I want to do dodge & burn on some of the parts of the picture. In my experience, it’s more easily to be done in Lightroom. And so that’s what I exactly did, I bring it back to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC. to do my final adjustment a little dodge & burn using an adjustment brush and radial filter. Then add some vignetting. And here is the final result:





3 thoughts on “My Photography: Malioboro Street

  1. Thank you for sharing your editing process. I love the look and feel of black and white photos but haven’t quite grasped the editing. I work mostly with Lightroom but challenging myself to use Photoshop more often. Beautiful photo!

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