Does your landscape need a sunset? Would your cityscape look better with a dramatic sky? Normally, you’d have to resort to Photoshop or another image-editor which supports image layers and masks and then add one in manually, but the new AI Sky Replacement tool in Luminar 4 will do it all for you (don’t worry, it’s not compulsory).
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It’s not due until Autumn 2019, but Skylum is already teasing the next version of Luminar. It’s not giving much away about the new features, but it does say artificial intelligence and machine learning will drive the new version, and that the new AI Sky Replacement tool is just one of the new features. Here’s a selection of different ‘skies’ applied to the same shot of the New York skyline.
Luminar 4 AI Sky Replacement
It will join the existing Accent AI 2.0 and AI Sky Enhancer filters, which both use machine learning to automatically identify and enhance different areas of your pictures. The AI Sky Replacement tool goes much further, though. It doesn’t just enhance the image information that’s there, it adds in whole new ‘sky’ content from Skylum.
This is likely to spark some debate about ‘reality’ and photography, but it would probably be hypocritical to argue too much since digital photographers have been stripping in new skies for years. What Luminar 4 promises to do is make it an automatic process that requires very little time, skill or effort.
It works by automatically detecting not just the sky but all the objects in a scene. It will then adapt the lighting and coloration of the scene via its ’scene relight technology’ to match the sky you’ve chosen to add in. Skylum says the AI Sky Replacement tool can also remove halos, artefacts and ugly transitions along object edges – problems with frequently make sky replacement difficult and unconvincing using normal manual techniques.
Luminar is not set to arrive until Autumn 2019, but it is possible to pre-order Luminar 4 right now – though Skylum says pricing and upgrade pricing has yet to be announced.
It’s not clear yet whether the AI Sky Replacement tool will also appear in Luminar Flex, the standalone/plug-in version of Luminar that’s now been sold and developed separately.