Here's another galaxy I have imaged before but wasn't happy the way it looked so I knew I had to go back and get better data when the Spring starts. Well the data is definitely better but I'm not sure how I feel about the final image.
Galaxies are very different to process than Nebula, not least because of the Stars and getting their colors right. More than that I was time time trying to find the right Hue / Saturation for the Galaxy itself. If you look at all the different M81's the AstroBin presents, you'll see that some of them show very light Blue arms (which I like) and some of them are clearly balanced more towards Dark Blue & Magenta colors. I ended up using this latter palette also as most of the images I checked seemed to favor those colors.
I keep experiencing still what's the best way to add the Lum data on the RGB data. This time I used a light Gray image to mask areas where there were no visible data as I noticed that it kept the BG smoother than what normal LRGBCombination did. The only negative with this approach is that you have to be careful that you won't loose data from areas with very faint signal. And as usually I did a million variations of different BG's ending up using one from somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. I'm OK if people think the image is too light or too dark, this was the happy medium for me.
C & C's are still welcome.