How do I add elevation data from a DEM to an aerial photo?

09-08-2016 05:41 AM
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New Contributor III


I have a feeling this is something simple that I'm overlooking, but I'm trying to add elevation data to an aerial to give the photo relief. I know I can simulate this by overlaying the DEM over the image and adjusting the transparency, but this creates a washed out image that doesn't have the contrast I'm looking for. I've attached a jpeg of what I have so far with a transparent DEM over the aerial. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

FYI: I'm not necessarily trying to create a 3D image, I merely want to merge the shaded relief DEM with the image.

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Esri Esteemed Contributor

You could have a look at the tools mentioned in htis blog: Take your terrain mapping to new heights | ArcGIS Blog 

or the method described here: An alternative to overlaying layer tints on hillshades | ArcGIS Blog  

If they do not provide the desired result, you may want to multiply (and stretch) the separate bands with the hillshade and combine them again in a color composite.

New Contributor III


Using the Pan Sharpen tool from the Image Analysis toolbar did the trick for most part. It's not perfect but much better than what I have. Thanks for your help! I've attached the pan sharpened version.