Monthly Archives: August 2014

Using a Curves Layer to Remove Color Casts in Photoshop

It’s bound to happen sooner or later. You’re out shooting, and when you load the pictures onto your computer afterward and take a look, you find your subject has a less-than attractive color cast. A good example of this is when you’re shooting on a bright day in the park, and you find green casts under your subject’s chin and on the sides of their face from the reflection of the light off of the grass. well, friends and neighbors, there’s a fix for that, and all it takes is a simple curves adjustment layer!

This is the image we’re going to start with. It was destined for the bin, but then I realized it would make a great example for this guide. It was taken in the shade, with a background of harsh sun and green grass. Poor little dude is a bit green around the gills, but we can take care of that.

1-original

Continue Reading…

Then again, it doesn’t matter what tools you use if you suck

When I was rooting through my archives to find the shots for the post I did last night, it got me started down good old memory lane. Or bad old memory lane. I came across a shot I took of Cami back in May 2011. I was still new to my DSLR, and the shot showed it. Bad composition, bad light, wide lens up close resulting in big nose, not to mention the ravages of adolescent skin problems. The shot should have been binned, but nooooo…

The original SOOC shot

IMG_0193-1

To add insult to injury, I had to go and actually EDIT it. NOT Pretty. Horrible color – check. Demon eyes – check. Lousy skin work – check. And the list goes on…Now it should be deleted AND burned with fire. For certain, never, ever posted. Except I AM going to post it. Sorry, Cam…

The Edit

IMG_0193-2

How embarrassing…

Anyway, I decided that with a few more years of processing experience under my belt, I’d give it one more try, from scratch. It will never be a good photo, but maybe I won’t have to be so embarrassed over it.

The 2014 Edit

IMG_0193-3

Hopefully I’ve redeemed myself at least a little, and proven that not only can I suck…hard…I can also improve…

Lightroom or Photoshop? How About BOTH?

I’ve read a couple of articles lately that discussed whether Photoshop or Lightroom is the better choice for photo editing. To me, the no-brainer answer is a definitive “BOTH”, because they both have their strengths and weaknesses, and also because they complement each other so well. And, with Adobe’s Creative Cloud program, which allows users to have both of these applications for less than ten bucks a month, it’s also become affordable for mere mortals to have both, which wasn’t always the case.

However, there are vehement adherents to the Photoshop-only philosophy. I had a discussion with one of those adherents yesterday, a person who is an ardent Photoshop user (and Lightroom hater). When I asked why, this is the answer I got:

Lightroom can’t do “real” photo editing. It’s only good for basic exposure and color correction.

Interesting position, and a fairly common one. There’s one particular “Facebook-famous” photo retoucher (who shall remain unnamed) that is so anti-Lightroom that he claims that LR is useless, makes people into shitty editors, and he often actively ridicules the Lightroom users who are unfortunate enough to stumble onto his page. It’s a shame that people are so narrow-minded, but hey, it takes all kinds right?

As for me, I use Lightroom for the majority of my work, and Photoshop for when I need the extra horsepower. The shot below illustrates a typical before and after of a shot I processed using both Lightroom and Photoshop. I did the color correction, exposure and basic skin cleanup in Lightroom, and used Photoshop to even out the skin tones as well as playing with the color and tone of certain isolated areas.

IMG_0242a

This second shot I’ve used as a demonstration of what is possible using only Lightroom. All editing on this shot was done solely within Lightroom’s develop module.

IMG_9696a

Even with my admittedly modest editing skills, it’s still clear that Lightroom is a very capable photo editor, even when going well beyond simple color and exposure correction. To be sure, Photoshop could have handled the job just as well, but at a cost of a much steeper learning curve and considerably more work, especially to make certain that all the edits have been done non-destructively. The point of this whole thing is not which is “better”, but rather that if you’re using either application to the exclusion of the other, you’re missing out on some great stuff.

Yet Another ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Cami and Keith did the ice bucket challenge this morning. Since everyone else took video, I had to take stills :-)

IMG_5725-Edit

Blog Archive

You might have noticed that there is now an Archive submenu under Blog at the top of the page. This actually links to the contents of the Techniverse Blog, which I have brought over (at least partly). I said originally that I was not going to migrate that content over here, but my hosting package for TV expires later this year, and there’s no reason for me to continue paying for something that I only rarely use. Rather than chance hosing my setup on the new blog, I decided to set up a completely new instance of WordPress and move the content into that. I’ve worked out most of the link bugs, but there are still some inconsistencies here and there, and the look is a bit different since I had to account for the old paradigm of 800 pixel images with no lightbox. The images are all still housed on the TV site, and I’ll have to work on getting those moved over. It will take a while to work all that out due to some poor decisions I made on the old site. Anyway, all three-plus years of TV posts are now on this site, so have fun rooting through the Archive. :-)

tvheader