I’ve taken a little detour, back to an older photo:
This original file was shot in December 2017 in Serengeti National Park. We sat an watched these lions for a while so I have a lot of files. Many are very similar and I have not yet edited them all. I enjoy every once in a while going back through them and picking out one to edit.
I’ve used Luminar for this edit. One extra edit that I don’t often do, particularly in my nature images is use the clone and stamp brush. With that brush, I removed a branch that was between me and the female lion and showed in the original photo near her rear paw. I then added the Luminar look, Camden.
The Made with Luminar Series
This image is part of a project I am calling Made with Luminar. What the images in this series have in common is the software used to edit them, Luminar 3. As with my usual blog posts particulars of the camera settings can be found in the caption below the image. I’ll then explain what other filters and edits have been applied, often mentioning what layer and therefore order that they were applied. The text of these posts includes any Luminar “Looks” that have been applied to the photo. Each look is a series of presets that are applied to the photo. Where applicable I will mention what changes I have made to any of the looks. A full explanation of looks is available here on their website, https://skylum.com/luminar/user-guides/chapter-14-working-with-luminar-looks
You can assume basic edits have been applied. My most common edits are cropping, detail enhancement, and vignette. Specific questions or thoughts on the image are welcome in the comment section below.
Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Cat.
One of the fun things about this January Squares challenge has been to the opportunity to edit photos in a different way and revisit files. Today’s file is one that was shot in March of last year:
Shot from my backyard with my Canon 80D and the longest lens I own which is a 70-200mm. I started by googling recommended camera settings and gave it a try. Not bad I thought. Here is the resulting square edit:
There is the obvious crop and in Luminar I added the Natural look.
The Instagram version is here:
Added to Day 15 of January Squares.
It’s tough to be a piglet, all those siblings jostling for a spot:
For the edit of this photo, I kept it pretty simple. It’s cropped, then I boosted the luminance of some of the warmer tones and applied a slight vignette:
Here is the Instagram version:
My addition to Day 3 of January Squares.
It’s been almost two years since I was in Tanzania and I still find it difficult to exactly express why this trip was so important to me. Even harder is to distil that thought into a single image. I have many files from that trip that I have chosen to keep but have not been through the editing process yet. The lens artist photo challenge for this week prompted me to go through them and this is the image that floated to the top of my imagination:
The vast landscape that was teeming with life. The humor of being caught in a wildlife traffic jam. The color of the landscape itself. These are all things that appeal to me in this image. For this particular image though, it is the inquisitive zebra that is the story. My edits reflect this. The crop and placement of the vignette are the most simplistic edits I have applied to accomplish this. The other technique I used was after applying a filter that gave this photo a bit of a vintage memory look, I used a brush at 20% to remove the filter a bit on the zebras in the foreground. The final edit is this:
What do you think of this edit? Feel free to leave a comment in the comment section. Because this was also a part of my Made with Luminar series, the next part of this post will spell out some of the details of the edit.
The Made with Luminar Series
This image is part of a project I am calling Made with Luminar. What the images in this series have in common is the software used to edit them, Luminar 3. As with my usual blog posts particulars of the camera settings can be found in the caption below the image. The text of these posts include the Luminar “Looks” that have been applied to the photo. Each look is a series of presets that are applied to the photo. Where applicable I will mention what changes I have made to any of the looks. A full explanation of looks is available here on their website, https://skylum.com/luminar/user-guides/chapter-14-working-with-luminar-looks
You can assume other edits have been applied. My most common edits are cropping, detail enhancement, and vignette. Specific questions or thoughts on the image are welcome in the comment section below.
Luminar Look applied: Past Days. The texture within the look was reduced and the filter is set to 74% application. A mask was added and the filter was brushed out with a 20% opacity brush over the zebras in the foreground. A few more spots of the texture in the sky were erased.
I write a lot about how I edit my photos. I also write quite a bit about how I have a method for discarding files. Today’s post is about the exception to my usual approach. At the time I am writing this, I have sorted through, edited, and discarded files through early July 2018. The exception is my trip to Tanzania. I was there in December 2017 and I still have almost all of my files from that trip. That trip was one I wasn’t sure if I would ever really have the opportunity to make and it meant a lot to me to be able to go. I have a lot of files that are still not edited, but this week I picked this one to work on:
These young elephants were just off the road, seemingly content to munch away and ignore us. When it came to the edit, I wanted to express the serenity of this moment. Here is the edit:
I started with a crop. From there, I created another layer to work on just the sky, as that was probably the element I was least pleased with in the original file. I recently posted about a new method I have been using to create a sky, so the details for that can be found here. My other edit was to use the Orton filter within Luminar to create the slight jewel-like glow in the final edit, to replace the harsher tones of the original file.
What do you think of these edits? Does this edit have a serene feel to it? Feel free to comment below.
Added to Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Wild.
Picfair version is here.
Often when I am shooting nature images, I take a lot of photos, with the thought of later editing mostly for clarity, retaining the story as is. And then there are the times when I chose to edit the story itself:
In this original file, I think the story includes the protective nature of both the adult swans. My edit includes just one:
I’ve taken a lot of liberties with color as well. The result is a completely different story. In this new image, the row of cygnets is much more important. From that, the lines and textures in the water and on the birds become elements that are more dominant than they were in the original file.
If you are wondering about the backstory of this photo, it was taken in June 2018 at a small lake near where I live. The cygnets who were born in this clutch did not make it to maturity. The adults are still on the lake and within the last week, I am fairly certain have constructed a new nest.
What do you think of the liberties I have taken with this story? Feel free to leave a comment below.
Added to A Photo a Week Challenge: Getting Your Ducks in a Row.
Picfair version is here.
Part of what I enjoy about photography is the editing process. These days there are a lot of editing software choices on the market. Then once you are settled on one that you like, the edit options within that software are usually extensive. That’s great. Except when it is so much that it becomes a distraction. The reality is that I shoot a lot of photos like this:
When I then open this photo in the edit tab of Luminar 3 I have a lot of filter options, but there are a few that I almost always use. The rest are helpful sometimes but are just clutter to my process at other times. A way to clear that clutter is to create a custom workspace with just select filters. I did just that and here is what it looks like:
To create this, I did the following. First, where the dropdown now says “Amy 1”, I clicked the down arrow, and selected “clear workspace”. Then from the filters I picked the ones I almost always use and in the order I use them, opened them, that added them to the list you see there. Then I clicked again on that down arrow and one of the options is “save custom workspace” it then prompted me for a name, that’s when I added “Amy 1”. Now anytime I open a new image, I can click that down arrow and my saved workspace is there. Or, even better, I also clicked to have that show as the default. Here are those filters applied to my original image:
From there I could have added more filters and done some other editing. Sometimes I will, but in this case, I wasn’t really looking to do anything else with this image.
I spend quite a bit of time thinking about my photography workflow. My hope is that this workspace will make the process a bit smoother. Do you use a custom workspace in your editing process? I never have before so this is just something I’m giving a try. Feel free to comment on that or on my edit below.
Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Round.