11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Luminar, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair, Tuesday Photo Challenge, What I Am Working On

What I Am Working On: Editing in Black and White

This week I was working on learning something new.

I began with this file:

ISO 200 22mm f/16 1/200sec

And a webinar that I was watching which is now archived here. The webinar is about creating a black and white image in Luminar.

Here is my black and white edit:

ISO 200 22mm f/16 1/200sec

No need to adjust your screen. No, I am not kidding about what I wrote above but yes, I am aware that is a color version of my photo.

I’ll take a couple of steps back. The first thing I did was crop the image a bit. Then I used the eraser tool to get rid of whatever that is in the lower left side of the image and a few of the people that were on the beach. I wanted to create a nice expansive space in the foreground of the photo.

Then, I was watching the webinar on creating a black and white image. Often times in black and white edits, you will have the option of putting a color filter on the image, it keeps the image black and white, but depending on the filter, different elements of the photo are accentuated. In this case, I kept it set at just a plain black and white, which makes the photo pretty flat.  Here is a screenshot of what that looked like:

This next screenshot shows that plus my next step which was to drag the luminance sliders around. Making the blue low and the yellow high created the deep blue tones while leaving the stones nice and monochrome:

I was pleased with the way this experiment turned out, but what do you think of the results? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Growth.

Picfair version here.

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11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Luminar, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair, travel, Tuesday Photo Challenge

On the Bank of the River Seine

This post started with a visit to Chateau Gaillard, which is a castle that was built by Richard the Lionheart and sits on the bank of the River Seine in Normandy, France. As you can see from this original shot, it was a beautiful day:

ISO 200 22mm f/16 1/200sec

My first edit was this one:

ISO 200 22mm f/16 1/200sec

I was initially happy with it, but decided last week to take another shot at it and here is the second edit:

ISO 200 22mm f/16 1/200sec

The first change, was a minor one to the cropping. The second was to change the tones just a bit before applying other boosting edits like changes to the sky and sharpening. None of these second edits were massively different than the first, but overall I like the second version better.

What do you think, do you prefer one version over the other or are these similar enough that you don’t have a particular preference? Your thoughts and comments are welcome below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Bank.

Older Picfair version here, newer one here.

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Picfair, Tuesday Photo Challenge

Single Bloom

What first attracted me to this scene was color. I loved the contrast of the deep pink and green, so I took the photo:

ISO 800 50mm f/10 1/50sec

I was using my 50mm lens and centered the flower in the frame. I saw the various other elements, the fence and the rest of the flower and figured that when I was editing, I would probably decide on a crop that would take the flower out of the center. When I was reviewing my files, I made the choice that I found the fence more interesting than the rest of the flower, so I went with this crop:

ISO 800 50mm f/10 1/50sec

A few other edits have been applied here, but not many and none of them too heavy. This gentle, rather delicate looking bloom called for a light touch when it came to editing.

What do you think, do you like this crop? A natural and a man-made object in the same frame can lead to a bit of tension, do you like it here? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Gentle.

Picfair version here.

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Canon Powershot ELPH 320 HS, Cee's Fun Foto Challenge, Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Luminar, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair, Tuesday Photo Challenge

Cambridge Morning

While autumn can often be rainy and overcast here in England, it can also be brilliant like it was recently on a morning while I was walking in Cambridge:

ISO 200 4.3mm f/2.7 1/320sec

That original file was taken with my point and shoot. My first edit is below:

ISO 200 4.3mm f/2.7 1/320sec

The image has been cropped a bit and I’ve used a foliage enhancer slider to give the colors a bit of a boost.  I liked but didn’t love the result. One of the problems is that part of the sky has been blown out completely. There is no information there, so “fixing” it becomes a bit tricky. The two options that came to mind were sky replacement or a more radical crop.  I went with the latter:

ISO 200 4.3mm f/2.7 1/320sec

I went that direction for compositional reasons. The photo is now much more about the boats, which looked beautiful in the morning light. I also really liked the various reflections in the water and this crop accentuates them. From there I boosted the various golden tones in the image, giving it a bit of a jeweled looked.

While it took a few edits and some time and thought to get to the final edit, I was happy with the edit. What do you think of the final version? Do you like the final composition or do you prefer the original? The crop really does change the image quite a bit. Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

Picfair version here.

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Reflection, Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Places People Visit and Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Changeable.

 

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Canon Powershot ELPH 320 HS, Luminar, One Word Sunday, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Tuesday Photo Challenge

Happy Birthday St. Louis Missouri!

This photo was taken on June 6, 2014.

ISO 100 4.3 f/8.0 1/160sec

That year St. Louis was turning 250 years old. 256 cakes like this one were put out all over the city and surrounding area. Some of them are still on display, a current listing is here.  I’ll be honest, when I first heard this was going to be a thing, my reaction was something like…oh. Then I started seeing them around town. They really were works of art. I ended up with quite a little gallery of them. The one above was one of my favorites because of where and how it was placed. The St. Louis Art Museum is free and located in Forest Park. It’s a gem and well worth a visit if you are ever in the area.  Here is my Luminar edited version of the original file:

ISO 100 4.3 f/8.0 1/160sec

The original photo was intended as a realistic snapshot. It was shot in the bright light of a St. Louis afternoon.  The edit has been given a bit of a bronze tone that I thought made the shadows look more interesting. I cropped it because I thought the original had a lot of not very interesting sky. I also removed the working crane.  I did try a crop that would straighten the photo but to my surprise, I thought it made the photo less interesting, so the tilt stayed.

I like this edit, but other than making an appearance here it will pretty much stay in my photo files as a memory of the fun little cakes that dotted St. Louis in 2014.  Do you like this edit? Has your town done something like this? I know there are several US cities that have done similar things. Your comments on the edit and community art projects are welcome below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Birthday and in a bit of a cheeky way to One Word Sunday, Fire.

 

 

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11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Computer Software, Luminar, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Tuesday Photo Challenge

Go Big, Or Go Home

I’ve made a big decision this week. Well, photographically speaking anyway. I’ve bought a new editing software, Luminar 2018. For its first real trial run I pulled out a photo of the Alhambra:

ISO 1000 19mm f/13 1/1250sec

The Alhambra is a huge complex. I had walked it the day before and was interested in getting a shot that would show how it fits into the local landscape.  The file below is my edited version:

ISO 1000 19mm f/13 1/1250sec

As with anything new, it is obvious to me that I will be watching a lot of tutorials on how to use Luminar more effectively.  As far as advanced tools go, one that I really want to work well in my editing software is the eraser tool. In the original file, mid-ground, on the right side, there is a crane. I removed it for the bottom file. The edit was pretty easy to make, once I’d watched a video explaining the steps. I was happy with the result as well.

If you like to read about editing, I’ll talk a bit here about why I made this purchase. I have been using Lightroom and Photoshop as my main editing tools. My two most serious complaints about them are the subscription model and the need for an internet connection to use them. Buying a stand-alone piece of software requires a one-time purchase, I’m never obligated to buy an upgrade. To be honest, because I do a lot of editing, I probably will buy an upgrade at some point. With this software, no internet is needed to make my edits. In the coming years, I do see myself as potentially being in places with less internet.

Why did I buy now? A couple of factors. Luminar 2018 is coming out with a library feature that will potentially boost the cost of this software. I purchased it now and will have access to that update at no additional cost. Another important factor is that in March my Adobe subscription will be due for renewal. Buying now gives me time to learn this software and see if it will actually work for my needs. If it doesn’t, Luminar does actually work as a plug-in with Photoshop and Lightroom. That’s what my research indicated anyway. At this point, I have not installed it as such, because I would like to use Luminar as much as possible on its own, in order to make a better decision for myself come March.

What can you expect as a reader of this blog? Me, experimenting. Because I already write a lot about my editing process my posts will be very similar I expect. Making this switch has already been several months of research in the making. As a reader, you will see the results unfold. Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Go Big!

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11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Tuesday Photo Challenge

In Someone’s World

This structure, complete with water wheel!, is part of what is known as the Queen’s Hamlet at Versailles.

ISO 640 14mm f/13 1/160sec

Walking around the hamlet, it seems no surprise that many accused Marie-Antoinette of living in her own world, far removed from that of her subjects. The grounds and gardens of Versailles are very beautiful though, even on a less than perfect weather day.  The original file that my black and white is based on is this one:

ISO 640 14mm f/13 1/160sec

The sky and the light, as you can see, were overcast and drab, so I decided to try this image as a black and white. As I was experimenting with the different filters in Lightroom, it was the infrared one that I ended up liking the best. I mention that in part because I don’t often use that filter. The other edit that was important here was a graduated filter which I ran from the top to the bottom of the frame, that had the effect of darkening the sky the most and the snow the least. I used the healing tool as well to remove the wire in the lower right hand of the photo and the people who are in the original but not the monochrome version.

Can you imagine building a village in your backyard? The tree fort I built as a kid did not include a water wheel I can assure you, but maybe you thought on a grander scale than I did? Your comments on this pretend world at Versailles or the “real” one you built as a child are welcome below!

Cheers!

Add to Tuesday Photo Challenge, Our World and Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge, Circles and Curves.

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