50mm Lens, 70-200mm IS lens, Canon 50D, Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Luminar, Photo Editing, Picfair, What I Am Working On

What I Am Working On: Creating a Watermark

Spoiler alert: There’s a bit of a curveball in this post that makes the ending a bit of a cliffhanger.

The directions for making a watermark in Luminar 3 are in the instruction manual under the heading, Working with Layers. I’m starting with that declarative statement because I didn’t find that on my own, I e-mailed the folks at Luminar, and they sent me a link.

ISO 800 50mm f/10 1/100sec

This is actually my second attempt at making a watermark. The first was a bit of a cheat in that I used Photoshop to help me make it. Not that there is something inherently wrong with that, it’s just that if my objective is to no longer have an Adobe subscription, I need to stop using those programs. This time around, I hand wrote “Maranto Photography” and then scanned that as a jpeg to use as my watermark layer.  The instructions Luminar provided are fairly straightforward, although I think that in some places they assume a bit of working knowledge about photo-editing. That’s fine for me, but maybe a bit of stretch for others who don’t have prior experience. Given that not having editing experience is a bit of a selling point for Luminar, I think this is a bit of a potential frustration for users.

Here I am again, a day later, giving it another try:

ISO 200 95mm f/16 1/160sec

This second one worked a bit better in my opinion.  If you are taking a look at the watermark directions from the link above, the step I am fooling with here is the curves.

Here’s the promised curveball, it involves the curves functionality in Luminar, or rather the lack thereof. You may have noticed that the photo in my last post did not have a watermark. That’s not from lack of trying, it’s because I couldn’t get the sliders in curves to function properly, which is a pretty important step in the creation of my watermark.

Here’s the promised cliffhanger, I’ve reported the problem to Luminar. I posted in their community forum and they responded asking me to basically recreate and file the problem. I sat down and did that on Saturday morning. They have received my files, and I am waiting on a response. I’ll be writing up a follow-up blog post.

The photos used for this post were taken on the same day in Normandy France. The first is from Monet’s garden at Giverny, and the second is a view of the lovely town of Les Andelys. The first photo is a work in progress, I’m not crazy about the current edit. The town shot I am happy with and have a version on Picfair. You bet I have added this post to the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, Curves.

Know of an easier way to create a watermark in Luminar 3? leave a link in the comments below.  At this point, Lightroom is leaps and bounds ahead of Luminar in terms of watermarking. Feel free to comment below on any of the edits or watermarking in general.


11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Luminar, Photo A Day, Photo Editing, Photography, What I Am Working On

What I Am Working On: File Handling

One of the things I like to do on this blog is show two versions of an image, one the original as shot file and the other once I have finished editing. Here is an unedited file from Monet’s Giverny gardens:

ISO 200 f/10 1/250sec 19mm

When I am working in Lightroom I use virtual copies.  It’s a nice feature that allows me that have more than one version without taking up a lot of space. Virtual copies are not yet a thing in Luminar 3.  So once I had this edit done:

ISO 200 f/10 1/250sec 19mm

I wanted a copy also of the original.  A search into how to get back to the original without losing my edits revealed nothing. So I signed into a community page for Luminar and asked my question there.  I got a workable answer pretty quickly. Basically, it is possible to go to the history panel, click back to the original, export the file, then reapply the edits. That’s what I’ll be using, at least until virtual copies become available on Luminar.

The edits I have applied include the sky filter, which I am thinking I may have applied a bit too strong, but what do you think? I’ve also used the crop, vignette, and eraser tools. Feel free to leave a comment below.

Added to January Colors and Letters, With the letter G.

Link to the software I am using, Luminar 3.

50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Flowers, Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photography, Wordless Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday: From Monet’s Garden

ISO 800 50mm f/10 1/60sec

Added to Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Colorful and Cee’s Flower of the Day.

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

Revisiting Giverny

I do sometimes edit my photography multiple times. That’s the beauty of digital photography, it is very easy to create several variations of an image without incurring a huge cost, it’s just an investment of time. This morning I began with this image, taken at Claude Monet’s garden at Giverny:

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

If you are a regular reader, you may remember this edit:

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

I wrote about it a few months ago, that edit was about creating a vintage, almost impressionist feel. This morning I was revisiting with the thought of creating a black and white version. It’s an idea I had worked on a few months ago and come up with this version:

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

I wasn’t crazy about it, so instead, I blogged about the color version and decided to let the black and white idea sit for a while. This morning I was back at it, and here is the result:

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

Much better in my opinion. This time I started with a green filter, interesting because that is what improved the sky quite a bit. As I am writing this, it occurs to me that maybe I could have tried a graduated filter with this edit and that might have done quite nice things for the sky. I also darkened the whites in the image and lightened the blacks a bit.

With this edit, there were two things I really wanted to do. One was to improve the sky, make it more interesting. The second was to retain the reflections of the trees and vegetation in the water. Do you think that has happened with this edit? Feel free to leave a comment below. Have thoughts or tips on using a graduated filter on a black and white photo, I would be interested to hear about that as well.


Added to Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Mirror Images or Reflections.

11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Flowers, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photography, Thursday Special


I was lucky enough recently to be able to make a visit to Monet’s house and garden.

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

This shot is of the water garden, there is a more formal style garden closer to the house. It’s a popular place even first thing in the morning still in the off-season. Walking in the garden it stuck me how versatile it was designed to be. Lots of different plants would mean that it would look different over the course of the year. Also, it’s an obviously planned space where the angle of light and time of day would make a big difference.

It’s a popular attraction, so my shots showing the overall gardens have a lot of people in them. It would be lovely to have the place to yourself. I walked this part of the garden twice. Once with my 50mm lens and once with my 11-22mm lens.  The photo in this post was taken with the wider angle lens.

For this particular interpretation of the scene, I wanted to create a vintage look, toning down some of the brightness of the original shot while still maintaining the reflections in the water. I have posted the original shot below. One of the first things I did was crop the photo. I then left a few bright spots in the photo, both in the sky and in the water, to attract attention to the trees and their reflection below.

ISO 800 22mm f/13 1/640sec

What do you think of this particular interpretation? Feel free to leave a comment below.

This post has been added to Thursday’s Special, Pick a Word in June.