This week’s assignment is SOOC vs AFTER. SOOC= Straight Out of Camera. Of course, real photographers strive to get everything just perfect in-camera. ( I am not a “real” photographer ) However, even the most amazing digital photographer needs some knowledge in the Photoshop “digital darkroom” even if only to sharpen for web or print. I spent a lot of time, years ago, wondering why MY photos were not as vibrant and “sharp” as other online photographers that I admired and then learned the truth after joining an amazing website called ILP. ( http://ilovephotography.com ) Sure, great exposure/focus etc, in-camera, is the goal but those amazing colors that are shown as the final product? Editing software. That amazing sharpness on the website? Editing software. If I wanted to learn how to be a digital photographer I needed to learn Photoshop.
Confession: The first day I loaded up Photoshop CS2…I cried. I cried because nothing had ever made me feel so stupid so quickly. I really thought I would never EVER figure it all out but I am glad I pushed through. While I still appreciate the amazing things that Photoshop can do…I think, this Spring, I am going to focus on getting everything as close to “perfect” in-camera and create a work flow, in post-production that is “clean” and more natural. Time to learn to be that “real” photographer…*sigh*
But for now…here are a few of my entries for this week’s assignment. The first photo, in each frame, is SOOC…I do not think I even remembered to sharpen them for web…and the second is “after” a result in keeping with my “style” of results.
Once upon a lifetime ago I had the time to rent some lenses and play around with macro photography. It was a beautiful lens(Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM) and felt so amazing on-camera…it felt “real” with it’s metal body and smooth movements…but, alas, I had to return it. The SOOC shot is not bad…probably a half step underexposed, maybe? The way I processed it, AFTER, now that I look at it…the processing has removed the detail on the droplet and on the flower petal. A lighter hand would be a better idea on this shot. I should have masked the flower and brought back some of the detail. Here is a link to another photo using the same lens. http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3016/2404509354_0bd288afc8_o.jpg
The second is a photo that I took the other day of Connor’s hands. I am amazed at how quickly he is growing and was struck by how long and lean his fingers are. I liked the way he was holding his hands as he was “talking” with Corrigan on the floor.
The third is a photo I did with Monika this past summer. My SOOC shot is underexposed ( but obviously not enough..in the SOOC the white on her dress is blown, losing important details) which I tried to do deliberately because the room we were shooting in was empty and flooded by the most amazing natural light. I underexposed in hopes of not losing too much detail. However, you can tell that I got the white balance wrong here…we were moving all over this grand old house with multiple lighting conditions and I do believe that I simply forgot to change it when we found this empty room on the third floor. You can tell by the wall behind her not being white…and her skin having a bit too much “blue” to it. The after I processed to be a sort of Sepia black and white. Not a true orangy sepia…but a slightly warmer traditional black and white.
The final is a photo of Corrigan that I took this week. This is the way I like my black and whites. I know that the trend seems to be much lighter, almost blown out, black and whites and that is nicely suited for newborn portraiture etc…but I like my black and whites to have more depth and use more tones. Having a second look at the final result, now, I think that it probably could use a bump in contrast to give just a little more light and make his skin less gray. I like black and whites for photos that have skin issues such as too much red. Sometimes I see Critiques given that the black and white is “too muddy” and I think that my AFTER, here, might be too muddy. I do like what black and whites do to both Connor and Corrigan’s eyes. They have such light eyes that they show up so contrasted in B&W.
That is all I have, for now, though I do have this before and after on my Flickr page http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1082/1066680037_753de3e670_b.jpg
Today, if you have a moment, will you pray for Kayleigh? Her story can be found here.