Digital Graduated Filters
Balance extreme contrast with this digital interpretation of a classic photo filter Back in the age of film, I carried several graduated neutral-density filters. They were both hard to pronounce and hard to use.
What to do when the light is too extreme for one shot Sooner or later, a photographer will run into the brick wall of the limitations of the digital camera sensor. Sensors today are very good, but they’re incapable of capturing the full range of tonality—from extreme shadow to bright highlights—that our eyes can see.
Awaken The Artist Within
Plug in to the creative power of plug-ins The Beatles were wonderfully talented musicians and songwriters, creating original music that seems to never go out of style. On occasion, however, the Fab Four got a little help from their friends—friends who included music icons such as Eric Clapton and Billy Preston. Who knows, those friends may have inspired the song “With a Little Help from My Friends.”
Pro Tips: Demystifying Image Resizing
Digging in to Photoshop’s five resampling options Depending on how we want to use an image, we often need to create new copies at different resolutions. You might be making your image smaller for use on the web or increasing the resolution to make a larger print.
Keep The Noise Down In Your Digital Images
It’s the grain of the digital age. Learn how to tame it.
Noise, the digital equivalent of film grain, can be a challenge to overcome. It appears as an irregular, sand-like texture that, if small, is essentially invisible; if large, it can be unsightly and a distraction from your image. Noise can have color to it (chromatic noise) or only vary in brightness (luminance noise). (As with grain, this fine-patterned look is sometimes desirable for certain creative effects.)
Photoshop Actions And Batch Processing
Skip to the good parts with photoshop actions and batch processing I frequently hear photographers talk about maximizing their time behind a camera and minimizing their time at the computer. It's not the creative postproduction that these photographers want to avoid—it's the digital drudgery that can consume so much of a one's time. Tasks like file management and basic processing aren't nearly as fun and interesting as creative retouching and image processing.
Digital Infrared Photography
How to use software to creatively enhance
Digital infrared photography opens up a whole new world of creativity, even for photographers who already have a creative bent. If you have an older digital camera that you're not using, two companies, Life Pixel (www.lifepixel.com) and IRDigital (www.irdigital.net), convert many Canon and Nikon cameras—both SLRs and compact models—to infrared-only cameras. The image for this article, taken in Mongolia, was taken with a converted Canon SD-800 compact camera.
Pro Tips: Black-And-White
The classic look of monochrome is as popular as ever. Here’s how to get the best results. Getting good black-and-white prints used to mean mixing batches of chemicals, being secluded in a darkened room, calculating exposure times, dodging and burning, then finally watching an image magically appear out of the developer soup onto a sheet of paper. While digital photography made it easier to get images without the effort or cost of processing film, it wasn't until the last few years that software applications and, more importantly, inkjet printers were equipped to handle the ever-growing desire of photographers to create and print black-and-white images that rival—or sometimes exceed—what once was the domain of the traditional darkroom.
For the best image quality, focus your sharpening on the areas that need it most
Digital photos typically need some sharpening in Photoshop to bring out the original sharpness of the scene as imaged by the lens. But not all photographs have everything in sharp focus, so they don't need overall sharpening.
A Cloning Primer
Use these tips to master the subtle power of the Clone Stamp tool
No matter how hard you try to keep everything looking good in the picture area, sooner or later something creeps in that doesn't belong. Visual trash creates a distraction from your subject and your composition. It keeps you from enjoying your photo as much as you'd like, and every time you look at the image, that junk just seems to taunt you.
Color Saturation: Getting It Right
For the best color in your images, learn to use these techniques and don’t overdo it While black-and-white photography has enjoyed a rebirth of interest, color is still how the world appears and is mostly photographed. Yet colors you see and experience often don't quite translate to the picture you compose. We also sometimes want to interpret the world's colors in ways that better express how we felt about a subject.