Simply Realistic Retouching

The key to easy and effective skin retouching is minimizing the bad without obliterating the good

I have a theory about skin retouching: The only thing worse than an unretouched portrait is an overly retouched portrait. My goal is always to improve the subject’s skin without creating an image that looks fake. That’s the biggest challenge ultimately. Anybody can make skin pretty with diffusion and blur, but retouching skin without obliterating... Read more

Show Clipping For Black & White

Use this handy Lightroom feature to ensure deep blacks and bright whites

In addition to the histogram, one of the most useful tools for checking your exposure in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 is the Show Clipping option. You can toggle it on and off in the View menu or with the keyboard shortcut “J”. Show Clipping identifies shadow and highlight areas at the extreme ends of the range where your current exposure... Read more

Converting To Black & White

Using Adobe Lightroom’s powerful tools for translating color images to monochrome

It’s easy to convert a digital image from color to black-and-white. The challenge is to do it well. Replicating the richness of silver-based black-and-white images is the ultimate goal, and while there are lots of options out there, there’s one ubiquitous photo management and RAW editing tool that’s full of straightforward, but powerful... Read more

Instagramification

Tips for finding an audience with the popular Instagram App

Instagram has become a leading social network with its highly addictive feed of visual candy. Photographers can network with each other, sharing inspiring images and new techniques, and connect with potential clients by showcasing new work on a regular basis. With loose rules, you’re free to personally define your own approach to the Instagram... Read more

Multi-Shot Noise Reduction

As great as digital camera sensors and processors have become at combating noise, this film grain-reminiscent interference can still rear its ugly head at high ISOs and in long exposures.

As great as digital camera sensors and processors have become at combating noise, this film grain-reminiscent interference can still rear its ugly head at high ISOs and in long exposures. So, reducing excessive noise, or literally improving the signal-to-noise ratio, is as important as ever. There are plenty of traditional approaches to eliminating... Read more

Workflow, Start To Finish Part 3

Backup is the stuff of nightmares, or dreams, depending on how you back up.

Backup is the stuff of nightmares, or dreams, depending on how you back up. As with all workflow, backup will vary from photographer to photographer based on shooting habits, computer systems, work environment and your own conscience. But with all things considered, backup has one end goal: If your hard drive crashes, all your files, programs and images... Read more

Workflow, Start To Finish Part 2

In the first part of this three-part workflow series, we looked at downloading and browsing images after your shoot.

In the first part of this three-part workflow series, we looked at downloading and browsing images after your shoot. With your images downloaded into your database, the next step is image optimization. One important point should be made right at the beginning. I don’t optimize all of my images. I’ll make a collection of my best images from... Read more

Workflow, Start To Finish, Part 1

My shutter seems like it’s going to catch on fire at my current frame rate.

"Click click click click click click." My shutter seems like it’s going to catch on fire at my current frame rate. I’m leaning off a cliff on Mount Lemmon, near Tucson, in the middle of a photo shoot for Nikon. My job for the last week has been photographing adventure sports, logging thousands of miles shooting everything from... Read more

New In Lightroom 5

The newest version of Adobe’s popular Photoshop Lightroom 5 adds several features that further expand Lightroom’s ability to handle the entire photo workflow, from organization to processing and sharing.

UPRIGHT The newest version of Adobe’s popular Photoshop Lightroom 5 adds several features that further expand Lightroom’s ability to handle the entire photo workflow, from organization to processing and sharing. Two of our favorite new features are Upright and the Advanced Healing brush. These tools make quick work of common photo enhancements. UPRIGHT ... Read more

Fast Portrait Fixes

Portrait retouching is a fine art in itself, and it can be really time consuming to achieve meticulous results.

Portrait retouching is a fine art in itself, and it can be really time consuming to achieve meticulous results. Using traditional photo software, you’d need to master several of the more challenging techniques—masking, cloning, transform tools and more—to get results like those possible with dedicated portrait enhancement software Portrait... Read more

Convert To Black & White

My photography career began 30 years ago as a photojournalism student in college.

My photography career began 30 years ago as a photojournalism student in college. Each week, I would be assigned a story to cover and off I’d go with my Nikon FM2 and 50mm lens in search of images. But capturing the images was only half the story. The best part, I thought, was getting to develop my shots in the darkroom. I can almost smell the... Read more

5 Essential Photo Enhancements

No matter what you’re shooting or how you’re shooting it, there are a few areas in which almost every image can be improved.

No matter what you’re shooting or how you’re shooting it, there are a few areas in which almost every image can be improved. Here are the five essential photo enhancements you should make to every image you shoot. 1 FINE-TUNE THE EXPOSURE I frequently rely on the wide exposure latitude of my RAW image files to wrangle significantly over-... Read more
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