This week, a great DIY project which will give you a Gorillapod-style monopod that you can wrap around a fence, a tree or whatever,
Google and MIT developing an algorithm which will remove reflections from photos,
Fuji’s new X-T1-IR, a mirrorless infra-red body,
through the week, David Foggin asked (on Facebook) about Lightroom workflow.
This was my rather lengthy response:
Well, obviously everyone has their own preferences, but my workflow looks like this:
* import images into LR using YYYY-MM-DD as the folder structure.
* I personally don’t rename images, as once the metadata is added, everything is searchable.
* Next step is metadata. I’ll add heirarchial keywords for location (Australia > New South Wales > Central Coast > Gosford, etc). This means that even though when you look at one image, you’ll only see “Gosford” as a keyword, that image will be included in the search results if I was to search for “New South Wales”.
* Add metadata for any people I care about, or may later want to search for.
* Depending on what the shoot is, I generally then take a quick run through the images in grid view, but with the thumbnails enlarged so that I can see about 4 rows of 5 images (roughly). This means they’re large enough for me to get a reasonable idea straight away about whether or not it’s an image I want to spend some time on.
* Those I think I want to look at further (for processing), I’ll press the 3 key to rate them 3 stars.
* Next, I’ll hit the “metadata” button and sort by ISO.
* I have already created Noise Reduction profiles for my a850 for 800, 1600, 3200 and 6400iso.
* If present, I’ll select all images shot at 800iso and process with my 800iso NR preset.
* Same for any images at the higher iso settings.
* Once I’ve done that, I’ll hit the “attribute” button and select ‘3 stars or greater’ (still in grid view). Now, I’m only seeing those images that I’ve rated.
* I generally never shoot in AWB. I always assign correct WB at the time of capture, so I rarely have to alter the WB in post. Sometimes though, the camera gets it wrong. So WB is my first ‘development’ stage.
* Once any/all WB issues are sorted, I’ll look at images on an individual basis.
* First stop is to review the histogram. Did I nail the exposure? I generally “shoot to the right”, so I may have to bring exposure DOWN a smidge.
* While doing this, I’m watching the histogram. What I really want to see is my highs extending to the right side of the histogram without clipping, and my shadows extending to the left without clipping either.
* If I bring the exposure down so no highlights are off the right hand edge of the histogram, but the shadows AREN’T reaching the left edge, then it’s time to INCREASE contrast.
* Now it’s a balancing act between exposure, contrast, and the ‘whites’ and ‘blacks’ sliders. Getting the histogram to extend the full width without clipping.
* Next, I’ll add a bit of ‘clarity’ (usually somewhere around 50%). This may push whites or blacks over the edge, so a quick revisit to the “whites” and “blacks” sliders may be in order.
* Sometimes, you just know when you shoot that you’re going to need to tweak certain areas of an image because the contrast is beyond the camera’s ability. In these images, I’ll generally hit “K” (adjustment brush) and paint in negative exposure on the highlights. Here, be adventurous with the ‘density’ control. I’ll set the ‘exposure’ of the brush to be quite severe, the flow at 100%, but back the density off until I get just the right amount of control. The beauty of this approach is that you can always tweak that density control up or down and repaint to adjust the exposure on one small area of the image.
* Or “M” for the graduated filter. Good for taming bright skies or underexposed foregrounds.
* Next, sharpening if required. For the web, I don’t usually bother with this, but for printing a photobook, definitely.
* If I decided on a B+W treatment, I’ll use the desaturation slider, and will generally also use a bit of shadow tone and highlight tone (can’t think of the correct name for those controls off the top of my head!) to introduce a duotone effect.
* And that’s about it. Choose an export preset (I’ve built about 10 different export profiles for different uses like Facebook, my photo blog, Google photos backup, phone, etc).
* And that’s about it, but you probably stopped reading about 500 words back.
David also came across this Lightroom plugin which can automate the application of noise reduction settings based on ISO metadata. I haven’t taken the plunge yet, but it does look pretty cool.
Brian Houghton wrote to let us know that he wanted to see the before and after images from Borneo, but the recalcitrant image plugin on shuttersincpodcast.com made it all too tedious. I haven’t given up on fixing it yet, Brian!
Mark Hudson wrote to tell us about the Nexto DI media storage device, which could be a better option than that other piece of crap I carted around Borneo for 3 weeks.
Adam sent us off to watch this voiceover-less video about the production of Nikon film SLR’s in the 90’s.
Carl sent us a great read on the argument for/against the DNG format,
and a link to the B+H Photo Sony a7rii Live event taking place Auygust 12, 2015.
Glynn brought us new David DuChemin eBook and video training,
Canon France Video of the Indian Holi Festival,
we didn’t make the list of 7 Photography Podcasts that are worth a listen. (Pfft. What would they know?)
Olympus has an interesting new patent in the works,
Sony RX10’s little brother, the RX100iv,
DPReview reaffirming that they can’t shoot to save themselves, but the RX10 images look pretty damned good at 6400 iso,
a cheap DIY Light tube,
the video camera that edits for you AND adds music!
amazing moon eclipsing Earth GIF,
take a fakation thanks to KFC Romania,
the instagram account that became a viral sensation, but was it a bit tacky?
The ISS guy again,
John Swainston’s pic,
and finally, KFC again. This time, it’s the KFC bucket that also happens to be a photo printer. No, it’s not an April Fools joke!
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