Saturday, August 29, 2015

A Little Help Never Hurts...Part 2

Same kind of post as yesterday.... going to show you a progression of a photo from the Straight out of camera version to the final edit...

I am learning so much in the Arcanum and I cannot sing it's praises enough!!
Seriously, if you are interested in increasing knowledge and skill in your photogrphy, give some serious thought to joining. You can cancel at any time if you feel it's not a good fit!!

>>> The Arcanum Website <<< here is the flower of today....

This is the photo straight out of my camera..... I really do enjoy getting down in the nitty gritty of flowers and showing the layers and textures!!! God is an amazing designer!! He perfected beauty way before man felt a need to have perfection!!!
I like this photo pretty well here, there are obvious issues. One being the petals on the bottom are cut off.... that is not a problem though!!!


This is what I presented to my Cohort (July 2015) for Level 8 (where I had to narrow down a selection of my photos from 10 to 3 for a critique!)...  I simply cropped it so all of the sides are evenly proportioned. No biggie... All of the post-processing adjustments for this version were made with Picasa. A FREE editing software offered (and supported) by Google!! It's all I had at the time and I really enjoyed working with it. It is a great way to "get your feet wet" in the world of post processing!!!

Here is the link if your interested  >>> Picasa Website <<<

After I cropped the image, I did a few color adjustments. In Picasa the first thing I always did is darken the shadows... it's a slider bar adjustment that really makes the photo begin to pop a bit.
I did a soft focus on this one too!! =)  I thought it made it look kind of dreamy.... I also added a vignette. Usually vignettes are black. I chose to go lighter on this one and use a grey tone. One of the things I LOVE about Picasa is there is a rainbow selection for vignettes which mean the option of vignette color are pretty much limitless!!!! =) =)   I thought the grey vignette added to the dreaminess of this photo and I really liked it!!!

For my Level 16 work in the Arcanum I had to reprocess photos presented to my Cohort in any of the Levels of 1 - 8. Just like the first flower I showed you yesterday.... here is the link in case you missed it!! (gasp!!)
(just kidding!!)
>>> A Little Help Never Hurts (Part 1) <<<

I probably should mention here that for almost a month now, I have been using the Free trial of the Creative Cloud Photography plan!!! Here is a link to that....
>>> CC-Lightroom & Photoshop <<<
I will be starting my subscription in September as I don't think I can do without them now!!! Lightroom and Photoshop can do so much more than Picasa, although, I will keep Picasa because it does a few things better!!! =)

Now for the reprocessed ones!!

This version I processed only in Lightroom. Started by cropping (again! because I started back with the original photo!). Did some spot removal because there were a few white spots on the petals (I may have forgotten to mention that previously...) Did a "Vibrance" adjustment. Also adjusted Shadows and Contrast. The photo at that point seemed to have some "noise" going on so I did a "Luminace Smoothing"... it helped!!

Then I went even further.....

I took the photo from Lightroom into Perfect Effects (I have Perfect Effects because my generous Master in the Arcanum saw something in me that would respond to this program!!)
As a military wife, stay-at-home mom I do not have much any extra income. FREE is ALWAYS better for me. I do pay my Arcanum dues ($79 per month)  myself (as to not burden my family with that cost!) with the small amount I get paid to keep the books for my church...

This is the final (and again, best, IMO) version of the image....
In Perfect Effects I did a noise reduction again. I used a filter called "Bleach Bypass" which reduced the saturation quite a bit! and I did a filter called Grunge which gave it a bit of texture and ended with a Vignette. One of the things I like about Perfect Effect's vignette is it is not just a standard dark or light fading.... there are MANY options and I chose the one called "Strong" but it uses the color of the photo, not black, which I really liked!!!! =)


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