Tuesday, December 29

FCCP: #6 Lightroom Learning Series - Develop Module 2015 - 2016 ... jumping in!

The 12/29 meeting at Suite 4K expanded on last week's Intro to the Develop Module by exploring in more detail the Panel Modules and sub-Modules. Jeff edited several photos demonstrating the many tools of Basic, Detail. Lens Correction and the Effects modules and as always hosted member Q&A. 

.. The Basic Panel sub-module initiates the workflow in the Develop Module (under the Histogram display. See Basic Panel Tips
.. The Detail Panel sub-module provides key sharpening tools: Amount, Radius, Detail and Masking.
.. The Lens Correction sub-module is another tool used to correct various optical issues commonly seen on all lenses.
.. Jeff continued with sub-modules: Split Toning, Effects, Camera Calibration 

In the Panel reviews (that can only be appreciated by attending the meeting), below are tips keyboard and Toolbar tips:
.. 'T' turns the Toolbar On and Off
.. 'E' brings up the Loupe View (single image)
.. 'G' returns application to the Grid view in the Library
.. 'Y/Y' provides a before and after view of edited image
.. 'P or X' allows you to Pick or Reject the current image in Loupe View (same as using the two flags in the Toolbr)
.. '**' Star ratings are one of several tools used to rate your photos. There is no set criteria for their application, however, it is recommended the user establish their own criteria apply ii (i.e. 0 = no edit, 1 = delete, 2 = maybe ...)
.. 'Color Tags' is an additional organizing tool (again, define your own critieria 

Throughout this review of the Develop Module all of the adjustment tools were used in many configurations. Here is a short overview crop, spot removal, red eye, gradient filter, radian filter, adjustment brush. More to come ...

Friday, December 25

Change Your Perspective

Jay Maisel says we should think about what we are shooting and ask ourselves 'how can I shoot this scene or subject to make it special?'. Reading about changing one's perspective (or better yet, asking myself how do I shoot a subject that captures the subject differently) I recalled a photo series that 'viewed' a basketball tip-off from underneath. So why not try it? One shot provided by a FCCP member straight on and the other from underneath looking up!

Wednesday, December 23

FCCP 100 Killer Tips

This year I joined the Florida Center for Creative Photography (FCCP). I actively participated in Meet-ups, Lightroom classroom training and Photo walks with a great group of members. Looking back, I honestly have to say that my understanding of photography composition, camera features and post-process editing has increased enormously ... and it is becoming a passion.

I have collected many notes and tips over the year and want to share them. Click the link the FCCP 100 Killer Tips.

Tuesday, December 22

FCCP: #5 Lightroom Learning Series 2015 - 2016 Develop Module Intro

Monday's (12/21/15) meeting continued FCCP's 2015 - 2016 Lightroom Series with an introduction to the Develop Module. Jeff provide an overview of each of the Panels and briefly touched on the Tools within each Panel - enticing the attendees to want more! Over the next several (4-5) weeks, Jeff will go into detail on all the tools. Something anyone interested in learning Lightroom SHOULD NOT MISS!

Below, I have attempted to capture several key highlights from the meeting and also provide members with other highlights of Jeff's Develop Module series captured in November's meeting on MyDigitalPhotoJourney Blog.

.. Expand view of photo and remove left and right Panel by using Tab
.. Further expand view of photo and remove all Panels and Toolbars (top and bottom) by using Shift + Tab
.. Just remove the Toolbar by pressing 'T'

Left Panel


Presets - Adobe provides several default presets you can use. Simply open Presets, then press/click Preset Group name and then using your cursor, scroll through the individual Presets Adobe provides and view in Navigator the effect that would be applied. When you find one you like Click and Apply. Note: you can also create your own..that you have post-processed. Click the '+' and rename if desired. You can then at any time revisit that image view at the time captured.

Snapshot - a Snapshot is a freeze-frame of your photo at that moment in time. I can see that during post-process you want to experiment, yet you do not want to scroll through lots of history, Snapshot may be the answer. Read more here Snapshot

History - History is just what it's name implies. It is an ongoing chronology of any and all edits made to an image starting at Import. History is forever.

Collections - Collections are Adobe's answer to those of us who are folder-holics (IMHO). Collections provides a powerful alternate to 'only' folders and has 'Search' capability that allows you to search all your Collection titles.
A tip Jeff shared is to create a Smart Collection named 'No Keywords' or 'Not Rated' and use that as a repository for future post-processing activities (knowing those Collections contain photos you have not vetted or reviewed)

Histogram - the Histogram shows any photo that is in Loupe view. You cannot remove the Navigator, only hide it, but it provides a great tool especially when scrolling through History or Presets (above). To the right of the Navigator twirl, view are options are available. We will learn more on these views, but Jeff noted, select 1:1 and at most 1:2 sizing when working in the Detail tool (in the right Panel)

Right Panel


The Right Panel contains the key editing tools starting with the Histogram. An important and 'first look' tool to check if your image has blown out backs and highlights (whites). More to come as Jeff goes into detail on the Right Panel
The tools, options and details that are available in the Right Panel could fill a book. At this point, and in anticipation of the next 3-5 weeks, it is best to say we will learn more than we can absorb in this Get Acquainted to the Develop Module overview meeting.

... and since we are talking about Panels, here is a Lightroom Guide to Panel Tricks to review.

Sunday, December 20

Photography Life's A6000 Recommended Settings

"The Sony A6000 has a myriad of settings that can be confusing to understand, so the below information is provided as a guide for those that struggle and just want to get started with a basic understanding of these settings." See Recommended Sony A6000 Settings

Tuesday, December 15

FCCP: #4 Lightroom Learning Series 2015 - Import Photos

The House was Packed!... the FCCP meeting was standing room only on Monday Dec 14th. This meeting concluded the Library review and we moved to Lr's Import features. To import photos, navigate to Import via File > Import and Videos. When the Import screen appears there are four (4) options for importing photos:
1. Copy as DNG: convert to Adobe RAW ( not necessary)
2. Copy: copies files from SD card, Compact Flash onto drive (and leaves orginals on source 'in case'
3. Move: used to actually 'move' photos from one drive/location to another, ( used rarely)
4. Add: allows Lightroom to note or record into database where the source photos reside

After navigating to the location of your photos (SD, external drive, folder on computer, etc.) the right 'panel' of the Import Module will open and show features avaialable for one of the above four import options above. Below are few Tips and Notes from the meeting:

File Handling drop-down
.. Always check 'Don't Import Suspected Duplicates'
.. Select 'Minimal' in Build Previews for improved performance
.. If shooting RAW plus JPEG (Lr sees these as duplicates) - use Preferences > General. select 'Treat JPEG files next to RAW ...'
.. For added backup protection select Make a Second Copy during import (remember external drives are inexpensive)
.. If you are NOT a folder-holic select Add to Collection during import (see other posts related to Collections versus Folders in Lightroom)

File Renaming

.. Tip:use Template 'Date-Filename'

Apply During Import

.. Keywords, Keywords, Keywords - very important
.. Note: the use of Keywords is NOT to be able to narrow photo search to the one photo. However, Keywords in combination with Ratings, Colors and Metadata search you are able to narrow thousands of images to a group to scan and select the desired photo
.. Below the photo view you can select Sort (most common is Capture Time)
.. One trick is to use the Thumbnail slider to see more or fewer photos

Destination

.. Here is your decision point. first, you select the drive destination; then you can decide either to select the Pictures folder or create ONE subfolder under Pictures i.e. Lr Photos, RAW photos as your destination with the 'acceptance' that you will utilize Collections as your folder structure. Alternately, you can choose and existing subfolder or create a new subfolder s your destination for the import.

Other Tips when in the Library View: See toolbar above the Photo Filmstrip
Use 'E' to access Loupe View and 'G' for Grid View
XY Compare View   when you want to compare similar images for Sharpness
Survey View is another tool to compare several photos
Remember: right click this tool bar to edit or change what tools you want visible

Thursday, December 10

Background Matters (lesson learned: shoot the entire scene)

In a recent family cruise I wanted to capture a few 'posed' images of the grandchildren. So in the midst of many guests walking around and through my setup, I asked everyone to line up in front of a 'blank' wall. Oops! I concentrated solely on the subject I was trying to capture and not the entire scene - foreground, subject and background. Lesson learned! So what did I learn? Two things: Set up the whole scene and Check the Background. My options: blur the background in Lightroom, crop out the distracting background, maybe remove the background from the photo and insert a plain background.

Wednesday, December 9

FCCP: #2 Lightroom Learning Series 2015 - The Library Module (Part 2)

Jeff continues his review of the Lightroom Learning Series 2015 - the Library (right Panel discussion) called Part 2. 

Now after the photos have been imported into Lightroom either directly from the camera, SD card or  from a folder and/or location on your drive (see
 How to Import Photos into Lightroom), we can now engage the right panel. Below I will share key highlights/tips shared.

Highlights:

.. the Histogam should be open all the times (contains basic image information)
.. Quick Develop is a minimized Develop Module for 'quick' processing and fast Develop adjustments through set adjustments vs. sliders
.. Quick Develop adjustments are saved and displayed in the Develop Module
.. any changes made can be quickly reversed using CTRL or CMD Z
.. Keywording is a key organization features. Every photo contain some minumum number of Keywords to allow you to find that photo
.. Keyword suggestions are the 9 most used Keywords
.. Metadata contains information that is automatically collected by your camera and assigned to each specific photo, called EXIF data
.. consider adding Title and Caption text information for advanced text searches 

For those who prefer visually seeing the features Jeff shared, check out the short video Library Right Panel Display and Navigation

Filters: the real organization power within Lightroom rests within Filters. When in Grid view, you will see several filters at the top of the view window: Text (fully searchable text of Keywords and EXIF data), Atributes (Flag, Rating Color, Metadata (customizable columns and search elements) and None (Finding Photos Using Filters. 
Adobe offers a short video on Using Filters to Quickly Find Photos.

Note: as with any tutorial or YouTube, each author has their own style and approach. You should do as I do and use these resources for information and understanding and then determine what works best for you.

Tuesday, December 8

Framing: a Composition Technique

Framing is the technique of drawing attention to the subject of your image by blocking other parts of the image with something in the scene. Using framing in composition: 

1. gives the photo context (can tell you something about the place you are by the architecture, foliage, etc.).

2. gives images a sense of depth and layers (puts something in the foreground which adds an extra dimension to the shot).
3. leads the eye towards your main focal point (can not only draw the eye into a picture but that it keeps it there longer)
4. intrigues the viewer (can leave viewer wondering what is behind your frame).

Here is a site with framing examples:  Framing - Photography Composition 

Framing is simply using other objects in your photograph to frame the main subject. This is probably one of the easier composition techniques in photography. Framing brings more depth to the picture and a better focus on what the main subject is.

The benefits of framing pictures include:
1. giving the photo context (framing a scene with an archway can tell you something about the place you are by the architecture of the archway)
2. giving images a sense of depth and layers (in essence framing a shot generally puts something in the foreground which adds an extra dimension to the shot).
3. leading the eye towards your main focal point (‘frames’ can draw the viewer into the picture just by their shape and keep the viewer's attention there longer).
4. intriguing your viewer (Sometimes it’s what you can’t see in an image that draws you into it as much as (if not more than) what you can see in the picture. Clever framing that leaves those viewing your image wondering a little or imagining what is behind your frame can be quite effective (get it wrong and it can also be quite annoying!).

Sunday, December 6

iPhone Photo versus A6000 Photo

I had a great photo shoot with the FCCP group at the Clearwater Library roof for a sunset opportunity. I have been always pleased with the quality of the iPhone so I decided to shoot (almost) similar photos with both 'cameras'. The first is the iPhone and the second (right hand image) was taken with the A6000 with some Lightroom post-processing. (see 10 Quick Tips for Better Photos with the iPhone)

  

Initial Conclusion: Sharpness and Clarity much better with A6000. But the lesson is always keep your mobile phone with you always. Remember "the best camera is the one you have with you".

Tuesday, December 1

FCCP: #2 Lightroom Learning Series 2015 - The Library Module

This week's meeting (Nov. 30th) introduced the first of Lightroom's Modules called the Library Module. 

Modules Overview: Adobe initially started with a set of core tools in Lightroom. Over years, it has been increasing the number of modules and enhancing their functionality with each new version. Each module went through a number of significant changes as well – existing tools have been enhanced and new tools have been introduced. Starting with Series 2 (this DIY Meetup event) Jeff will be reviewing each Module in more detail.


The Library Module is one of two core Modules users will be spending the most time in. The Library Module is there to help you organize and manage photographs. Everything you need to find, import, sort and organize photographs is here. Navigation options are located on the left-side panel. This panel grants access to all images within the current Catalog. You can also choose to browse them by source Folder or Collection. You can publish your images to online services with the help of “Publish Services” tab at the bottom of the left-side panel.


In the left Panel we have at our disposal multiple tools (Library Module - Left Panel) including: Navigator, Catalog Tab, Folder Tab, Collections Tab, Publish Services Tab, and the Import and Export tabs.

The meeting's full discussion, questions and insight of the Library Panel cannot be adequately captured here, and I strongly recommend that members and guests attend the Monday night meetings. I will offer below some of the key tips shared at the meeting and suggest you also visit the links highlighted in this Event description for more information.


Jeff's Tips:
1. Keep the Navigator open at all times (if you hover the film strip at the bottom, the Navigator window will change)
2. In the Navigator, use the 1:1 selection option when doing critical work in the Develop Module (for ease, Jeff also suggests using 2:1 in the drop-down/twirl)
3. In the Panel right-click and be sure 'Solo Mode' is enabled
4. Create and use one Catalog ... did I say ONE catalog!
5. Take advantage of and use Collections versus Folder-in-Folder organizing (Note: Collections allow placement of photo(s) in multiple grouping for improved locating ability (i.e. a photo of my Grandson can be placed in Collection named Family, Robbie, Disney, Vacations, etc) without requiring duplicate copies of that same photo in similarly named folders)
6. Explore and utilize Quick Collections and Smart Collections for quick, easy and productive organizing
7. In Lr CC 2015, Adobe introduced Collections Search - excellent!
8. Need Shortcuts? use keyboard CTRL + / or Command + / (when in a specific Module) and launch shortcut tips for the active module
9. Tim shared a link on the FCCP website where you can download PDF for Keyboard Shortcuts

More Collections 
Kelby - How I Use Lightroom Collections
Digital Photography School - 8 Things to Know About Collections 

Sony A6000 Resources

Sony Support Page Useful Info
http://www.sony.co.in/support/product/ILCE-6000?cid=gwt:pdp:support

Sony Download Page (slight duplication of above)
http://esupport.sony.com/US/p/model-home.pl?mdl=ILCE6000&LOC=3#/downloadTab

Sony Help Guide
https://docs.sony.com/release/ILCE-6000_HelpGuide_EN.pdf

A6000 Camera Settings Guide
http://www.sony.net/Products/di/common/images/products/qb9a/ILCE-6000_4DFOCUS_Camera_Settings_Guide.pdf

Link to A6000 Friedman Book
https://www.dropbox.com/s/1pb0oqwo483mi4c/A6000_v2.0%20Friedman.pdf?dl=0

A6000 Help Guide (UK)
http://www.sony.co.uk/support/emanual/ILCE-6000/HG/EN/index.html

Tuesday, November 24

FCCP: #1 Learning Lightroom Nov 2015 Series - Preferences

This week's (Nov 23rd) meeting was the start of Jeff's Learning Lightroom Series could be titled 'What you need to know about Lightroom Preferences'. Jeff shared insight into all of the Lightroom preference settings, how they are configured, and why. We know Lightroom is a powerful tool, but like any tool, how you use it makes all the difference. Tweaking just a couple things can either make it lightning fast, or have you clock watching. Many of the tips shared as well as the two resources provided in the links below can help to further understand the options a bit better.

Lots of good information, many "I didn't know that" tips, and great insight into the 'why and how' Lightroom thinks. Two of my key take-aways were 1) in the second Preferences tab named 'Presets', several Restore options are available to use if and when Lightroom acts crazy before you may need to uninstall and reinstall the application. Also, the 'Interface' Tab to me is a tweaking tool that essentially allows you to personalize how you like Lightroom o look for you. 

Tips for Setting Up Your Lightroom Preferences provides an overview of most of the Lithroom preferences. While the short 10 minute video Important Lightroom Preferences and Catalog Settings offers a demo of Jeff's instruction.

Tuesday, November 17

Ten (10) Common Composition Mistakes

Here are ten composition mistakes we all have made at some time. It is a good reminder and can be made a part of your mental pre-shoot checklist to help with composition. The mistakes we all make relative to composition are:

... Subject becomes the center of the frame

... Subject is too small in the frame
... Nothing in the foreground
... Always shooting from a standing or staight on position
... Capturing distracting backgrounds
... Poor depth of field
... Sloping horizons
... Blurred images
... No focal point
... Not knowing the camera's controls and settings

FCCP: The Develop Module - A Review

(11/16) Monday night's meeting was a final review of the Lightroom series with emphasis on the Develop module. Included was an in-depth, step by step demonstration of all the tools available to extract the detail from a RAW image and convert that so-so photo into a 4 or 5 Star 'Keeper'. Members were able to see how all the available tools work together in a non-destructive way as Jeff walked us through the Tools of the Develop module.  My key take-aways from the meeting were:

... Make the Histogram my friend (to understand and adjust for 'blown out' whites and blacks)
... Take a minimum of three (3) bracketed photos (to allow processing options for HDR and/or ETTR (expose to the right)
... Don't avoid using 'Auto' in the Tone tool (this can provide positive photo enhancements, and can be adjusted afterwards)
... Always check and correct my horizon (crooked horizon is a no-no)
... Take advantage of and add a little Dehaze (in the Effects tool)
... When Sharpening - select an area of detail and adjust (detail not usually required for skies)
... Check for and use Camera calibration and Lens correction
... Finish editing with an amount of Post-Crop Vignetting that is pleasing (to draw the viewer's eyes to the subject)
There are so many quality tools available in the Develop module, and the FCCP classes and the web offer an abundance of instruction. This week, however, I will prepare for the start of the Lightroom instruction series by Jeff beginning November 23rd at Suite 4K. In the meantime, I am going to review instruction on some of my 'weaker' areas:

+ Tips on using the Basic Panel

Friday, November 13

Test - Centering Two Photos

I am learning how to use code to place/post images side by side but centering those images in the post needs more study (bob)

Tuesday, November 10

FCCP: Workflow (post-processing) and Faux-HDR

Workflow Definition: An end-to-end system for working with digital images, from capture to delivery. In general, it is comprised of a series of inter-connected steps: camera setup and image capture, importing, post processing, rating and organizing, exporting, backing up and sharing ... to simplify and standardize how we enhance photos. 

(11/9) Jeff shared his workflow that provides an excellent model to develop one's own workflow. The overall steps included:

.. Import (incl: Collections, Keywords and Destination)
.. Review and Rate (incl: Stars and Flags and initial 'Remove')
.. Develop (incl: Basic, Detail and other Develop panels)
The workflow demo provided detailed review of all the editing/adjustments in the Develop Module. Now we know Lightroom is very flexible and everyone's work flow can and may be unique. An good review of many of the details discussed at the meeting are found in the Digital Editing Photo Workflow article. 

I was not able to record specific actions and discussion, but one of my favorite instructors is Anthony Morganti who shares his work flow in a 24 minute video The Develop Workflow ... a tutorial.

Jeff finished the evening with a short demo on what I call faux-HDR. (Now 'real' HDR typically requires at least three photographic images of the identical scene with one shot under exposed, one properly exposed and one over exposed and then intergrated into one full high dynamic range photo. Creating a faux-HDR requires only one 'slightly over-exposed' (see ETTR link below) photo. Using the features and sliders within the Develop Module, Jeff created a beautiful high dynamic range photo from a not so special landscape image. 
Here is an approach and steps of one approach using many of Jeff's techniques to achieve an HDR-like Image from a Single RAW File in Lightroom.

Technical Reading: Expose to the Right ETTR         

Nov 24th Update: 7 Ways to Save Time with Your Workflow in Lightroom

Sunday, November 8

Using Geometry and Reflections


Sunset photo walk in Clearwater on the water. Early morning setup, camera checkout. (Lessons) Look to use lines; use a low camera position; take advantage of reflections; take advantage of  telephoto lens wide to long ... and watch more experienced photographers. See Bridge

Be Prepared for the Unexpected.



Sunset is a few minutes away. I grab my camera, jump in the car, drive to the pier and run to the beach. I am ready to shoot the sunset and I turn the camera on - "Oh No! I left the SD card at home." I quickly reach into my pocket and grab my iPhone to capture the moment. Whew ... (Lessons: always have my camera ready - SD, battery charged and ... bring a backup - iPhone). 

Friday, November 6

Tarpon Springs Photo Walk


I have been to Tarpon Springs (the Sponge Docks) many times, but never really looked inside of the area - the docks, Main Street, the street activities. The FCCP Group met for a photo walk (street photography) to capture more than pictures, but to capture the soul of the community. (Lessons) Decide what the subject is, include lines and include non-distracting background and 'see and shoot' what others don't see.

FCCP: The Histogram

At several meetings this week, the subject of exposure was raised often. We see the histogram on our camera and we see the histogram in Lightroom. The 'buzzwords' I heard were 18% gray, 255 tones plus 0, clipping, blinkies, and more ... I tried to put it all together after I left the meetings (I even nodded affirmatively as Jeff was explaining the how and why), but when I arrived home ... my head was spinning a little. So using my trusted non-Apple computer and the web's search engines, I found two sources that reinforce for me the points Jeff shared. Click each link below, they provide a nice review.


Bottom line: the histogram is a graphical representation of pixels exposed in your image from (left) blacks or shadows to (right) highlights or bright areas. It is definitely an aid to help us get a more correct exposure of your photos ... is it 'perfect' - No, but it is much better than checking your image's exposure in your camera's LCD.

Friday, October 30

FCCP: Review - The Develop Module

This past Monday 10/19, Jeff completed the Map and Book modules and will review the Slideshow, Print and Web Modules on 10/26. Looking back, over 80% of the Lightroom Monday meetings have concentrated on where most Lightroom users focus - the Develop Module. Therefore, I am sharing an excellent three-part series on the Develop Module by Anthony Morganti (see link below) that reinforces Jeff's teachings. 

Also on Monday, Jeff will share his Post Process work flow (if you are like me you can't wait!). Interestingly, in Part Three of the Morganti series, the author takes a photo through the Develop Module and he shares his Post Process work flow. (disclaimer: Morganti's work flow is his own and by no means the only one). See Learning Lightroom by Anthony Morganti (see all three parts)

Friday, October 23

FCCP: How to Enhance Blue Skies

Monday 10/12, Jeff shared at our Lightroom meeting several options within Lightroom to enhance a blue sky in your photos, starting with temp, clarity, etc. in the Basic Panel. However, for fine tuning, we learned there are detailed adjustments available in the HSL Settings Panel. See Fine-tune colors in HSL for a description of Hue, Saturation and Luminance and Option 1 and Option 2 for steps to add life to a dull sky using the HSL sliders and Adjustment Brush. Remember, Jeff reminded us to take advantage of the 'Adjust Luminance' button (upper left on Luminance sub-panel) to enhance specific colors in photo by placing the button on the color needing enhancing and then moving your mouse up or down (which adjusts the related colors).  

Friday, October 16

FCCP: How to Take a Photo From Lightroom to Photoshop

Even if you typically use Lightroom to organize and process your photos it is likely that there will be times when you want or need to use Photoshop with one of your images. Fortunately, moving between the two is pretty simple once you know how it works. 

At last week's Monday Lightroom Meetup at Suite 4K, there were several questions about how one moves from Lightroom to Photoshop and back. Jeff did an excellent job in explaining how easy it is, but if you are like me, sometimes I need it in black and white. Check out this tutorial that highlights the key points Jeff shared.  


Wednesday, September 2

Improving Phone Photogrpahy

Check out the Mobile Photo page on the right column for a link and notes on how to a) Taking Sharp Photos, b) Composition Techniques and c) Night Photos ... using an iPhone (or other mobile phones native camera). Tips apply to general photography as well.

Thursday, August 27

How to Recover 'Deleted' Photos from SD Card

Have you ever inadvertently removed photos from your camera's SD Card? I did today. After a quick search of photo apps and tools I found an application called PhotoRec that allowed me to recover files. At first, the application appears 'techie' but follow the 12 steps in the link and there should be no problem. See How To Recover Pictures

Wednesday, August 26

FCCP Meeting August 26th ... 'Q&A'

... My key learnings - no projector, no photos and 2 hours of Jeff sharing +++
  • Aperture Priority most used setting for Pro's 
  • Q&A - "what about full manual?" ... maybe for using legacy glass with adapters
  • Shoot the moon ... it is a daylight shot so start with F11 > ISO 100 > 1/400 shutter
  • Wothwhile app: The Photographer's Ephemeris 
  • Mobile cameras improving fast. Check David Hume's blog 

Tuesday, August 25

FCCP Meeting August 24th the Lightroom Library Module'

... My main take-aways
  • Lightroom's strongest feature is DAM - Digital Asset Management ... Use It!
  • Lightroom Panels are best 'closed' ... right click panel and check Solo Mode
  • The Library module has Quick Develop - preset Develop Module adjustments - check it out
  • Make 'shortcuts' your friend - saves time and energy (also under Tools)
  • After importing photos to Lr, make a commitment to delete, keyword, rate photos
  • Keywords added to photos in Lightroom, can be 'read' in other non-Adobe applications like Zoner, Picasa. Upon export, under Metadata check 'Write Keywords as Lightroom Hierarchy'  
  • Keyword Sets offers quick option to keyword selection 
  • Very fast post process operation to narrow a photo shoot images to 'keepers' is to use Pick (P) or Reject (X) 
  • Want efficiency? Use the Spray Can (Painter Tool) for keywording, rating and more
  • Consider keeping the Histogram 'open' - very critical tool for all

Sunday, August 23

Better iPhone Camera Photos

I have to share this: Tap your screen on the iPhone and move the focus point to a different spot! I was taking a photo with my iPhone and the image was dark. I tapped a different area of the scene I was taking ... and all of a sudden, the image lightened up and I snapped the photo. Neat option for the iPhone. (FYI: I was taking a photo where a sunny window was making everyhing dark - so I tapped the sceen and move the focus point to another area and all was good. Try it!

Friday, August 21

What About iPhone Photography

I prefer not to manage multiple lenses during a shoot. Now, looking back at my photos, I realize the iPhone camera has captured quality photo moments I will cherish forever. Therefore, one part of my journey will be to explore and share ways to take advantage of my 'take-everywhere' camera. See http://iphonephotographyschool.com/. Also see my Pages (on the right column of Blog).

Monday, August 17

How to Get HDR Look in Lightroom

Loaded Landscapes offers Presets for HDR for Lightroom. They also provide in their discussion all the settings for the user to create that  'manual' preset. As a beginner, these settings provide a nice balance 'pop' for landscape impages. See http://loadedlandscapes.com/hdr-look-in-lightroom/

How to Easily Boost Blue Skies in Landscapes

Here are two options available to you to improve the blue sky in landscape photos. The two features are: using HSL Settings and using taking advantage of the Graduated Filter in Lightroom.
See: http://loadedlandscapes.com/boost-blue-sky-lightroom/

Monday, August 3

Back-Button Focusing

A beginner photographer (me) focuses by pressing the shutter release half way down, and takes the photo by fully pressing the shutter release. Back-button auto-focus is different: it separates the multi-functions of the shutter release into to buttons - a back button to set focus and the shutter release. Although it will take 2-3 weeks to accept the change ... it is worth the change. See What is Back Button Focusing? and How To Use AF-On / Back Button Autofocus

Thursday, July 16

The Masters' Words

Jay Maisel: From a film series on photographic 'Masters at the FCCP, these quotes are changing my approach: "Never say you are going back - Shoot It Now!" ... "Take photos of what others do not see" ... "if it doesn't move You, it won't move others" ... "Don't shoot to replicate, shoot to renovate" See Jay Maisal Better Photographs; Ten Things I Learned

Wednesday, July 15

Goin' Mirrorless - Sony A6000

I decided to add a second digital camera to my photography equipment a Sony A6000 mirror-less (currently own a Nikon D5100 with a Tamron 18-270 mm lens). Criteria/questions and conclusions reached were ...
?? Mega-pixels ... 24 mega-pixel will provide more than I need to allow crop and good resolution
?? Full Frame ... do I really need full frame with added cost of FF lens? APC sensor fine
?? Ratings ... great reviews and comparing (Google) "A6000 versus 'any Model' was +++ for features I need see A6000 vs. D5100
?? Price ... decent mid range cost MSRP $900, street about $600 for body - okay
?? Lens selection ... not a big issue, will find a 'all around' zoom (kits will do for now)
?? Viewfinder ... must have
?? Size & Weight ... keep it light and non-obtrusive to subjects

Monday, June 15

Going Mirrorless - Sony A6000

June 2015: After thorough review of photography websites and forums, I purchased the popular Sony A6000 mirrorless. I considered a full frame versus cropped frame sensor and decided based on price and image quality ratings, cropped frame sensor was right at this time. Some of the best information came from comparison reviews (as an example See A6000 vs. Mark 7 II)