LEARN PHOTOGRAPHY WITH PORTFOLIO REVIEWS #21: LIN


Hello Lin let’s get straight to your portfolio review first of all your first picture I really appreciate it’s such a cute shot and I really like how the I don’t know what kind of bird it is I know it’s not a chickadee but I’ll just call it that because I have absolutely absolutely terrible at bird names however you have the the bird eating what appears to be a seed and it’s an action shot even though the birds not moving it’s still an action shot it’s dynamic because you can tell that it’s it’s ready to fly off with that seed in its mouth very good of course technically the only trick is and this is very hard to deal with when it comes to snow is we have what’s called blown out highlights in the background snow is very difficult because whenever you expose properly for the body of an animal a person a bird the the animal is the priority and I always tell my photo workshop students that the background is less of a priority than the main subject so you have flawless exposure for the bird the bird’s eye is clear the the feathers are perfectly exposed so that yes oh you did that right the the only problem is a technical problem and it’s a limitation of any almost any camera is the blown out highlights now if you shoot in RAW which not everyone does but if you have a DSLR or a mirrorless style camera that allows for raw shooting you can actually rescue these blown on highlights usually by going to highlight adjustment and I’m using Adobe Lightroom cc but highlight adjustments are in every software pretty much and if we reduce highlights quite a bit then you’re going to be able to rescue the detail in these blown out areas now because this is a jpg photo that you sent me and I asked I asked for JPEGs doing this really doesn’t really affect the picture at all we can’t really rescue this area however if it’s a raw file then you usually can do a pretty good job of rescuing now whenever we reduce highlights like this this is called a global adjustment and that is a technical term meaning that if I reduce the highlights to sort of rescue this Bellona area it’s also going to be reducing the highlights throughout the entire picture space including the bird now maybe we don’t want that to happen maybe we love the exposure of the bird and we don’t want to adjust it at all that’s where we have the brush tool now the brush tool is a little bit advanced and it’s not in all editing software but a lot of the more popular editing software’s have the ability to brush on certain things now in the brush tool I’m just going to reset temperature and tint we should always reset everything before you start a new brush so what I would do is I would take highlights down all the way and what I’m going to do now is brush on a reduction of highlights and I’ll show you what that means here in a second now again you’re not going to see any difference because this is a JPEG file I’ll just show you by hovering over the blue dot as you can see everything that I brushed turns red now this is just a very simple way for the software to tell us where we’ve made our adjustments if this is a raw file we’d probably be able to rescue that now let me show you what happens if I go in reverse to see how what the difference is the nice thing about brushes is that you can actually adjust certain areas that will and you can adjust completely any way you want the parameters are I’m absolutely amazing all the things that you can do with a brush tool so we’re just going to ignore this and we’re going to delete this because it’s not really going to do anything however I just want to show you that because whenever we’re dealing with people who live in the north we have a lot of snow in the winter and it’s extremely difficult to deal with snow because it often becomes blown out and that’s where a raw photo raw capture comes in now the only other thing is I’d love to see the feet of the bird if possible next time and often tell people just to err on the side of a little bit too much space because if you feel that the pictures too wide and you lose the immediacy of the face the eyes then just crop in I’d prefer to see the feet of the bird if possible next time okay good work now I love this shot I have no idea where you’re photographing from but I must say this is a beautiful land if this is where you live what I would do here as well is probably give us more definition color wise in the flowing water so I would still be in my brush tool and I’m going to reset all of my parameters that I did from last time get everything to zero and with my brush I’m going to increase the size of the brush just a little bit more and I’m going to bring the temperature to blue now obviously the first thing or say whoa way too much blue yes I understand but this is simply for us to understand where we are painting the brush and we can fine-tune the bluish nough slider okay and interestingly we’re gonna add a little bit of tint as well to add a bit of green because often when you do them with ice and flowing water we also have it a little bit of green involved okay so let’s now fine-tune the amount of blue so we’re up temperature actually before that I want to show you if you hover over the blue dot we will be able to move you can see how I’m moving this around and this shows you exactly where we have we have made our adjustments okay so let’s reduce the blue to more realistic look and let’s do a before and after hopefully it’ll show us okay so this is your original that you gave me and well often what happens is water falls in the winter they have sort of a blah sort of yellow pinkish look which really doesn’t lend itself well to a cold winter’s day so what I tend to do is accentuate or what I feel should be the case is add blue now this is a little bit too much still so just back off I’m gonna back off the blue just a little bit and I’m probably gonna add a bit of saturation okay now you could debate the fact that that’s a little bit too unrealistic I think it’s it’s probably good there but the nice thing about color adding color or so even subtracting color is that a lot of a lot of times it’s purely subjective so I would say that this is quite possible as a realistic look for color I certainly like it better than then the yellowish miss of the original okay so the next thing is looking at the overall composition and I really love the V that you have going on here with these trees the muted color tones I think it’s just a fabulous picture I would tend to want to see a little bit more down at the bottom however that’s not really a deal-breaker so I think that you did welcome composition wise but maybe next time just widen it just a touch so I can see a little bit more down here okay sometimes I’m tempted to get rid of slightly defocused elements on the right or the left however in this case I think you did a good job at keeping these in it’s like acts as a framing element or framing device okay so again you can adjust the this any way you want and that’s the beauty of the brush tool so I feel that that’s probably good right there okay good let’s get to your next picture really like the the way this that the eyes are looking at the camera here really well done the lighting is perfect we have the nice blue of the shadow and the nice warmth of the sunlight I think it’s just really well done my only suggestion is I feel that it’s a little bit claustrophobic I’d love to see a little bit more space especially down here now I made I may also want to see the end of this antler so next time just give yourself a little bit more space and the beauty of photographing on the side of a bit wider than normal is that you can crop in later now the first argument is well I don’t want to crop in because then I’ll lose resolution well I understand that but cameras are getting so good these days that even cropping in by 20% you’re still never going to see any difference if you’ve printed out and hang it on a wall so give yourself a little bit more space and then you can crop in after that’s or or take two pictures of the same scene that’s even better okay good let’s get to your next shot now the first thing I thought of when I saw this picture is that the we may we may find may find that the tree is distracting but then I realized no the the tree is integral to this picture because it looks like the I don’t know is this a buffalo he’s sort of rubbing up against the tree maybe scratching his head and I think it’s fabulous and and it’s an action shot it’s dynamic and you have muted colors I think overall it’s just a gem of a picture my only concern and again this is the exact same thing as before is that we have blown out highlights so in this situation let’s go back to our light panel in this situation we could do a general what’s called the global highlight reduction so we’re gonna take the highlights down now again it doesn’t work because this is a JPEG photo but if you were shooting in RAW by reducing the highlights over the entire picture it’s a really quick and easy to get detail in the snow here and down here we’re not going to do this in this picture because it’s a JPEG but that just shows you the power of the highlights tool again if you didn’t want to reduce the highlights of this beautiful coat of fur on the on the Buffalo if indeed it is a Buffalo sorry I’m terrible with animal names then of course we would go into our brush tool we would reset all the parameters that we used before and we would increase our brush size and we’d go to highlights we’d reduce the highlights to a certain extent maybe 90 or 80 and we would paint on highlight reduction and this is the beauty of the brushes that you selectively only add paint the areas that need the highlight reduction or any reduction for that matter okay so that is probably a better solution than your global highlight adjustment because we want to retain the brightness of the of the the coat of the animal okay so that’s not going to really work right now so I’m just gonna bring the highlights back and but anyway really great shot a lot a lot of interesting drama in that picture so let’s get to your last shot and get rid of the film strip okay so I feel for this picture we just need to reduce the blacks so let’s go to our light find our blacks the blacks in your shot here is I feel it was just a little bit too muddy now when we reduce the blocks we increased drama let’s look at the before and let’s look at the after I feel that this is a snappier picture and it actually allows me to enjoy looking at the details of the eye and the beak a little bit more also I’d probably be tempted to crop in a little bit mmm mainly because I like to have less space behind the bird than in front something like that okay lovely work it was a great going through your photos Lynne here’s the filmstrip we just went through that one this one this one and this so it looks like you live in a lovely environment and really enjoyed going through your pictures thank you

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *