Tag Archives: workflow

Photographing the Heather in the Peak District

It’s Friday again and I’ve managed two days photography this week. The reason, besides the weather not being too bad, is that the heather is out.

Both shoots were in the afternoon and both in the Peak District. The first was Bamford Edge where I captured this shot. The other was near to Surprise View, but you will need to wait to see those images.

Before I explain a little about how I captured this image I should mention the accompanying video.

Landscape Photo Editing Workflow – The Miniseries

With my latest book in proofreading, I decided to take advantage and publish a video showing my editing workflow. To do this I used another image from the same evening shoot as this one. But rather than publish a long video which may be hard to watch, I’ve broken it into a small series.

There will be four videos in total:

  1. Assessing the image.
  2. RAW Processing
  3. Nik Processing
  4. Special Effects

I’ve already released the first two and I’m planning to do the other two next week.

If you want to watch the videos, here’s a link to the playlist on YouTube. And if you haven’t already, don’t forget to subscribe to my channel.

Friday Image No.225

I shot the image for this post around 5-10 minutes after sunset and up until this point, I had been struggling. Because we were facing towards the sun and the contrast was high, most of my shots had a harsh look that I didn’t like. It was only once the sun had set below the horizon that I was able to capture the dynamic range and open the shadows. Even then I needed to use a graduated ND filter (0.9 Soft) on the sky.

Another advantage of waiting until after sunset (besides lowering the contrast range) is that the heather glows and comes to life. This isn’t always the case, but if you are facing towards the stronger light, it works well. Turn away from the light and the heather looks grey and lifeless.

In terms of the shot, this is a single image captured using RAW on the Fuji X-T3. I used a 0.9 Soft Kase Grad filter as mentioned. I also had the camera mounted on a tripod and used a cable release. The image I used for the video is like this one and I used the same approach if you want to know more.

I hope you like the image and videos and have a great weekend.

Lightroom Video Published

It appears that quite a number of you want to know more about working with Lightroom and what tips might help save you some time. With this in mind I put together this short 10-minute video demonstrating a few points including History, Snapshots and Integration with Photoshop. These may not be the most exciting features but they could save you a lot of time. Probably much more than the 10 minutes it takes to watch the video.

As always, requests for future video topics are gratefully received.

Processing the Wind Farm Image

The other week I published an image similar to this.

Finished wind farm image
Finished wind farm image

Well for those who are interested (and quite a few people emailed me), here is the starting image.

Starting image of the wind farm prior to any adjustment
Starting image of the wind farm prior to any adjustment

If you want to know the processing steps I posted the tutorial on Lenscraft. Here’s the link.

https://lenscraft.co.uk/processing-wind-farm-photograph/

Creating a Lightweight Photoshop Workflow

Creating a Lightweight Photoshop Workflow

Rough seas, Norway, March 2012
Copyright: Robin Whalley 2012
Contact: robin@lenscraft.co.uk

Last night I was the guest speaker at a Camera Club; something that I like to do a number of times each year in order to share my knowledge, but also to pick up information from others. The event went well and the presentation I delivered was entirely new, not only in content but in approach. The real innovation for the session was that I demonstrated how I use Photoshop to craft my images.

What became apparent from talking to people after the event was that my workflow in Photoshop was quite minimal yet achieved a lot. You see I have standardised my approach to be adequate for around 95% of my images and most of my changes can be applied in just a few minutes. Sure some of the better images I will spend longer on, but only if the additional effort is justified.

Here then is my approach:

  • Clean up the image by removing dust spots etc on a new empty layer. I do however try to keep my sensor clean by using an Arctic Butterfly brush so that any cleanup work is minimal.
  • Use a Curves adjustment layer to adjust brightness
  • Use a curves adjustment layer to adjust contract
  • Use a saturation layer to adjust saturation
  • Add a new empty layer and stroke the image to create a frame

Whilst I didn’t demonstrate it last night I have created an action in Photoshop to automate the addition of the above layers so that all I need do is activate the action using Ctrl-F3 (which is the key combination I have assigned).

Consider also that all my adjustments are on layers which give rise to a number of benefits:

  • I can turn the layer on or off to hide the effect
  • I can adjust the opacity of the layer to control how strong its effect is on the image
  • Each layer has a blending mode that you can use to make further enhancements
  • Each layer has a layer mask attached to it which I can use to target the adjustment onto a specific area of the image

Once I am happy with the image I create a new consolidated version from all the layers by pressing Shift-Ctrl-Alt-E. I then sharpen this for output e.g. for paper or for the screen. My finished image is then saved as a PSD file with all the layers remaining in place. Again this gives rise to timesaving benefits:

  • Each time I output the image to new media I can create a version of the image with the correct level of sharpening and simply turn off the other layers
  • I can create modified versions of the same image e.g. versions with and without the frame
  • If in a couple of weeks I decide I was a little heavy handed with one of the adjustments e.g. saturation, I can simply adjust the opacity of the relevant layer to control the effect
  • If I later decide to work on the image further I have all my earlier layers already in place and ready to enhance further

By following my approach I find that I minimise the total time I spend on each image whilst achieving good results.

Copyright: Robin Whalley 2012 www.thelightweightphotographer.com
See more of my work at www.lenscraft.co.uk