October 29, 2013
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From those wonderful people at Craft & Vision there is a new Lightroom ebook aimed at LR5 The previous edition for LR4 was invaluable and although LR hasn’t undergone the major changes it did from 3 to 4 if you have 5 buy this now
A Complete Guidebook to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
Lightroom 5 Unmasked is a resource like no other. This PDF is full of high-resolution screenshots, step-by-step instructions, and the tips, tricks and ideas that make digital darkroom work productive and more enjoyable.
At 356-pages Lightroom 5 Unmasked is 13 chapters deep, covering everything from an introduction to Lightroom and non-destructive editing to full discussions and detailed instructions of the Library and catalogs, to every tool in the Develop, Map, Book, Slideshow, Print, and Web Modules. Download the Table of Contents.
This massive eBook also includes an amazing collection of 69 Cases which provide context and insights on the smaller topics that often get overlooked (nine more cases than the previous edition). These additional insights put the tools and features into context, helping you learn and apply what you read along the way. Every module is covered in-depth, even third-party applications and plugins are tackled head-on. Lightroom-to-Photoshop integration is also included.
At about £12.50 for more than 350 pages it is a snip
Get your copy here
September 24, 2013
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One thing that has become clear from the years of teaching photography is that many, many people want to take pictures of flowers. They are beautiful, colourful, delicate and last only a short time and do not answer back, be difficult, require extensive walking and can be readily available. That said it got to a point on one of our more advanced courses when I realised that half the class were only photographing flowers that I had to ban them as a subject. It was not that I dislike pictures of flowers but just that once the techniques have been mastered the main challenge is finding beautiful blooms to photograph. The impact on the class was initially concern, what were they going to photograph but once they started looking they found many things that captured their interest.
This article on Lightstalking by Izabela Korwel explains some of the basics of flower photography. Check out Iza’s amazing macro photography on her blog,.
All of this article is useful, I would add that most zoom lenses that come as a basic kit with a dslr camera can close focus to about 8 inches and are great for macro/close focus work. If you want to explore this with your zoom lens put it in manual focus and set the focus ring to it’s minimum focus distance (usually when the ring is extended furthest out) then put the camera to your eye and move the camera backwards and forwards until something close comes in focus, this will be about 6 – 8 inches. Using manual focus with macro flower photography is a better way to work that auto focus because you get to decide what is in sharpest focus rather than the camera.
Here is the start of the article:
Flowers are the easy subjects to come by and to photograph, even close to home. You can go to local park or find a flower bed downtown or at the mall. You can visit a botanical garden, there is one in every major city. You can ask the neighbours if you can photograph in their garden. You can also just go the flower shop and buy potted or cut flowers, and set them up in your living room.
The easiest way, as I discovered this year, is to plant small flower garden in front of your house. Even for the sole purpose of having a photographic subject handy, they do not require that much work, especially if you choose the local wild flowers. The diversity in types and colors will help keeping you interested and returning often to add to the collection of images. Each day, the flowers will looks different, some will be already dying, and some will just start to bloom. There are new and different photos to be taken each and every day.
Click Here: How to Take Incredible Photographs of Flowers
February 13, 2013
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We have recently started our first Lightroom course and it is going really well. What we have learned from our students is that many, prior to the course, hadn’t realised the vast array of processing options available through this wonderful program. Lots of people assume it is good for sorting out a bit of exposure problems or to correct colour vagaries but have not comprehended how much improvement both technical and creative Lightroom offers. I have gathered here some tutorials available on line that you will find interesting. Often, because of the space available, the tips and tutorials are more a bit, ‘do this and you will improve your pictures’ whereas when we teach we explain how and why there will be an improvement. Understanding the process is important because it gives you much better creative control and that is what we all seek.
An old adage of photography is that you should try to create the image you want with the camera rather than relying on post-production. And that’s good advice. The less post you need to do on a photograph, the easier your life will be (as post-production throws up an extra set of challenges). But sometimes, for one reason or another, you might want to make your landscapes shots pop a little more by applying a little well-considered post production to them. Here are a few ways you add the drama you are looking for.
Play With the Blacks Slider – Lightroom has a convenient little slider called “Blacks” in develop mode that allows you to have more control over the contrast in your images. Dragging the slider to the right to increase your blacks will usually result in a slightly more dramatic image in landscapes owing to an increase in contrast. Be sure not to clip too much (you can see exactly how much clipping you’re doing by holding down the “option” key on a Mac or “alt” key on a PC as you use the slider with your mouse). For a great little video on using the black slider, check out this tutorial.
Click Here: 3 Easy Lightroom Adjustments to Add Drama to a Landscape
Adobe Lightroom 4 has some significant changes within its develop module that gives us photographers several new impressive tools when post-processing images. Adobe came out with a new image process version (2012) which is basically the image processing engine behind Lightroom and Photoshop’s Adobe Camera Raw plug-in. This new process version provides many significant updates, including more options when making local adjustments and the new highlights and shadows sliders (which essentially replaces the recovery slider in Lightroom 3). Because of these new powerful features in Lightroom 4 we can now, with much greater ease, recover those photos which we may have thought were unusable.
Tumihay the Hunter (before Lightroom 4 post-processing and then after) by Jacob Maentz
How to Import Photographs into Lightroom By Chase Guttman on Lightstalking
Before you can truly harness the power of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, the most essential thing you must know is how to import your digital photography files into a catalog. As mentioned in the previous tutorial, Lightroom is a modular based program where you can organize, develop, print, share and display your photography, among many other things. In order for Lightroom’s vast number of features to be useful to you, you must first import your images into a catalog so you can work on them. The importing process is done via the “import dialogue box.” There are two ways to quickly access the import dialogue box:
There are endless numbers of site offering advice as well as the excellent Lightstalking here are some of my favourites you might like to check out:
A Killer Collection of Adobe LightRoom Tutorials
January 31, 2013
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We are about to start our new course on Lightroom 4 (we have places, if you are interested please email). This is a fantastic program and one we use every day, it is invaluable if you shoot RAW for conversion purposes and a really great piece of library software to organise your images, I would be lost without it. There are a couple of ebooks we recommend from the Craft & Vision stable, we also like Craft & Vision very much, if you want to see all of their publications click on the box on the right of this page.
20 Great Techniques for Lightroom 4
Lightroom keeps changing, and most of us don’t have time to dig around under the hood to learn it all. Essential Development is no-holds-barred guidebook that can help you explore, modify, and dig deep into the Lightroom 4 tools you need to make your post-processing efforts more productive and produce the final images your portfolio deserves! The eBook is divided into 20 chapters, focused entirely on the Develop module, covering topics such as: Understanding The Histogram, Making White White, Beauty Retouching, Dodge & Burn for Beauty, Cross Processing, Achieving a Filmic Look, Image Toning, Tilt Shift, Effective Sharpening, and Correcting Lens Issues. Click on the pages above to buy at $5 (£3.
Lightroom 4 Unmasked
A Complete Guidebook to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
This one is a big ebook and costs a bit more $20 (£12.70) but this is a complete guide to Adobe Lightroom 4 and we know you’ll love diving into this beefy book. At 312 spreads this PDF is full of high-resolution screenshots, step-by-step instructions, and the tips, tricks and ideas that make digital darkroom work productive and more enjoyable. If you’re looking to learn Lightroom 4 and need a resource to help you do that quickly, or you’ve just upgraded and need to get up to speed, this is a great value. Click here to buy this and download it immediately
November 21, 2012
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I am regularly asked if we run a course on Lightroom and it is something we plan but if you can’t wait for our return from Australia to OSP towers you might want to buy this very cheap ebook and get started yourself. I have always been super impressed with Craft & Vision books and have bought just about everyone they put out. They are full of excellent technical detail, inspiring ideas and are beautifully illustrated.
LIGHTROOM 4 UNMASKED
This is a complete guide to Adobe Lightroom 4 and we know you’ll love diving into this beefy book. At 312 spreads this PDF is full of high-resolution screenshots, step-by-step instructions, and the tips, tricks and ideas that make digital darkroom work productive and more enjoyable. If you’re looking to learn Lightroom 4 and need a resource to help you do that quickly, or you’ve just upgraded and need to get up to speed, this is a great value.
This rather expansive ebook with 312 pages costs just £12 or $20, get further details and purchase here
October 15, 2012
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A week isn’t worth having unless I have time to visit some of my favourite sites on the web. One of these is by David du Chemin. David duChemin is a world & humanitarian assignment photographer, best-selling author, international workshop leader, and accidental founder of Craft & Vision. When not chasing adventure and looking for beauty, David is based in Vancouver, Canada.
This week I found an article he had written about Lightroom 4 and black an white conversions, here is a bit of what he says:
One of my favourite improvements in Lightroom 4 is the ability, in the graduated filter and the adjustment brush, to dial in colour temperature and tint……It’s worth remembering that in Lightroom you aren’t really working on a monochrome image. You’re working on a colour image with a monochrome filter on top. So moving the colour values around underneath that filter – either with temperature or with the channel mixer (Black and White Mix) – will change the tonal values you see in the resulting image. Different tonal values, different contrasts, and different visual mass – in other words, a different feel for the image, and new ways for us to hone our expression. Want more read on here
August 10, 2012
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What to look for when choosing a laptop computer for serious digital photo processing. by Andrew Darlow.……on Photo.net If you are in the market for a new laptop (a.k.a. notebook) computer, you are not alone. More photographers than ever are choosing laptops in addition to a desktop computer, or making a laptop computer their primary computer. A few reasons for making a laptop a primary computer are as follows: major processor performance boosts in recent years; decreased weight; increased storage capability; higher RAM limits; better screens and enough specs and features to make most photographers’ head spin. Plus, due to the nearly constant updates to applications, security patches, and applications like iTunes, it’s often just easier to use the same computer at home, in the studio and when traveling. Another option, thanks to recent advances, is to keep a high-powered laptop or desktop at home, while a lightweight, yet still powerful machine is taken on the road for card downloads, backups, image viewing, etc……READ more of this extensive article here
You might also like to check out the less specific for photographers, Laptop Review site
July 12, 2012
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In some ways photographing in black and white has never been easier. In the past the usual places that would develop your films such as chemists and other high street stores made a real hash of black and white. Now with digital technology you can shoot black and white or monochrome in your camera although my preference is always to shoot RAW, and hence colour and make the conversion in the computer, I use Lightroom as my preferred RAW processing program. If you want to see the image in black and white on the camera monitor but still record in RAW many cameras do allow this. On Canon cameras you can go into Picture Style and select monochrome but in the menu under Quality select RAW. I am sure it must be possible with Nikon’s I just don’t know how to do it being a Canon user.
The subject matter for black and white can be as varied as you want but often urban environments give a bit extra when shot in monochrome. This article on the Lightstalking website expresses that and has lots of examples.
Heading out with a camera in the city can be a heap of fun. Street scenes and architecture can produce some great scenes for photographers and when you shoot with black and white in mind, the results can be very powerful. We think these shots show what we mean. Share your own in the comments!
Here is a taste of what is on offer
Click Here: 27 Powerful Street and City Scenes in Black and White
March 15, 2012
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I use Lightroom every day, I must say that in most areas it is a joy. Understanding how the software works can be a bit confusing though as bits sometimes will not do what you expect. As such I am in the process of writing a course on the use of Lightroom and hope to have it ready for next term. In the meantime this excellent explanation by Chase Guttman over on Lightroom will help to explain one of the main features, the use of modules.
“Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is an essential component of any digital photographer’s toolbox. As with all post-processing software, Lightroom is a program that photographer’s can use to improve and organize their visual art. Yet, Lightroom is unique in many ways. Unlike other popular post-processing software, Lightroom is a modular program and has the advantage of non-destructive digital editing (in other words, the original files are never altered within the program). The program is designed in such a way, so that each module found in Lightroom, can be used to accomplish different tasks in an efficient manner.
Another unique feature of Lightroom is that the software is designed to handle many images at once, so it’s equipped to deal with the fast paced workflow of many digital photographers. This is due to the fact that with Lightroom, your images are separated into different catalogs, where Lightroom handles only a specific set of images at one time.
Finally, with less of a learning curve than Photoshop, Lightroom is the best choice for amateur photographers who are just starting with post-processing.”.…MORE
February 15, 2012
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I am just in the process of writing a new course based on the use of Lightroom. As with all our courses it will feature the most useful aspects to photographers, highlighting those functions that make life easier and better. All software can do more than we ever possibly need unless our interests are specific and well…extreme. The new course based on Lightroom 3 should be ready for the new term after Easter. You will understand my consternation at the imminent arrival of Lightroom 4. It is now available as a free download in beta form. This means it is at testing stage and Adobe make it available for use with the understanding it may have bugs that need ironing out and tweaks to make it even better. These are determined by testing the beta version by working professionals. I have had a good look at 4 and it’s basic functions and way of working is not dissimilar to 3 so I am relieved all the work I have already done on the proposed course is not wasted.
You can download this version here
new book module in LR4
Lightroom 4 beta builds on the vision of the very first Lightroom beta. From day 1, Lightroom was designed for photographers and by photographers to help them focus on what they love—the art and craft of photography. Lightroom provides photographers with an elegant and efficient way to work with their growing digital image collections, bring out the best in their images, and make an impact from raw capture to creative output, all while maintaining the highest possible quality each step of the way.
“For the development of this latest release, we’ve focused on further maximizing image quality and expanding output options. New tools let you extract more detail from highlights and shadows, make a wider range of targeted adjustments, and easily share your images and video clips on social media and photo sharing sites.
New Features in Lightroom 4 Beta
- Highlight and shadow recovery brings out all the detail that your camera captures in dark shadows and bright highlights.
- Photo book creation with easy-to-use elegant templates.
- Location-based organization lets you find and group images by location, assign locations to images, and display data from GPS-enabled cameras.
- White balance brush to refine and adjust white balance in specific areas of your images.
- Additional local editing controls let you adjust noise reduction and remove moiré in targeted areas of your images.
- Extended video support for organizing, viewing, and making adjustments and edits to video clips.
- Easy video publishing lets you edit and share video clips on Facebook and Flickr®.
- Soft proofing to preview how an image will look when printed with color-managed printers.
- Email directly from Lightroom using the email account of your choice.