Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Category Archives: Photoshop

Top Ten Tips for Posing Couples

If you are an aspiring wedding photographer or just like taking pictures of couples this article could be valuable to you, it talks a bit of sense and of course a bit of dogma but is well worth the read. You might also think about our Portrait course which spends time talking about posing and making your subjects feel comfortable so that you get the best images.

Top Ten Tips for Posing | Professional Photography Blog | Pictage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

dreams part 2

These are really great, by Michal Giedrojc from Poland, they will make you wonder and ask why, from his photographyserved page

Series of portraits –photo montage where author puts people in unreal places. Situation presented in photographs have never happened and were only created by imagination and dreams. Person is isolated from reality with the imaginary world around him. The author freely transposes a person between two different worlds as if one tried to adapt to them.

Adobe makes photography program price permanent, unveils 14 new apps

You cannot buy Photoshop now, for some time it has only been available as a subscription program. This means you pay about £9 a month and get the full version of Photoshop and the full version of Lightroom. These are updated when newer versions are available. You can still but Photoshop Elements as a stand alone program and currently the same is the case for Lightroom. For about a year Adobe have been running a special offer, the £9 saying the full price might be double that when the offer closed. well now they have back tracked and the full price will be £9, until they put it up anyway. If you need the full program and use LR this is a good deal but for many people Elements is more than sufficient for their needs.

 

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Here is what Digital Camera World say on the  matter

As well as announcing updates to 14 desktop apps in its Creative Cloud suite, Adobe has confirmed that its photography program, which was previously billed as a special offer, will be a permanent feature.

The plan includes access to the Photoshop CC and Lightroom desktop applications with free upgrades when they are available, mobile and web apps, 20 GB of cloud storage and a Behance ProSite for £8.78/US$9.99/AU$9.99 per month when you sign up for a one-year plan

New to Photoshop CC: Blur Gallery

Like Adobe’s other desktop apps, Photoshop CC is being updated with a host of new or refreshed features including the addition of two new motion blur filters in the Blur Gallery.

Path Blur allows movement blur to be added along a line (path) and controlled using an on-screen slider around a pin, like the other filters in the Gallery. The degree and location of the blur can be further controlled by adding pins with zero blur.

Spin blur is designed to add a sense of movement to wheels and disks in images. This size of the area affected as well as the stroke length and centre position can all be adjusted along with the intensity of the blur.

Both blur filters are non-destructive and their effect can be undone at any time.

SEE MORE: Motion Blur – how to use layers, masks and filters to create a sense of speed

New to Photoshop CC: Select by focus

Adobe has also added a new way to make selections, Focus Mask, which is ideally suited for use with images that have a sharp subject against a blurred background.

Once Focus Mask is active, it’s just a question of painting over the target area with the cursor and Photoshop will select the sharp areas.

The range of the selection can be adjusted and the refine edge controls are available to ensure that the correct area is selected.

SEE MORE: Shallow depth of field – how to fake it using Photoshop filters and masks

New to Photoshop CC: Heightened awareness

Photoshop CC’s Content-Aware technology has been improved with a colour match algorithm for better results when using features such as the Patch tool.

Rather than just blurring the edges of the cloned section, the surrounding tint is analysed and the element is merged.

See the full article here

Karen Knorr

Strange that I had not heard of Karen Knorr before as she is certainly celebrated. Serious stuff often beautifully crafted with purpose and intent. This series of images from India had her using large format film cameras to capture the sumptuous palaces in Rajasthan and then photographing animals in nearby zoos and digitally combining the images. Can you see the join? Fun and beautiful. Her website has a number of other series of works worth investigating

The best advice for a photography beginner

“The book “On Being a Photographer” by Magnum Photographer David Hurn and Bill Jay (this only seems to be available as a Kindle download unless you are prepared to spend about £140 for a paperback! Worth buying the Kindle)  helped me more than any other book about photography I have read. One of the main things I learned is the importance of picking a project rather than just walking around looking for pictures. And it is important that the subject matter you choose be continuosly accessible. This translates for most people into picking a subject close to home. It is harder photographing your own day to day life. You don’t need exotic places — and often they are deterrent because the photographer does not know the exotic place well enough to capture its essence. Showing what is beautiful (or not beautiful) in your day-to-day environment is infinitely more interesting.

Decide on one or two qualities that you will search for. Perhaps that quality is “symetry”. Find all the photographs that use symetry as a dominate quality. Churches are often symetrical. People can be symetrical. The ocean can be symetrical. A car can be symetrical. So, spend a day just looking for this one quality. That is alot cheaper than spending money on taking pictures, at first!

When you use your camera, try to emulate or use this quality of “symetry”. After looking at symetrical objects in magazines, go outside and find an object, like a sign or a newspaper rack or a telephone, or an apple, and make a symetrical photograph of it.

 

Is that exciting? Nope. But either is playing on a piano with 1 note. But now you really know where that 1 note is. You can pull it out and use it anytime you need to in the future.

I took a course in photography for 3 weeks. This is how I learned. We were given assignments like: “shadows”, “near and far”. We did about 5 different qualities. As a result, I was somewhat equipped to do assignments for the college newspaper and I did PR for the college as well. Therefore, I became professionally almost immediately. All I knew was 4-5 qualities. But I knew the qualities that would help me as a beginning professional, and I didn’t fail.

Decide what it is you like in life. Having a *passion* for old motorbikes, landscapes, flowers … is the real driver to making good photos. I find it almost impossible to shoot good images of things I have no interest in, but I can happlily spend a whole day photographing what I love.

I suggest to you that you would concentrate on one quality of a good photograph at a time. Spend a week just looking for this one quality, and take about 40 pictures of things or events that have this one quality. A good picture usually has 4-5 good qualities. However, there may be 100 good qualities out there to choose from. The rule of 1/3rds is one quality.

Another, is “diagonals”.

Another quality is “near and far”.

Another quality is “shadows”.

The way I started, my first picture was of stairs. I pictured the stairs diagonally across my frame. And with that, I learned the first quality. You must spend one week on your assignement to learn about each quality. Then after a month or so, you can combine qualities.”

My advice echoes this, to get better at photography always consider composition, you could even take our composition course and practise one feature at a time, spend hours or even days just looking for and photographing using one compositional device like rule of thirds. When you start seeing images even when you do not have a camera with you then you are on the right road

The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera”
Dorethea Lange

Working to projects rather than just aimlessly wandering around with a camera sharpens your eye, helps you see better and if you come across the slim paper back “On Being a Photographer” by Bill Jay and David Hurn snap it up

Jennifer in paradise: the story of the first Photoshopped image

Jennifer in Paradise.tif – the first photoshopped picture Brothers Knoll sent over their original Je

From The Guardian

It hardly looks like an image that shook the world. But this photograph, taken in 1987 by John Knoll, could be as central to the modern visual vernacular as Eadweard Muybridge’s shots of galloping horses or the first use of perspective.

Its subject is Knoll’s then-girlfriend Jennifer, topless on the beach inBora Bora, gazing out at To’opua island. The young couple worked together at Industrial Light & Magic, Lucasfilm’s special-effects company, and were enjoying some well-earned R&R after working 70-hour weeks on the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Looking back, Jennifer says: “It was a truly magical time for us. My husband actually proposed to me later on in the day, probably just after that photo.” Little wonder that John would name the photo Jennifer in Paradise.

But the image was to become much more than a record of a perfect moment. At ILM, Knoll had encountered a cutting-edge piece of hardware known as the Pixar Image Computer, one of the first that could be used to manipulate images. “I thought it was amazing,” he says. “The fact that you could take an image from film, scan it in and turn it into digits and then manipulate those numbers and put it back out on to piece of film – it meant that there was literally no limit to what you could do to it in the middle.”

The Pixar machine cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and the image-processing software was so complex it required a specially trained operator. So Knoll was somewhat taken aback when he visited his brother Thomas, who was reading for a doctorate in computer vision at the University of Michigan, and discovered that he’d developed some similar software that could run on a much cheaper Macintosh Plus. Knoll began to chivvy his brother into pushing the application further. “It was really just a hobby at first,” he says, “but I kept asking him to add more features.”  It is worth reading the full article and watching the video to see just how little has changed from the very first version, go here to do so

John Wilhelm is a photoholic

John is clearly a man with a vision, a vision that likes to mess with your head.

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There is one thing of importance in my life (of course after my family, friends and regular job): Everything connected to photography and photoshopping. I’m not a professional but I’ve got a professional attitude and I think I’m able to deliver professional work with professional reliability. John Wilhelm…..

crocs

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I found out about John from Lightstalking, that ever interesting site from down under.

Often in photography, people concern themselves with realism and accurate portrayals of scenes and there is obviously a big place for that. But sometimes, it’s nice to be taken into pure fantasy by a photographer with a huge imagination and no inhibitions.

John Wilhelm is a photographer with a very playful mind and a great grasp of using Photoshop to share his fantastic ideas. Check out some of these fantastic manipulations….more

cow

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see more of John’s work here

The 6 best Photoshop layers any photographer can use

Photoshop has many types of layers and adjustment layers available, but there are six that you’ll find you need to use again and again.

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The 6 best Photoshop layers any photographer can use

Learning how Photoshop layers should be used may seem a little daunting for beginners, but once you’ve got to grips with them, you’ll find they play a part in the creative process of almost every image you make. Find out what they are here on Digital Camera World

Best monitor for photo editing: 4 top models tested and rated

In class, any of the classes I teach, eventually the question comes up, why do my prints not look like what I see on screen. Well there are a number of reasons but the first is that professionals use monitors designed for graphic purposes. We don’t use the default that came with the computer we bought, and often the monitor costs as much as the computer. We need to be able to calibrate our monitors so that they look like other professional outfits who use professional monitors, these should be your local high street printer, the digital book publisher you use and the bespoke lab you prefer. We usually recommend looking at Colour Confidence as a start point

What is the best monitor for photo editing? Colour-accurate monitors offer true-to-life reproduction of photographic images, but price and performance varies. Digital Camera World tested four of the top models available to see which monitor is best for photographers.

Best monitor for photo editing: 01 Eizo ColorEdge CG243W

Eizo Monitor

Price: £1,200
Buy it: http://www.eizo.co.uk
This thoughtfully laid-out monitor has a versatile swivelling screen, which makes fitting it into your workspace a doddle, even with the (included) hood in place.

The menus are sensibly laid out, with icons popping up above the buttons so you always know what to press, even in a darkened studio.

The included calibration software enables you to build an ICC profile quickly, and the 1920×1200-pixel display offers high-end reproduction, but this doesn’t come cheap and, at 24 inches, this is the smallest monitor on test.

Pros: A high-end, flexible monitor with rich, consistent colours
Cons: Only 24 inches; functional rather than stylish design; pricey

Score: 88%

See the other recommended at Digital Camera World here

Adobe hack: At least 38 million accounts breached

The BBC is reporting a problem with Adobe. “It had previously revealed that the source code for its Acrobat PDF document-editing software and ColdFusion web application creation products had also been illegally accessed.”

Adobe has confirmed that a recent cyber-attack compromised many more customer accounts than first reported.

The software-maker said that it now believed usernames and encrypted passwords had been stolen from about 38 million of its active users.

It added that the attackers had also accessed details from an unspecified number of accounts that had been unused for two or more years.

The firm had originally said 2.9 million accounts had been affected.

Adobe has also announced that the hackers stole parts of the source code to Photoshop, its popular picture-editing program.

Read the full article here

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