For a while now, I’ve been itching to begin experimenting with incorporating the Photomatix software into my workflow. One bright sunny Michigan morning, I had the opportunity to do just that. I found myself driving through downtown Port Huron after a networking event, my Canon 70D camera, 18-35mm F1.8 Sigma Lens, and tripod conveniently nestled in the passenger seat next to me. As I crossed over the downtown bridge, I decided that it was the perfect time to take some bracketed shots. The morning was clear and the sun was bright. No better time … [Read more...] about Exploring A Port Huron Scene With Photomatix
It is that time of year again. NAB is just around the corner. My inbox and social media have already been flooded with official announcements and "unofficial" leaks. What am I excited to see on the show floor? There is a lot to cover, so let's dive in. Lytro Cinema — Lytro's light field cameras caused quite a stir in the photography community a while back. And, while the consumer market was not ready for the Illium, Lytro has not been idle. I knew they had VR projects in the pipeline, but I did not see Lytro Cinema coming. … [Read more...] about What to Look For At NAB 2016
Did you see the NIK software announcement from Google? Truth be told, I’ve always wanted to play with and use NIK software but it was never an expense I was willing to part with. Like many of us, funds are limited and I couldn’t justify buying something when I need a new camera body first. When a friend shared with me the news from Google that NIK software was released for free, I was excited. I downloaded it right away and then came across some negative aspects of the free download. Good news, yes the software is indeed free. It’s the same … [Read more...] about Google NIK Collection: Good News & Bad News
Your footage does not exist until it exists in at least two other places than the source. Then, and only then, should you reuse source media. The adage above is as close to a truism as one can find in digital video production. At the start of my production career, Alex Lindsay hammered it into me on every shoot. Today, it is one of the first things I teach new folks. Nowhere is the risk of ignoring this adage greater than when one is in the field, away from ample electrical outlets and clean, flat surfaces. Even when power and workspace … [Read more...] about OFFLOAD = Peace of Mind
By now most of you have heard of Aurora HDR from Trey Ratcliff and the team at Macphun, and if you haven't, well it's a joint project by Trey and Macphun to create an application tailored to exactly what the most prolific HDR photographer in the world would want out of software. Over the course of an entire year they worked together to create an app for photographers of all skill levels that would produce incredible images. You can run it as a plug-in for Photoshop, Lightroom, Aperture, and Photoshop Elements, OR you can run it as a complete … [Read more...] about Macphun’s Aurora HDR Pro Update Has Me Impressed!
When youre running your own photography business, taking photos is really only about 25% of your job. You also have to find time for editing, marketing, client meetings, website maintenance, and bookkeeping. Come tax time each April, you may be looking for a few deductions to cut your tax bill. If you use your own car for your business, its an eligible tax deduction. Its also one more thing to keep track of. While I don't run a photography-specific business, I am a professional freelancer. Ive done everything from small photo shoots, to … [Read more...] about Running your Business – Tracking Mileage
If you're a Time Lapse fan like myself than this is an exciting weekend. Gunther Wegner, creator of LRTimelapse, (arguably the best plugin/tool for your time lapse arsenal on the market), just sent out the press release detailing the specifics of the latest update to LRTimelapse 4.5 including use of some of the awesome newest features in Lightroom CC. New Features in LRTimelapse 4.5 Added Support for the new Local Dehaze in Lightroom 6.2 / CC.2 on Linear, Circular Gradients and the Paintbrush. The number of threads used to generate the visual … [Read more...] about Time Lapse Photography Just Got A Powerful Update
Can I vent for a second about how frustrating it can be to retouch dark circles under the eyes? While I don't claim to be a master retoucher, I do think I can hold my own, except when it comes to those under eye circles. Matching tonality and texture has always been a difficult task for me. Remove too much and it looks super fake. Don't do it enough and it looks like a shoddy job. So usually I just end up leaving them. Enter: Perfectly Clear. I've recently been playing around with this new and handy software and discovered how amazingly it … [Read more...] about Dark Circle Quick Fix with Perfectly Clear
We have all seen beautiful portraits ruined by aggressive retouching. How can we tell if a portrait crosses the abusive retouching line? Its simple, if the persons own mother doesn't recognize them, youve gone too far. Thankfully there are many retouching programs that help us achieve pleasing results. My newest ally in the retouching battle is Perfectly Clear by Athentech. For years Photo labs and Photo Kiosks have been using Perfectly Clear (in fact 30 million prints a day on average). Its fast and does a great job at batch retouching. Most … [Read more...] about Apply the Right Amount of Retouching with Perfectly Clear
It's OS upgrade time for Mac users. Yosemite bows out as El Capitan takes the stage. Last year at this time the move to Yosemite from Mavericks caused consternation among Canon photographers who relied on the EOS Utility as I reported last November first here on Photofocus. It took Canon a month to officially release the fix. Test... 2.0, 3.0 The notice came this morning in the form of a banner on my MacPro. Upgrade to El Capitan was its gist. Having learned from last year's snafu, I updated only the MacPro in the post production suite. A quick … [Read more...] about Canon EOS Utility vs. Mac’s new OS El Capitan
On Friday, September 25th, Apple released the next addition to their industry-shaking smartphone, the iPhone. Customers who were fast enough to preorder either the iPhone 6s and/or the iPhone 6s Plus either queued up in front of their local Apple Store or had a courier deliver their unit(s) to their doors. For the past year, I've used an unlocked 128Gb Silver iPhone 6 Plus and have been exceptionally pleased with it. So, when preorders for this next generation of smartphones went live, I stuck with what I knew and ordered an unlocked 128Gb … [Read more...] about A First Look: The Apple iPhone 6s Plus
Finally, a digital soft focus filter like Zeiss' Softar 2 I've been exploring Perfectly Clear 2.0 for proofing for a while now. It's great for doing a quick pass on a set of portraits to reduce blemishes, soften skin and generally enhance a take so clients could select their "hero" for final retouching. It occurred to me that some of the settings Perfectly Clear has for skin smoothing could be combined with standard Photoshop retouching techniques to achieve the effect of an old filter not used since days of shooting film... The … [Read more...] about Perfectly Clear Skin Smoothing
When Corel, the people behind Corel Paint, announce that theyre releasing a Photoshop and Lightroom plugin it peaks ones interest, so I bought the Starter Pack and gave it a try. Starting image for this post comes from Fotolia Starter Pack As an online purchase the download was fast and the installation was quick and easy. The Starter Pack plugin comes with 11 different brushes and costs $49.99 (Appx 32.50 / 44.60). Full brush sets can be added for a 24.99 for me here in the UK, thats about $38, so I was in no rush to start filling my … [Read more...] about ParticleShop – First Look
I was recently given the new LG G4 smartphone to try out by my friends at ThreeUK. Theres a lot I could write about the software, shape etcetera, but Im a phoneographer so lets get straight to the camera. Go Manual The camera is good on this phone but really comes into its own when you opt to switch to Manual mode. Here you can opt to change; White Balance Focal depth Exposure compensation ISO Shutter speed All pretty cool and opens up some great photographic opportunities, but what really got me excited was the option to shoot jpg or DNG … [Read more...] about Shooting Raw on a Smartphone with the LG G4
This option is new to Lightroom CC, and Im still finding the right way to use it in my workflow. Basically, it gathers pictures together based on the faces it can recognize in the image. The more I think about it, the more I see some powerful uses for it. Enter the People view using the icon at the bottom of the Library screen (press T to show the tool bar) or by pressing the O key (P is already taken for flagging a picture as a pick). Lightroom begins automatically recognizing faces and stacking pictures together with the same faces; the same … [Read more...] about Organize Your Portraits and Group Shots: Using People View in Lightroom CC
You gotta join us live for our next Google+ Hangout, totally free of charge. Not only will you learn terrific techniques, but if you tune in live, you can be entered to win excellent prizes to help you in your work. (Note: MUST BE TUNED IN LIVE TO WIN). We kick off Wednesday 5/27, 4:00pm Eastern, 3:00pm Central, 2:00pm Mountain, and 1:00pm Pacific. 4:30pm in Newfoundland. RSVP here and it'll show your local time. If you like shooting the same subjects in the same way that have been shot for a hundred years...then this hangout is not for … [Read more...] about Lightroom Hangout: Diving into Cinemagraphs with Rob Knight
A look at Noiseless Pro by Macphun a standalone application that helps you reduce color and luminance noise in your images, and process raw images! … [Read more...] about Noiseless Pro Review
This morning Adobe announced a major update to Lightroom! The new version is called Lightroom CC, and is a part of the Creative Cloud. (For those of you not interested in using the Creative Cloud subscription service, it can still be downloaded as a standalone application, Lightroom 6.) The new update comes with some very much anticipated improvements, so let's take a look at some of the most impressive new feature's inside of Lightroom CC:HDR Merge Yes! Finally! We can merge HDR images inside of Lightroom! Photoshop is no longer a … [Read more...] about Say Hello to the NEW Adobe Lightroom CC!
Your memory card can be the most important piece of gear on a shoot. It stores the one thing that can get you paidbut what do you do if it becomes corrupt? Ive had a bunch of memory devices become corrupt; a brand-new CF card while shooting HDR and portraits on Zuma Beach in California, a trusty SD card in my main camera while shooting video interviews for Under Armour, and even an AJA hard drive while recording my multi-camera sports production for ESPN. They say everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. But there are steps I can take to … [Read more...] about Recover Files from a Corrupt Memory Card Using Mac Disk Utility
The Challenge of Dynamic Range My next house I did end up photographing was a small townhouse. I think those are extra challenging to photograph as you are working to be creative in tiny places to get the entire room without too much distortion. A tripod is a must even when working in such a tiny space. I went to work and bracketed each room. The realtor sent me a text saying his clients were impressed and LOVED the pictures. I breathed a sigh of relief. After that praise I looked back through some photos and decided to play some more with … [Read more...] about What can Photomatix do for you?
Adobe Lightroom mobile is a companion app to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5. The app is FREE if you have one of the following plans: Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan Creative Cloud Photoshop Photography Program Creative Cloud complete plan Creative Cloud Student and Teacher Edition Creative Cloud for teams complete plan Or, you can download and sign up for a free 30-day trial of Lightroom mobile. Once the free 30-day trial expires, Lightroom mobile will require a Creative Cloud membership. Extend Your Workflow Beyond the Desktop By … [Read more...] about Android Users: Meet Lightroom Mobile
It's well-known that the Perfect Photo Suite is great for adding effects, replacing skies, and adding texture. But did you know that it is also a great place to process portraits? Here are a few methods you can use to process a portrait (or a group of portraits) in onOne's Perfect Photo Suite: Perfect Portrait One of the more obvious ways to edit a portrait is to use the Perfect Portrait module. Here's how it works: 1. First, open a photo into Perfect Portrait. You can do this through Lightroom (File > Plug-in Extras > Perfect … [Read more...] about Simple Portrait Processing in onOne’s Perfect Photo Suite
A few months ago, I was in a hangout with Matt Kloskowski and Richard Harrington discussing some of the new features of onOne's Perfect Photo Suite 9 (click here to watch the replay). During the live broadcast, we had quite a few questions rolling in from the viewers, but we didn't have the time to answer all of them. So I thought I would put together some of those questions here for you on the blog! BTW, onOne has a free 30-day trial of their software ... click here to download it!Question: What makes onOne's Perfect Photo Suite 9 better than … [Read more...] about Q&A: onOne’s Perfect Photo Suite 9
Editor's Note: This week, we're focussing on onOne Software's Perfect Photo Suite. We've asked several Photofocus writers to each make a tutorial. We'll also have a free preset pack at the end of the week for you.In this onOne "Perfect Inspiration" video, I show how I process one of my food photograph's using Lightroom 5 and onOne's Perfect Effects 9. Click here to download the preset created in this tutorial. Be sure to head over to onOne's website to view more videos from other talented photographers! … [Read more...] about Processing Food Photography Using Lightroom & onOne Software
There are so many options for cloud backup storage today, but Amazon just announced a great plan for their Amazon Prime subscribers. Unlimited Photo Storage with Amazon Prime. Ive been an Amazon Prime subscriber for a few years now and the perks just keep coming to make it worth the price of the membership. Not only do you get FREE two-day shipping, but you also get access to access to the Kindle Owners Lending Library, Prime Instant Video (a Netflix competitor), and Prime Music, among other things listed here. There are 3 ways to upload your … [Read more...] about Amazon Prime Just Got Even Better with Free Cloud Photo Storage
A lot of self-employed creatives work from home. Photographers, web designers, graphic designers, video guys . . . me included. Its convenient, cost-effective, and is a great option if youre just starting out. But working from home is one of the hardest things to do. There are so many distractions . . . the internet, the television, the animals, the children . . . you get where Im headed. Its important to hold yourself accountable every day and make sure you get your tasks done. Enter iDoneThis. iDoneThis isn't new, but it's simple. Its a … [Read more...] about iDoneThis • A Key to Accountability Success
When: Monday, November 17 at 11:00am PST Where: Google+ & This Post (Live streaming in the video below) Watch LIVE for a chance to win a copy of onOne Software's Perfect Photo Suite 9! Click Here to Sign Up and Watch! To learn more about how Google Hangouts work, click here http://www.google.com/+/learnmore/hangouts/. Joining the hangout will let you ask questions and chat with attendees. The video will also be recorded and rebroadcasted if you are unable to watch the live stream. … [Read more...] about Live Hangout with onOne Software and Matt Kloskowski!
Mylio, which is an acronym for My Life is Organized, made it's debut at the PhotoPlus Expo 2014 an event I was unable to attend. This put me at a disadvantage when trying to figure out all the details of the new program. Normally I would spend a lot of time with a representative at the show and pick their brain on every detail. Instead, I had to search the net for what fellow photographers and what Mylio's own website is saying about the product. I then read between the lines to see if Mylio will make it's way into my workflow. What exactly is … [Read more...] about Will Mylio make it in your Workflow?
One of the things I love about Perfect Effects inside of the new onOne Perfect Photo Suite 9 is the ability to stack more than one filter, blend them together, and ultimately create my very own unique combination of effects. Their new slogan says it all: Your Photo. Your Look. And it couldn't be more true. This software gives each of use the ability to completely customize the processing from start to finish. Because I've been using onOne's products for several years, I have found myself gravitating to some of the same filters over and over. … [Read more...] about My “Top 10” Favorite Filters in onOne’s Perfect Effects 9
At the Adobe Max keynote recently, Adobe announced several new mobile apps that connect you directly with your Adobe profile and makes it easy to access what you do between your devices. One of those is Photoshop Mix. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1bfmtt6txM My Test Run I decided to go ahead and try a quick feature and play with the new Adobe Photoshop Mix. Heres what I did. 1. Get an image. I opened the app and imported a typical cell phone portrait of my daughter. The app can see your camera roll, camera, Creative Cloud, Lightroom Mobile … [Read more...] about A quick look at Adobe Photoshop Mix