Before and After

Julia Pfeiffer Overlook - California Coast - Before and After

I had some extra time this week to work on some more images from the California road trip that Jenn and I took last summer. It is always really fun to revisit old trips and relive the memories while doing some post processing.

Sometimes a little bit of distance from the trip allows me to come back to single image and better concentrate on what that one image needs rather then be overwhelmed and distracted by a huge folder of photos all needing post processing. It allows me to take my time and really concentrate.

How it was made: 29mm, f22, ISO 50, 2.5 Sec Canon 5D mkII, Canon 16-35mm f2.8L II, Singh ray LB Neutral Polarizer, using Coken Zpro Holder Single Exposure This particular image was processed using only luminance masking techniques, curves adjustments, and some Nik Color EFEX 4 mixed in. Check out my Photoshop layers to get an idea of all that went into it.

Using these adjustments I was able to specifically target certain areas of the image and achieve a better overall balance to the final image.

Before and After

Before After

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Hiking Griffith Park

Before and After

Before After

I had the chance to run up to Griffith Park observatory the other night to try and catch the sunset. There were good clouds in the sky and it really looked like the sunset was going to really take off but unfortunately nothing really happened. Too many low hanging clouds and the sun was never really able to get under them.

Still such a beautiful night to be out though! That is what I love about photography, it gets me out into the world and I always feel better doing it. Now if I could only feel that same way about running.......haha

How this shot was made: Canon 5d mkII, Canon 16-35mm f2.8L II Lens 16mm, f16, 1.6sec, ISO 160

5 Exposures taken on location and then blended together using the Merge to 32-bit Plug-in from Photomatix. Basic adjustments in Lightroom 4 before exporting to Photoshop CS6. Started the fun off by using Nik Color efex pro 4 to bring out the details and contrast. After getting it pretty close to what I was looking for, I started experimenting with various Luminance Masking techniques. This has been a new thing for me but I have be getting really fantastic results and it has really been the missing ingredient I have been looking for for certain adjustments. Used various masks for exposure tweaking, saturation, and contrast through out. Used Highpass filter for sharpening, and Nik Define 2 for noise reduction in the sky. Final export using Lightroom 4.

Hiking Griffith Park

Pastel Paris - Before and After

Before and After

Before After

One of the best things about digital photography is that you can go back and reprocess images that you might have missed from previous trips. This particular image was one of the first I took while I was setting up for blue hour in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.   I ended up processing an image that was much later in time when the blue was really hitting its peak.  I never really gave this one much thought, but as I was looking through my albums this week I noticed for the first time its potential in terms of post processing. I finally was able to "see" what it really "could be".

See over the last several years, as I have developed my photography and post processing skills, I have begun to really see the potential in my images as well as have the post processing skills necessary to express those ideas.  Its been a long road to get to this point but I can finally see all of the ingredients coming together and It feels so wonderful. I still have a long ways to go, but its wonderful to finally be at this point.  I feel like what is "possible", is finally at my finger tips.

How this shot was made. Canon 5D mkII, Canon 50mm f1.4 0.4 sec, ISO 100, f9

5 bracketed exposures taken on location. Merged using the Merge to 32-bit HDR plug-in from Photomatix. Basic adjustments in Lightroom 4 before exporting to photoshop cs6 for further adjustments.

Techniques and plug-ins used: Nik color efex pro 4, luminance masking techniques for saturation, foreground color balance, and contrast. Motion blur filter for sky. Highpass filter for sharpening. Lighten layer blending for car lights. Final export using lightroom 4.

Pastel Paris

Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts

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Before After

Can you believe this is a high school? Based on their website, this school has specific training in the arts for the students who are blessed to attend there. How cool is that! For more info be sure to check out. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ramon_C._Cortines_School_Of_Visual_And_Performing_Arts to learn more.

Many years ago I tried to photograph this building and failed miserable but after several years of practice it was wonderful to shot it again and really show off how wonderful and unique the building truly is.

How this shot was made:

Canon 5dmkII, Canon 16-35mm 2.8L II 16mm, f8, ISO 640, 10sec(Base Exposure)

5 bracketed exposures taken on location. Merged using the "Merge to 32-bit HDR" plugin. Basic adjustments in Lightroom before taking it into Photoshop for further adjustments. Used NIK software plugins, Color Efex Pro 4, Viveza 2, and Define 2 to enhance and bring out the colors and contrast. Final adjustments in lightroom before final export.

Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts

Across the Harbour- Sydney Australia

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Before After

Jenn and I had a wonderful picnic in this spot. There were big patches of grass, benches to enjoy the view, and tons of locals just hanging out enjoying the summer weather. There was even a workout class going on that just looked brutal. The Aussies are in shape that is fore sure!

How this shot was made:

Canon 5D mkII, 16-35mm f2.8L II 16mm F8, ISO640, at 6sec (Base Exposure)

5 Bracketed exposures (-2,-1,0,+1,+2) taken on location. Exported 5 exposures to HDRsoft's 32bit tiff plugin to combine into 32bit floating point tiff. Lightroom adjustments on the 32bit tiff to get it as close to final as I could.

Digital Blending: Brought into Photoshop for some Digital Blending to fix several issues. First the sky and water were too dark and needed some work. Second the ferry dock and bridge piller on the upper right were too bright and blown out. Third the city and opera house could use a little more contrast and some of the clarity had been lost! Also, overall the photo was still a little soft and needed a punch on sharpening and contrast.

Used -2 exposure to fix the blown out areas of the ferry station and bridge piller. Used a curves adjustment with a layer mask to add contrast to the city, opera house, and little bit in the right of the photo. Added a l"highpass" filter layer set to "overlay" to add a little more pop of sharpening and contrast to the photo, but painted out the sharpening of the sky, and water using a layer mask. Used another curves layer to brighten up the water a bit more.

Back into lightroom for final adjustments. Increased exposure by .5 and adjusted white balance adding a touch more blue to the photo to finish it off.

Across the Harbour- Sydney Australia