Post-processing Difficult Images

Working with difficult files Image 1

I recently spent a lot of time working with some quite challenging files to prepare my recent article “Photographing aircraft in flight with the Tamron 150-600mm”, and a Photography Life reader asked if I could share some of the details of the processing that I do with difficult files.

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Lightroom 5.3 and Camera RAW 8.3 Update

Lightroom 5

Today Adobe announced the availability of the final versions of Lightroom 5.3 and Camera RAW 8.3 (the previous version was a release candidate). A number of bugs that were present in Lightroom 5.3 have been fixed, and new camera and lens profiles have been added. No new features have been added, so this is mostly a camera / lens update + bugfix release. For those that recently purchased the Nikon Df, this release provides full RAW support for the camera! Other new cameras that are now supported since the release of the 8.3 RC include the Canon EOS M2, Casio EX-10, Nokia Lumia 1020 and Pentax K-3.

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Lightroom 5.3 and Camera RAW 8.3 RC Update

Lightroom 5

Today Adobe announced the availability of Lightroom 5.3 and Camera RAW 8.3 release candidates. A number of bugs that were present in Lightroom 5.2 were fixed, and new camera and lens profiles have been added. No new features have been added, so this is mostly a camera / lens update + bugfix release. For those that recently purchased the Nikon D610, this release provides full RAW support for the camera! Other new cameras that are supported include the Nikon D5300, Nikon 1 AW1, Fuji X-E2, Olympus OM-D E-M1, Sony A7 and Sony A7R.

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Lightroom 5.2 and Camera RAW 8.2 RC Update

Lightroom 5

Today Adobe announced the availability of Lightroom 5.2 and Camera RAW 8.2 release candidates. A number of bugs that were present in Lightroom 5 were fixed, and new camera and lens profiles have been added. In addition, some new features features have been added to Lightroom, including a smoothness adjustment slider, refinements to the spot healing tool and local adjustment brush. Preliminary RAW support for the recently announced Canon EOS 70D and Sony RX100 II is also provided. The Adobe team skipped Lightroom 5.1 version and jumped directly to 5.2, to keep up with the Camera RAW naming convention.

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Photoshop vs Photoshop Elements

Adobe Photoshop or Photoshop Elements?

Digital photography has become extremely popular thanks to its accessibility and speed, but to get the best out of those photographs some time needs to be spent editing and tweaking them. Thankfully, plenty of applications are available for you to complete such tasks with, starting with moderate and user-friendly functionality of Google Picasa all the way up to most complex pieces of software, such as Adobe Photoshop (or simply PS). In fact, Photoshop is probably one of the most popular photo processing programs currently available. Most people that use it know but a few percent of its capabilities and are likely never to use all of it, myself included! Fewer people still understand that it has never been targeted squarely for photographic use (the way Adobe Lightroom is, for example), but rather all sorts of graphical editing. How much sense does it make to use such a complex and professional piece of software to edit simple family photographs? Not that much if you’re a simple enthusiast who just wants high quality photographs with minimal fuss. Thankfully, Adobe has something for you as well. Photoshop Elements (PSE in short) is a lighter, simpler, quicker version of its sibling. In essence, it offers all the functionality you’ll ever need to edit your JPG and even RAW images, but through user friendly tools and interface. In this Photoshop vs Photoshop Elements article, I will give you a quick tour of 11 capabilities of Photoshop Elements. Hopefully, this brief comparison will help you decide which one is better for your needs.

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Lightroom 4.4 and Camera RAW 7.4 Update

Adobe Lightroom 4

A while ago Adobe announced Release Candidates of Lightroom 4.4 and Camera RAW 7.4. These versions were close to being finished, but may have contained some bugs. Today, Adobe has made the full versions of their updates available. The main goal of these updates is to add support for recently announced cameras (25 of them, actually), but there’s a number of important improvements, too. This is quite a big update. First and foremost, Adobe claims better handling of Fuji’s X-Trans sensor RAW files.

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Lightroom 4.3 and Camera RAW 7.3 Update

Lightroom 4

If you happened to launch Lightroom today, you might have been notified that a new version of Lightroom 4 is available. Today, Adobe released the final production version of Lightroom 4.3. As usual, plenty of bugs have been fixed and a lot more cameras and lenses have been added to the release. Full RAW support for Nikon D600 has now been finalized and new cameras like Canon EOS 6D, Nikon 1 V2 and Sony RX-1 have been added to the database. Lots of expensive Leica lenses, Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II and other third party lenses have also been added to the Lightroom Lens Correction module.

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Lightroom 4.3 and Camera RAW 7.3 RC Update

Lightroom 4

I typically cover Lightroom and Camera RAW updates pretty quickly, but this time I am a little late in the game. For those who have not yet updated, last week Adobe released the release candidate versions of Lightroom 4.3 and Camera RAW 7.3. If you own one of those new Macbook Pro laptops with a retina display, you will be happy with this Lightroom update, because it makes the interface more compatible and easier to read in the Develop module. Aside from the usual bugfixes, Lightroom got additional support for new cameras. If you are a Nikon D600 owner, you should update as soon as possible, since the release now has full support for the camera (Lightroom 4.2 only had partial or “beta” support for the D600). A long list of newly supported lenses (mostly Leica) is provided below.

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Insane Adobe Photoshop CS6 + Lightroom 4 Deal

Adobe Photoshop CS6

When I first received this special from B&H two days ago, I decided to post it on our Facebook page only. Within minutes, I received a bunch of emails and comments from our fans, asking about this deal. This morning, I found out that B&H is running this for another day, so I decided to let you guys know about this truly amazing deal.

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Maximizing Dynamic Range

Doris-Final

The more time I spend in my photography pursuits, the more I appreciate cameras that capture and photos that exploit their maximum dynamic range potential. Digital cameras have undergone dramatic improvements over the last 12+ years, but they still don’t come close to the human eye’s dynamic range capabilities. By some estimates, the human eye can distinguish up to 24 f-stops of dynamic range. Higher end DSLRs such as the Nikon D800 by comparison, can capture up to a theoretical max of 14.4 f-stops of dynamic range. The usable dynamic range of most DSLRs, however, is closer to 5-9 f-stops, considering the impact of noise, which can render some of the DSLRs’ f-stop range impractical to exploit. Thus your eyes – at least for now – are still far more capable than the best DSLR relative to recognizing various tonal gradations. As I will demonstrate via my new model, “Doris” (shown below) of the Pittsburgh Zoo, even photos taken with high quality DSLRs sometimes need a bit of extra processing to match what your eyes can see. The photo below is the result of a processing technique I often employ to boost dynamic range when it is apparent that my camera’s sensor failed to capture what I remember seeing.

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