Pictures Workflow – How to Lower Production Time by 50 percent

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Like most photographers, I like to play and constantly explore Photoshop. Each time you use it, it seems like you see some new trick as well as a wonderful way of accomplishing one thing quicker than before. But now I am a businessman too so I need to be careful about how much time Now I am spending in front of the computer. The longer I spend there, often the less I have for taking pics and marketing my expert services, and that’s where I generate profits. So I’ve always acquired the philosophy of ‘get it right in the camera’ even before Photoshop was born. Having said that, let’s see how we can get wonderful files that require either none or very little manipulation once the shoot.

One: Shoot a new custom white balance.

I will use a recent shoot I had at the beach as a very good example of why you should shoot any custom white balance vs shooting on ‘auto’. I actually started this shoot together with about 45 minutes to go right up until sunset. The light, and the shade temperature of that light, improved rapidly during that time. I actually shot the same model in opposition to green grass, blue waters, and white sand. Oh, the woman also changed her apparel in the middle of it. By taking relation to 30 seconds every 15 minutes to help shoot a new white sense of balance, I was able to get consistent coloring and pleasing skin sounds. And if I wanted to make a coloring correction, I could do it around the globe with all the files, since the coloring is consistent from data to file.

If I shot with auto, my camera could well be trying to make sense of the tons of conditions and colors presented previous to it, and even though they may be ‘acceptable’, they will vary widely. It means you have to correct each piece of data individually, not a fun approach to the night. I’d rather pay attention to ’24’! It would even be best to ‘guess’ the color heat range and lock it with your camera, even if it’s not all of that close since you could again ‘globally’ affect the alter. These changes are more easily completed in some of the RAW ripping tools software packages but I may want to bring up the old ‘RAW vs . JPEG’ debate in the following paragraphs, it’s been done to death and you ought to have your mind made up in that subject by now.

I prefer the BalanceSmarter tool (www.balancesmarter.com). It’s the perfect ‘carry everywhere’ little pop-up reflector using a white and gray side. The point that makes it unique is the CONCENTRATE ON they made in the middle of that so you can focus on it. DUH, why didn’t I think of them? I’m sure you’ve never converted your autofocus off to be able to shoot a white divider and then forgot to turn the item back on. Right? Now I am not talking!

Two: How to use an incident light meter.

I recognize some photographers who possess that since digital, they also have ‘thrown away’ their light source meters. Big mistake, mainly because now you need them today! I know you can see the photography, and I know you’ve got a histogram, but bear with me in charge of a minute. Let’s compare digital cameras to film for a second, it’s great fun and every person does it. I’ve been totally electronic digital for several years now, but when I got shooting film, I knew that like the back of my palm. I used the same motion picture at the same ISO every day. Carrying out outdoor portrait sessions, I seriously didn’t even need to glance at the meter because I was thus familiar with my film. Today let’s look at a typical backyard shoot with digital.

I could shoot at anywhere from the ISO of 100 to help 800, which makes doing subjection ‘in my head a little bit difficult, so an m comes in pretty handy. Why not consider the in-camera m? I’m amazed at how good they are really, you’d think there was a little bit of a guy in there figuring out the content in your scene instead of many tech staff trying to produce everything gray. That means the wedding ceremony dress is underexposed as well as the black cat is overexposed. The obvious solution is to color the light itself via a great incident meter instead of computing reflected light like the camera meter.

Of course, the key reason why we need to be so very careful with our exposure is that once we went ‘digital’, our lat. disappeared! Current color bad films are good for possibly a stop underexposure and you can possibly overexpose them until could possibly be ‘bulletproof’. Or at least three put a stop to. Compare this with a digital camera. The current crop of digital camera SLRs is probably good for 1/3rd of a stopover and 2/3rd ‘s of a stop underexposed. Yikes! So much for filming from the hip! And while Factors. admit to doing this at weddings because you have got to, why shouldn’t I spend some time doing a portrait to get the item perfect?

While beyond the stove of this article, make sure you calibrate your current incident meter. I use any Polaris brand meter that will I’ve had for many years and also bounced off several sidewalks. I find I have to wide open a half stop within the meter reading for ‘perfect’ exposure, so do your own tests. The best way to do that is to get any ‘Calibration Target’ to test under even light, with various exposures. Take photos of it and open them in Photoshop. Your ‘info’ numbers must read about 20/127/245 for black/gray/white. Match those numbers up to your current meter readings, adjust ISO if needed, and you aren’t good to go. This also eliminates specifics between different camera systems.

Got all that? Good! At this point let’s add five far more ‘tips’ that will have you capturing perfect files and investing more time watching ‘The Soup’! (OK, so now you know a couple of my favorite TV programs! We have two DVRs! I’m about TIME! )

Tip One: Use a fixed f/stop lens. I know they cost more however we’re talking perfection right here, so we don’t want to be utilizing lenses that change the quantity of light entering when you affect the focal length. Say goodbye to all those variable speed lenses unless, of course, they’re ones you use moderately.

Tip Two: Watch the actual brightness range. You can have ideal exposure and white harmony but a superior image want details in the highlights along with shadows. Watch the background specifically ‘blown out highlights. Smaller dots are fine nevertheless large expanses, like a clear sky in a scenic image, just won’t do.

Tip Three: Learn the histogram. A meter will give you the best exposure and a custom bright balance will lasso in which color for you, but the histogram is a graphic interpretation of the scene in front of you. It will show you if parts are around or underexposed. It will show you how much of each ‘brightness level’ is included in the scene. Invest a photo of a ‘gray card’ properly exposed, you’ll get a single spike dead center on your own personal histogram. Get used to it and you’ll be able to tell only where each part of your own personal photo lies in it.

Tip Four: Check exposure as well as white balance on wedding dresses! I do it all the time! Right after metering my exposure, I will walk up close to the new bride and pop a quick close-up of a detailed section of the girl’s dress! If it’s got fine detail and my histogram isn’t very crowding the right side, I am good. Of course, if wedding brides wear red dresses wherever you are from, this will not work, but I’ve observed so many wedding photos without any detail in the wedding gown as well as there’s just no reason for it!

Tip Five: Make use of a pro lab. Even if you do all of the above, you need a closed-loop program with color calibration at each and every step to insure the best color and density. You really should do that, I choose not to. 95% of my files are generally sent to my lab (www.lustrecolor.com) with NO color or solidity correction on my part. That they come back perfect. There’s no top secret to it. Like I explained at the beginning, ‘get it appropriate in the camera’.

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