And another week passed very quickly and it’s time for another process post. For today I chosen a photo from a beautiful sunset by a lighthouse in Austria. So let’s take a look at the finished photo first
I really wanted to show the warmth and glow of the sun in this one, and I edited it accordingly. For this I started with 6 exposures. I normally do less, but since this was shoot into the sun, I wanted to be safe, that I have enough.
Where the 0EV looked like this:
As always I started with Lightroom. I corrected the white balance, lens distortion and chromatic aberrations. I also added some vibrance and noise reduction.
I chosen manual blend fro this photo (I usually first try Oloneo photoengine, just for a quick text how the HDR would look, if I don’t like it, I go with manual blend). I exported all the 6 exposures into Photoshop, and did the following edits on it (layers numbered from bottom up)
1. -2EV exposures. I started with a darker one, as I don’t like to blend the sky
2. -1EV exposure, brightened the dark parts of the photo using a luminosity mask
3. 0EV exposure, brightened the dark parts of the photo using a luminosity mask even more
4. Color efex Pro contrast filter, to add more local contrast to the photo
5+6. I wanted more glow and color in the photo, so I added glow to it (check out my tutorial on how to do it)
7. Created a vibrance mask using the TK actions and added more color to the photo.
8. Brightened the very dark areas using a curves layer.
9. Added more structure using a high pass filter layer.
Normally I would have ended here, but I left the photo for a while, and when I returned, I felt that it’s not finished yet. So I did few more edits:
10. Brightened few shadow spots from the +2EV exposure
11. Color effex glamour glow filter on most of the photo
12. Brightened just the lighthouse from the +2EV exposure. The lighthouse is white, and it didn’t look that way in the photo.
13. I felt the photo still being too dark, so using exposure I brightened everything except the sunset sky
14. Added linear contrast using curves
15. Color effex tonal contrast filter applied on a new layer, but the layer set to luminosity (so it does not affect the colors) and brushed where I wanted to have the additional tonal contrast.
16. Color effex darken/lighten center filter to add a vignette to the photo.
17. A little more saturation to the bottom right shadowy area.
And that’s all I did with this image. To find out more on how I edit, check out the guides and before after categories on this blog, or check out my video tutorial series here:
I spend one evening in Dubai on the beach by the Burj Al Arab. Somehow the sunset was quite nice, but the photos look horrible. Not sure why. That actually the reason I haven’t yet posted any photos from there. But of course, here is a fist one. It’s not the best photo I ever taken, but not that bad either :)
This is a manual blend from 4 exposures, done in Photoshop.
As almost every photographer, I also try to be quite active on social media. But probably as for everyone there, there are some practices some photographers do, that should not be tolerated and should stop. So I thought I put together this little list, to give few pointers what to avoid. This is mostly specific to Facebook, but some are applicable also to other networks.
1. Don’t beg. Never beg for likes, views, shares, comments, and so on. I don’t mean one can’t ask for it in the description, but there is always a line, after which it looks out of place and it shows that you are not confident in your photos.
2. Don’t spam. For every social networks there is usually a certain number of posts per day, that look acceptable. It’s hard to say how many are ok, but in my opinion for Facebook pages, it’s between one and 4 posts a day. Just take into account how many pages an average person is following, and you see why more is too much.
3. Don’t invite people to empty pages. This is something I see a lot of times with photographers who only start on Facebook. They just created a page and already they want a huge following. No-one who does not know you personally will like your page if there is nothing there. First add at lest few posts, a good cover and some photos. And don’t forget to create a good address for the page under www.facebook.com/username .
4. Don’t buy followers. This is never worth it. The followers sold are always fake. I seen reports that not even the followers bought directly through Facebook advertising are always real. Organic growth from good content is always the best.
5. Don’t post to multiple Facebook groups/pages at once. This behavior I always reward by unsubscribing from the person immediately. Just think how Facebook works. You post to 10 groups and people following you will see 10 identical posts on their feeds. A nice photo is great to see, but when you see it 10 times, it becomes spam very quickly.
6. Don’t post/message links to your page asking people to like. Do this only if you want to look amateurish and desperate. You want someone to check out your page? Post a good photo to their page and if they like it, they will check out the rest of your work. I always do.
7. Don’t just say Hi. If you message someone, another photographer you don’t know personally, write why you message them. Just writing Hi, sending a link and similar, will be ignored most times. Say why you message them right away, and what you want (if you want something :)) and I guarantee, if they have time, the chance for a reply is much higher.
8. Don’t ask stupid questions. Better said, think and read before you ask. I give an example here. If I name a photo “Dubai Marina”, mention in the description that it was taken in “Dubai Marina” and tag the photo location as “Dubai Marina” and I still get a question where the photo was taken, I will definitively not reply, because I know the person does not care about the answer.
9. Don’t tag un-relevant people. This is a favorite tactic to get more views on photos on Facebook. My reaction to this is always un-tag and un-friend immediately. And I think everyone else should reward people who do this the same way.
10. Don’t steal photos. One would think that this does not have to be repeated, but it seams that it has to. So never steal, never post other peoples work without a proper credit. And if you are not sure, ask them first. You will always get caught. And never try to submit other peoples work into contests under your name (yes, a person did this with one o my photos).
11. Don’t connect every account to your Facebook. It’s very easy to have your Facebook page updated with everything you do on the internet (500px likes, flickr uploads, instagram updates …), but again it gets into the territory of spamming. You can easily get a huge number of posts that your followers just don’t care about.
12. Don’t overdo it on the watermark. I know that everyone tries to protect his/her work, but think about what you are trying to show. Is it really the watermark? If no, then why it is more dominant than the photo?
13. Don’t ad people to groups. It’s nice that you have a group, but don’t just add everyone. Share the group, invite the people, don’t just add them. Group send out notifications, unwanted notifications are annoying. Annoying things lead to un-friending and blocking.
14. Don’t group message all your friends – This is so annoying, especially around the holidays. If you want to post something to all your friends, post it on your wall, don’t group message them. Getting notifications from numerous messages one does not care for can drive one crazy. Never, I repeat, never do that.
I think I could continue even more, but there is a simple rule. Before you do anything, think first about it. Do you want to be taken seriously? Do you wan to be taken as a professional? Than behave like that. And even if you don’t want to be a professional, try to behave like a decent human being. If something bothers you, it will also bother other people if you do it.