Sharpen your Adobe Photoshop techniques with Outdoor Photographer. Our articles offer Photoshop tips on topics ranging from resizing images to enhancing color. Begin your lesson in Photoshop for wildlife and nature photography now.
What does it take to visualize luminosity in black-and-white and color photography, then see and control it in Photoshop?
Luminosity is represented in a photograph by tones of black, white and gray. Luminosity is light. It represents all that we can see about the world we photograph. Every object, event and mood depends upon visible light represented by luminosity in the photograph.
Shoot in B&W or convert in Photoshop? That is the question...
If you’d like to simulate the results produced by specific films or film/developer combinations, reach for Exposure from Alien Skin. Based on detailed analysis of actual film stock, Exposure not only re-creates the film coloration and contrast, but also actually reproduces the size, shape and color of the film grain. If you like the look of push-processed Kodak TRI-X, for example, you can re-create it digitally—with authentic results. Exposure performs other editing functions as well. The options include a monochromatic toning filter set (blue, gold, sepia, selenium and sulphide) that allows you to re-create the look of old-fashioned image recording techniques.
Lightroom is a program designed for photographers and the way they work
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom has grabbed the attention of many photographers, and for good reason. It’s a significantly different way of approaching images than Photoshop, Photoshop Elements or any other traditional image-processing software.
Using Photoshop to repair problem skies when the light is too contrasty for your film or sensor to record properly
One of the great challenges I find with photography is the inability to capture the full range of tones and colors I see in a scene. My camera just isn’t capable of doing that. This Photoshop technique allows you to repair an image that didn’t record the original scene correctly, turning a throwaway shot into a photo suitable for framing.
Hamlet's new D-SLR dilemma: to underexpose or not to underexpose?
I know you’ve heard this or something like it: "I always underexpose my digital files. I want to be sure my highlights are protected, so underexposure, for me, is like insurance for the highlights. Anyway, I shoot RAW, so it really doesn’t matter if my image is underexposed."
Use these tips to make the most of this key Photoshop tool
Working in an image-editing program without utilizing Layers is, from my perspective, like using a pro SLR and leaving it on manual all the time. You’ll still be able to make quality images, but you certainly won’t be taking advantage of all the technology that makes life easier!
Interpret a scene optimally to match your vision of the subject
One of the great challenges for any nature photographer is to use photographic tools, such as lens, filter, film, flash and digital camera choices, to control the photographic process so that you can interpret the world true to how you saw the scene. Perhaps an even greater challenge, though, is to use tools with discretion and craft—in other words, use that lens choice in a way that enhances the subject, the filter so that its use doesn’t overpower the subject, the film so colors aren’t garish and the flash so it doesn’t look alien.
A graphic pen and tablet can make a difference in the digital darkroom
How do you work with images in the computer? I’m not asking what program you use, what file formats are preferred or even if you use Mac vs. Windows. Nor am I wondering what workflow you choose or if you have a certain style of image processing.
Reveal the color and contrast in your murky digital images
Flat and dull. While the tones in your images sometimes can be described by these two words, simple techniques in your image-processing software allow you to quickly take out the grays and add depth, detail and a punch of color.
When do you really need the 16-bit capabilities of RAW files?
More isn’t always better, but sometimes it helps. More strokes in a golf game is a bad thing, while more runs is good for baseball (unless you’re on the losing side). More heat is great for baking bread, but awful for storing eggs.
Change and enhance color with precision using this adjustment tool
The Hue/Saturation adjustment is found in most image-editing applications, and offers one of the best ways to change colors both globally and selectively. This easy-to-use tool creates remarkably different looks to your color images.
Tame the large files produced by a high-resolution digital SLR
They’re beautiful—one look and I’m captivated. I stare and find myself absorbed by every detail. If this isn’t love, it’ll do. As a card-carrying photo geek, I admit that looking at digital files produced by the new 12- and 16-megapixel SLRs leads to a rush that normally means a trip to the confessional. Okay, maybe I exaggerate, but not by much.
Image quality in a digital camera is affected by much more than how many pixels fit its sensor
Recently, I received a letter from a young photographer friend asking about the issue of megapixels and digital cameras. He wanted to make a purchase and wondered if a slight increase in megapixels was worth the cost: "If one photograph was taken with a 6-megapixel camera and one with an 8-megapixel camera, when would you see a difference as the photos were enlarged?"
One of the reasons I’ve been photographing since I was a kid is because it’s fun. I’m guessing that’s why you enjoy the medium, too, and why you read a photo magazine. Digital photography, especially, has reinvigorated the craft, restoring the fun I had when I first started taking pictures. Anyone who has known me for a while knows that when I’m excited about something, I like to share it with everyone. With that in mind, I’d like to help you use the new technology for digital photography without the fear of doing it right or wrong, but just to have fun with the process. You really can’t screw it up. If you take a poor picture, you can see it immediately in the LCD. No harm done; just delete the shot and try again. Not sure how to use a histogram? Try some different exposures of the same scene and compare the histograms and see what happens. Photography is a visual medium; the LCD makes digital technology visual, too.
Now you can get more out of all lenses, even making low-priced optics perform like the best
When I first started photographing seriously years ago, I wanted to expand my lens choices for my SLR, but I couldn’t afford it. So I did the best I could, buying budget lenses that weren’t sharp wide-open (but were useable stopped down), inexpensive "preset" lenses and so on—maybe not the best lenses in the world, but they worked and I got by.