Tuesday, June 10, 2014
We bust some of the most common myths that digital photographers take into the field to help you get your best images
If you want realistic or even naturalistic, you're often going to have to do some processing of the image whether that's something like a RAW file in Lightroom or a carefully setup processing of JPEG files in your camera.
4 RAW isn't processed. This is one of those myths that has persisted forever. All cameras do some processing of the image signal as it comes off of the sensor and then again as that signal is converted into a digital file in the A/D (analog/digital) converter. This processing affects the noise, tonality and color of an image, which is why you can have the same sensor in cameras made by different manufacturers and get different-looking RAW files from each.
5 Sharpness is mainly about the lens and camera. I wrote the article "Sharpness: The Deadly Dozen," which shows how much sharpness is affected by things like camera movement and your choice of ƒ-stop. (Find it in the February 2014 issue of OP or online at outdoorphotographer.com.) The best, most expensive lens in the world isn't necessarily going to get you sharper pictures unless you're also paying attention to your craft as a photographer. Cameras and lenses today are extremely good, and if your photos aren't sharp, it's rarely because of the lenses. It's most often because of camera movement during exposure.
Buy your lenses based on the focal length's unique qualities and on what you can afford. Then hone your craft to get the most out of whatever gear you own, and you'll be surprised at how sharp your images can be.
In addition, noise can add a grittiness to a photo that gives it emotional content that can't be had in any other way. A photograph of wildlife in extremely bad weather conditions, for example, can look kind of unreal if there's no noise. Having some noise there adds a feeling of grittiness that adds to the mood. So consider that noise can give you some creative and technical possibilities.
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