Tag Archives: digital workflow

  • TKActions V5 Quick Tips

    Periodically I am posting short video quick tips for how to use the TKActions V5 Panel on my YouTube channel. You can view the first four quick tips here. Subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can get notified each time I add a new one.



  • Grants Pass Presentation: Photographing and Developing for High Dynamic Range

    Grants Pass Camera Club Third Wednesday Meeting

    First Christian Church Fellowship Hall
    305 SW H St Grants Pass, OR

    Wednesday, January 21, 2015 7 - 9 pm

    Presentation: Photographing and Developing For High Dynamic Range free and open to the public

    Club website and contact

    Bracketed-Series1

    A common occurrence when photographing the landscape is that our images don't match what we saw. The brighter areas in an image may be completely overexposed or shadow areas may appear totally black. This is because the dynamic range, or contrast, we encounter in nature is often at the edge of or beyond what our cameras can record in a single exposure. Fortunately, there are many ways to overcome challenges of high dynamic range light, both in the camera and in developing. Sean's presentation will look at different types of natural light, how to evaluate the dynamic range in a scene and several techniques for controlling the dynamic range in your images.

  • Seeing The Light: The Fine Art Digital Workflow (With Zack Schnepf)

    Tattered-and-Swift

    April 5 & 6, 2014

    Presented by the Cascade Center of Photography

    Where: Bend, Oregon

    Price: $425

    Registration Page

    Join two of the Pacific Northwest's top outdoor photographers and photography educators for an intensive weekend seminar learning their digital image developing techniques. During this classroom based workshop Sean and Zack will alternate teaching duties, each sharing his personal workflow, his philosophy behind developing a photograph and the specific techniques each uses to master his images. Teaching sessions will be interspersed with work sessions in which participants will have the opportunity to apply what they have learned on laptops with guidance from Sean and Zack.

    Both instructors will walk the class through post production of several images, covering an assortment of topics including:

    • Raw adjustments
    • Color balance and contrast
    • Exposure blending
    • Creative adjustments
    • Preparing for print or web output

    The class will provide an excellent opportunity to have your specific questions answered, pick up new skills that will help you take your image developing to the next level and learn directly from two photographers who helped pioneer the current path of digital landscape and nature photography.

    Both Sean and Zack have produced video tutorial series which will provide excellent support for the content covered in this class. You can find out more about these video here on OutdoorExposurePhoto.com and at www.zschnepf.com.

  • Sizing Images Made Easy (Easier?) On The PhotoCascadia Blog

    Sizing images for screen and print output may be one of the most confusing and misunderstood concepts in digital photography, which is deceiving because it appears pretty basic on the surface. Even after more than a decade of moderately hardcore Photoshop use I still find new ways to confound myself in this area. This topic is steeped in misunderstanding, urban legend, faulty logic and general confusion. Screen resolution vs. print resolution? What is the correct resolution for the web? To resample or not to resample? How much can I enlarge an image for printing? Why shouldn't I upload a bunch of full resolution 21 megapixel images to Facebook or email them to grandma?

    I have published an article on the Photo Cascadia Blog that I hope will help clear things up a bit and allow folks to get a firm grasp on exactly how best to size images for different purposes. However, if you are a recreational photographer who isn't concerned with optimal image output, you should maintain your blissful state of mind and avoid reading this article at all cost.

    If you are already involved in using Photoshop or other photo processing applications to size your images then it could be a worthwhile read. You might be interested to know that screen images don't need to be 72 ppi (pixels per inch) and that, in fact, ppi resolution doesn't have any affect on how images appear on the screen? And what about always printing at a certain resolution such as 300 or 360 ppi? The reality is that resolutions as low as 180 ppi can produce prints that look the just as good to the eye as higher resolutions and sometimes even better. Check out the article to learn more and find out my personal guidelines and workflow tips for sizing images.

  • Image Developing Workshop Review

    Steve Cole, a photographer based in Washington, recently attended two of my digital image developing classes in Bend, Oregon. Steve is serious about photography and has spent a lot of time researching techniques and developing his skills. He drove to Bend from Seattle hoping that he could add some new techniques and skills to his repertoire.

    Steve, it turns out, is also a very good writer. After the class he was motivated to pen a detailed review of the classes. His description of what goes on during the class and what content was covered is better than I could do myself. For a well written, unsolicited overview of what we were up to in Bend I encourage you to give Steve's article a read.

    Here is a short excerpt. "So were the two classes worth it? Without hesitation, I can say YES. From the minute you first meet him, Sean is friendly and engaging without any elitism or arrogance. He is just a guy who is passionate about nature and photography and who doesn't love that? Before becoming a "pro" photographer 8 years ago, Sean was a middle school teacher and that really shows in his ability to teach and explain concepts."

    As Steve says in the article, I haven't yet scheduled these classes again in the near future. If you have a venue and a group of 10 to 15 people who are interested give me a call.

    Steve's Blog: scolephoto.blogspot.com

    Steve's Website: www.scolephoto.com

  • On Landscape Photography, Digital Image Developing and Artistic Expression

    One of the mindsets that guides my photography is that the human eye and the camera don’t experience the world in the same way. Photographs are more limited than human sight in many ways, but can also see in ways that we can not. It is my goal to understand what the camera sees so I can manipulate and coax it to capture a photograph that reconciles with my own view of the landscape. To some this goes against tradition. We have been conditioned to believe that a photograph portrays, or at least should portray, an accurate record of the world and we must accept what the camera gives us. In truth, the very act of taking a photograph significantly alters a scene from how we perceive it in any number of ways. I'm less interested in the literal and more interested in what I can communicate and create. Artists have always endeavored to express themselves, their experiences and their impressions through their medium. A camera is a tool to do just that, to paint an artistic vision of the world. I want to capture something that excites me and hopefully resonates with others. In a recent interview my friend, professional musician and fellow photographer, Chip Phillips said, "The main thing to make the [musical] performance successful is to stir up an emotional response in the listener, and the same is true with a photograph."

    Both the way that we capture and develop our images have entered a new and exciting phase. Early on I embraced the changes digital technology brought to the art form. The digital age has allowed photographers to overcome many shortcomings and limitations of cameras that have frustrated them from the beginning. The new tools of photography enable me to be more creative and to express my experiences and vision more fully than ever before. I will always be fan and a student of traditional landscape and nature photography, venturing into the land to work with the raw materials of light, form, color and texture. And while the photographic tools and techniques are evolving, the motivation and the thought processes of the nature photographer remain unchanged. If anything, I find that it is more important than ever to be on top of my game. It takes skill in traditional photography techniques as well as skill in digital developing to get my images to approach what I hope for them.

    There are those who worry that digital photography has lowered the bar. I can say my experience has been just the opposite. All the principles of light and composition continue to apply and proper camera technique is still essential. In fact, the way that I work with the camera in the field these days is more involved and creative than it ever could have been with film. I shoot thinking several steps ahead to how I will want to develop the image later on. In just a few seconds I might capture a range of frames utilizing different exposures, apertures and focal points in order to collect all the visual information in the scene I'll need to develop the finished piece. Learning how to think and work with so many variables while simultaneously pre-visualizing the future processing has been far more interesting and challenging than working within the confines of a single frame of film ever was. Far from being a shortcut or a creativity killer, digital photography allows us to express a new and exciting vision, not unlike the way film photography did when it was introduced over a century ago.

    For further musings on the topics of photography, artistic expression and where current digital developing techniques come to bare I would point you toward Guy Tal's recent article: Lie Like You Mean It.

    There are so many great activities one can be involved in in life. For many of us, one of those activities is the magic of exploring the world with our cameras in hand, capturing moments and trying to make lasting memories of the scenes that impress upon us.

    Links that might be of interest:

    Upcoming image processing classes and outdoor photography workshops.

    Instructional videos on fine art image processing.

    In my photography I am aware that the human eye and the camera don’t see the world in the same way. Photographs are more limited than human sight in some ways, but can also see in other ways that we can not. Since its invention we have been conditioned to accept that photography portrays a “literal” record of the world. However, as an artist, I'm less interested in the literal and more interested in how I can communicate my own experience and personal artistic vision. Artists have always endeavored to express themselves, their experiences and their impressions through their medium. My challenge is to use the camera to do just that, to paint an artistic vision of the world as I see it. I strive to do it well enough that it resonates with others.

    I am a fan of traditional landscape and nature photography. I derive great pleasure from venturing into the land and working with the raw materials of natural light, form, color and texture. The earth is my palette. But I also want to go beyond photography as a mere technical pursuit or objective record of natural history. In my photos I struggle to express something beyond a literal representation of the scene. Through the use of traditional photography techniques as well as careful digital developing I struggle to project my own human impressions, experiences and imagination. I hope that those who view my images are able to experience the same sense of adventure, mystery, drama, exploration and beauty that I do when I am out in the world.

    Photography has entered a new and exciting era. Early on I embraced the changes digital technology brought to the art form. The digital age has allowed photographers to overcome many shortcomings and limitations of cameras that have frustrated them from the beginning. It is an exciting time to be a landscape artist. The new tools of photography enable me to be more creative and to express my experiences and vision more fully than ever before.

    For those wondering if digital cameras have lowered the bar in photography, I can say my experience has been just the opposite. All the principles of light and composition continue to apply and proper camera technique is still essential. In fact, the way that I work with the camera in the field these days is more involved and creative than it ever was or could have been with film. I shoot thinking several steps ahead to how I will want to develop the image later on. In just a few seconds I might capture a range of frames utilizing different exposures, apertures and focal points in order to collect all the visual information in the scene I'll need to develop the finished piece. Learning how to think and work with so many variables while simultaneously pre-visualizing the future processing has been far more interesting and challenging than working within the confines of a single frame of film ever was. Far from being a shortcut and creativity killer, digital photography allows us to express a new and exciting vision, not unlike the way film photography did when it was introduced over a century ago.

  • How Many Exposures To Bracket For Exposure Blending Or HDR?

    As photographers we frequently struggle to overcome the limitations of our equipment in order to create the photographs we envision. One of the biggest limitations of traditional photography is the narrow dynamic range of light that can be contained in an image compared to what we see.

    Techniques for blending exposures vary from simple to highly complex. They can be accomplished using skilled layer masking techniques in Photoshop. We also have the option to use one of a rapidly growing list of exposure blending programs commonly referred to as High Dynamic Range (HDR) software.

    One of the most common questions I'm asked in classes and workshops on the topic of bracketing exposures for exposure blending and HDR imaging is, "how do you know how many exposures you need to bracket?"

    The goal is to capture all the dynamic range tonal information in a scene in a series of exposures. The sequence of images below shows four exposures I took of a high dynamic range scene on the Columbia River. Having all the shadow and highlight information recorded in the various exposures allowed me to blend them using layer masks to create the final image. I could have also used one of many HDR applications to blend the exposure values.

    To read the full article I wrote on the Photo Cascadia Blog go HERE.

    In the first exposure I noticed that both the shadows and highlights extended beyond the ends of the histogram.

    By underexposing a stop I was able to contain most of the highlights.

    Underexposing two stops enabled me to retain detail in even the brightest highlights.

    Finally I overexposed by two stops to get an exposure in which no shadow detail was clipped. I did take an exposure one stop over exposed but didn't end up using it in the final image.

    After careful blending using layers masks I did some additional processing for color and contrast to arrive at the final image.

    You can read the complete article on the PhotoCascadia.com blog.

    Please leave a comment or question below.

  • Announcing Two Digital Photography Processing Workshops

    I'm excited to announce two new workshops I will be offering in 2010. These one-day workshops will focus on digital workflow and improving your photo processing skills. The first workshop will cover intermediate level techniques and the second workshop will be delve into more advanced techniques. Both workshops will be held in beautiful Ashland, Oregon. Read below for more information.

    Taking Your Photo Processing To The Next Level (Intermediate)

    Bonsai Rock Sunset

    Part of Darlene Lyon Kruse Studios Workshops

    When: Saturday, August 14, 2010 9AM-5PM

    Where: Guanajuato Room, Ashland Public Library, Ashland, Oregon

    Tuition: $120.00

    Join award-winning outdoor photographer, Sean Bagshaw, for an informative day-long workshop in the art of processing images in the digital darkroom. This workshop is for those who want to expand their knowledge of Photoshop CS and learn new techniques for getting the very best out of their digital photographs.

    To register for this workshop:

    To pay by credit card, click HERE. (This is a secure site.) To pay by check: Make your check payable to Darlene Kruse, note that it is for the Post-Processing I workshop, and mail to Darlene at P. O. Box 1004, Ashland, OR 97520. Please include your email address and contact telephone number.

    This is an intermediate-level class for those who already use, or plan to use, Photoshop CS as part of their digital photography workflow. This class is appropriate for current users of Lightroom, Aperture or Photoshop Elements who want to extend their processing options through the use of Photoshop CS. It is also a great class for those who are already using Photoshop CS but would like to become more comfortable in the program, improve their current workflow, and learn more about working with adjustment layers and layer masks.

    To get the most out of this workshop, you should already know how to:

    ~Download images to your computer
    ~View and organize images in an image editor such as Lightroom, Bridge or Aperture.
    ~Open an image into Photoshop CS (download the free 30-day trial from Adobe.com if needed).
    ~Make basic adjustments to images for color, contrast, sharpness, etc.
    ~Use the basic Photoshop tools such as crop, magic wand, brush, lasso, clone, etc.

    Topics this workshop will cover:

    ~Basic RAW image adjustments before opening into Photoshop.
    ~Selecting the best color space and bit depth.
    ~Non-destructive Photoshop workflow including basic cloning, perspective control, color balance, contrast, localized creative ~adjustments and prepping images for web and print.
    ~How to understand and use layers and masks for the greatest non-destructive creative control in your image processing.
    ~Basic techniques for bringing out the light and drama in your digital images.
    ~Soft proofing for best print output.

    To register for this workshop:

    To pay by credit card, click HERE. This is a secure site.) To pay by check: Make your check payable to Darlene Kruse, note that it is for the Post-Processing I workshop, and mail to Darlene at P. O. Box 1004, Ashland, OR 97520. Please include your email address and contact telephone number.

    Taking Your Photo Processing To The Next Level (Advanced)

    Guanajuto

    Part of Darlene Lyon Kruse Studios Workshops

    When: Saturday, October 16, 2010 9AM to 5 PM

    Where: Guanajuato Room, Ashland Public Library, Ashland, Oregon

    Tuition: $120.00

    Join award-winning outdoor photographer, Sean Bagshaw, for a day-long workshop in the advanced digital photo processing techniques he uses to help make his landscape, nature and travel photographs possible. This workshop will cover advanced techniques using Photoshop CS, as well as a few other image processing programs, that give an amazing amount of creative control to photographers in expressing their artistic vision making it possible to create images that previously were not possible.

    To register for this workshop:

    To pay by credit card, click HERE. (This is a secure site.) To pay by check: Make your check payable to Darlene Kruse, note that it is for the Post-Processing II workshop, and mail to Darlene at P. O. Box 1004, Ashland, OR 97520. Please include your email address and contact telephone number.

    This is an advanced-level workshop intended for those who already use Photoshop CS to some extent and are familiar with the many of the software's tools, palettes and adjustments as well as how to work with layers and masks. This workshop is appropriate for people who have taken Sean's intermediate-level photo processing workshop and are comfortable with that information. It is also appropriate for those who use Photoshop CS on a regular basis, are familiar with layers and masks, and want to add some new techniques to their current workflow.

    To get the most out of this workshop you should already know how to:

    ~Make basic RAW image adjustments before opening into Photoshop.

    ~Select the appropriate color space and bit depth.

    ~Utilize a non-destructive Photoshop workflow including basic cloning, perspective control, color balance, contrast, localized creative adjustments and prepping images for web and print.

    ~Use layers and masks for the greatest non-destructive creative control in your image processing.

    Topics this workshop will cover:

    ~Luminosity masking for targeted tonal adjustments.

    ~Using blending modes for creative dramatic effect.

    ~Techniques for drawing viewers into an image.

    ~Non-destructive techniques for localized dodging and burning.

    ~Various techniques for blending multiple images using layer masks.

    ~Blending double processed RAW images for extended dynamic range.

    ~Blending multiple exposures for extended dynamic range.

    ~Using channel layers to create highly detailed masks for blending and selections.

    ~Comparing exposure blending with different HDR software options.

    ~Demonstration of the NIK Viveza, Color Efex Pro and Silver Efex Pro plugins.

    To register for this workshop:

    To pay by credit card, click HERE. (This is a secure site.) To pay by check: Make your check payable to Darlene Kruse, note that it is for the Post-Processing II workshop, and mail to Darlene at P. O. Box 1004, Ashland, OR 97520. Please include your email address and contact telephone number.

  • Organizing The Digital Photography Workflow

    I recently had the opportunity to take an amazing one day workshop on digital photography workflow from Mac Holbert, co-founder of Nash Editions, widely known as the world’s first digital printmaking studio focusing solely on photography. Prior to Nash Editions, Mac Holbert was the Tour Manager for the music group Crosby, Stills & Nash. He co-founded Nash Editions with Graham Nash in 1987. If you aren't familiar with Nash Editions or Mac Holbert I recommend reading this interview by John Paul Caponigro. John and Mac are both instructors with the Epson Print Academy.

    Mac Holberts's workshop revolutionized how I approach my workflow in Photoshop. While Mac knows and willingly shares a wide range of Photoshop actions, adjustments and techniques, it is his suggestions for how to organize and approach the digital photography workflow that I found most enlightening. As the saying goes, "give a man a fish and he eats for a day, teach a man to fish and he eats for life". Mac refers to specific Photoshop techniques as the fish, but a well organized and purposeful work flow as knowing how to fish. He also points out that with a program as powerful as Photoshop, there are many ways to get to any single photoshop destination, but having a well organized workflow ensures that you don't end up at the wrong destination, such as with damaged pixels or with workflow steps that can't be reversed.

    Mac emphasizes that the digital workflow should begin with adjustments that directly affect pixels (those not made on adjustment layers) and more global adjustments and then proceed toward more and more localized adjustments. He also suggests that your Photoshop layer stack be organized to reflect this progression.

    A workflow following this type of progression might go something like this: start with adjustments that affect pixels, such as cloning, noise reduction and perspective adjustments. Then proceed to global tonal and color adjustments (made with curves adjustment layers) such as setting the black point, gray point, global contrast and global brightness. After those adjustments are made it is time to start targeting smaller regions of the image that need adjusting such as regional dodging and burning and targeted tone, saturation and contrast adjustments. Finally, the workflow is finished up with specific "spot" adjustments such as manual dodging and burning, tonal adjustments, midtone enhancement, local sharpening and so on.

    Keeping the layer stack organized to reflect this progression is paramount. The following graphic is the one the Mac uses to give a basic illustration of what a well organized layer stack might look like.

    My old workflow, largely self-taught, generally allowed me to achieve what I wanted with an image, but it was highly haphazard and disorganized, and I often worked myself into corners or created hard to resolve issues. I knew that there was a better, more efficient and less damaging approach. Mac's suggetions were just what I was looking for. If you ever get the chance to attend one of Mac's workshops, through the Epson Print Academy or elsewhere, I highly recommend it.

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