Tuesday, November 3, 2009

{Tuesday's Tutorial} kids & family photography los angeles & ventura california

This post is geared towards my readers who are interested in photography.  I thought it would be fun to show you an image taken straight out of the camera and how spending a few minutes in PhotoShop can result in very different images.  As you can see, the SOOC (straight out of camera) image is not bad... Tristan is looking right at the camera which makes the image more engaging (I always do a happy dance when I am able to capture direct eye contact)  I love eyes.... lovely windows to the soul.... Okay, so the image is a little underexposed but that can be easily fixed.  Here is the image before....

and after:

And here is what I did to go from before to after.  In ACR, adjusted the white balance and exposure.  Then opened the image in PhotoShop and took the following steps:

1.  Ran a defog action to get rid of haze (digital cameras tend to make your photos look fuzzy, or foggy, like they have a film over them.)
2.  Created a new layer and adjusted the highlight (7%) and shadow (2%).
3.  Flattened image and ran the PowderRoom action from Coffeeshop; brightened the eyes just a touch, and softened the skin slightly.
4.  Used Selective Color to lower the yellow and magenta cast.
5.  Lightened/brightened the right side of the face.
6.  Cleaned up the dark circles under eyes by using the Patch tool.  I usually create a new layer, do the work on cleaning up the dark circles and then adjust the layer down to 50% for a more natural appearance.
7.  At this point, I thought the image was a bit on the cool side, so I added a warm Photo Filter at 15%.
8.  Resized and sharpened for web.

That's it!  It took around 3-4 minutes to do the above.  By the way, it's taking me much, much longer to write out the steps!  I don't have a "formula" or one size fits all approach to my post processing, but I do generally tend to brighten the eyes and the overall image.  Sometimes I like a nice clean look and other times, I favor the artsy look.... it just really depends on the image.  And now, just for fun, I ran a few of my favorite actions to show you more variations of the same image.  Be sure to leave a comment and let me know if you enjoyed today's post!

This has sort of a vintage look to it feels more modern than old fashioned.

This has an urban, cross processed feel to it.  Cross processing is the procedure of deliberately processing photographic film in a chemical solution intended for a different type of film.  It tends to spice up the photograph and you end up with some very funky effects.

This has a little more color and depth than the original version.

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