Pinhole Tutorial

Aside

For people interested in recreating the sometimes stunning effects of pinhole cameras, there is a tutorial on the Ogum blog looking at how this can be done in photoshop.

Scrabo Tower – Pinhole Effect

Scrabo Tower - Pinhole Effect

Scrabo Tower – Pinhole Effect,
originally uploaded by etrusia_uk.

This blog has been a bit text-heavy of late. Heather has posted some excellent, thought provoking articles (example, example and example) and I have been slack – spending most of my time working or travelling.

In an effort to try and lighten up the blog, I am going to (irregularly) post images here – hopefully to get some feedback and constructive criticism, but if not it will cheer me up 🙂

My first choice is “Scrabo Tower” from just outside Newtownards, Northern Ireland. This is an odd little tower and I am not really sure about its history, however it is picturesque and the views around it are amazing. As this is a fake-pinhole (a picture edited to look like it was taken on an old-fashioned pinhole camera), it doesn’t really add much in the way of “colour” to the blog – but it looks nice! 🙂

[tags]Pictures, Flickr, Pinhole, Photography, WhyDontYou, Photoshop, Scrabo Tower, Digital Photography, Photo Editing, Black and White, Photos[/tags]

SAN BORJA – HDR on Flickr

SAN BORJA

SAN BORJA,
originally uploaded by werdugo.

This is a fantastic example of the good quality pictures HDR processing can produce – sadly, it is not a picture I took!

It captures a wide range of colours and light, making the picture stand out against the normal “digital” photography people have become used to.

The best bit is this picture does this without creating the strange, otherworldly impression that some HDR pictures have. While I am actually a fan of the hyper-real tone mapping effects on HDR pictures, they can be overused. For me, when a photo has lots of vegetation the HDR looks better if it is more natural.

If you have a flickr account, drop by this guy and tell him what you think of his pictures.

[tags]Flickr, HDR, Photos, Pictures, Photographs, Photography, High Dynamic Range, Photoshop, Photomatix, Picture Editing, Digital Photography, Photo Editing[/tags]

Pinhole Camera Photography

chijmes01.jpg

chijmes01.jpg,
originally uploaded by Jeff @ 8Banner Cams.

My recent visits to flickr have uncovered another new (to me anyway) source of some fantastic photography.

This time is in the “Pinhole Photography” section and by the looks of things this is legitimately pinhole – rather than the poor by comparison ones I tried with the help of photoshop.

This photo was taken with a large format (4×5″) camera and a six second exposure. The quality and effect of the photo are amazing. One of the main advantages of pinhole cameras is the massive depth of field, and here it is shown to great effect.

One day, if I win the lottery for example, I may be tempted into actually buying a pinhole camera but until then, I think I will have to make do with photoshop. Either way, if I could produce pictures like this I would be proud.

[tags]Photoshop, Pictures, Flickr, Pinhole, Pinhole Cameras, Cameras, Photos, Photography, Digital Cameras, Photo editing, Pinhole Photography, Singapore[/tags]

New Photo Collection

I have been editing some more photographs to within an inch of their lives recently and trying out a few new effects. The wonders of things you can do with Photoshop may never amaze me and, as I have said in the past, you would be mad to think the camera never lies…

[piflasa]http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/data/feed/base/user/tas.spaceholder/albumid/5095261742046817249?kind=photo&alt=rss&hl=en_US|400[/piflasa]

I will upload more to this collection as I get the chance.

HDR Photographs

Still in a holiday mood, I have been playing with Photomatix trying to convert “normal” pictures into high dynamic range pictures (HDR – read more here and here). At the moment, I am certainly not even up to the beginner standard but I have learned a few things in the last couple of hours. Simply put, HDR is taking multiple pictures of the same scene at different exposures, then combining these exposures to make a single image.

For simple HDR type images, the most common methods (on windows, Linux users get a different set of joy and I have no idea about Macs) are to use Photoshop or Photomatix. In newer versions of Photoshop you have the option to either play with layers and blend your images (can get fantastic results but can also be very hit and miss) or use the Merge to HDR option (File -> Automate -> Merge to HDR in CS3). Sadly, personally, I have never had much success with the automatic option but you might manage it.

Alternatively there is a bit of software called Photomatix (Pro costs $99, Basic is Free) which does a similar job but includes “Tone Mapping.” Peter Hasitschka’s page gives more details (along with some fantastic images) so I wont go into detail here. Needless to say, the tone mapping can give you some amazing results, although I have only been playing with this for the last 30 minutes or so. So far it is worth every penny. Continue reading

Frosty Stonehenge

Thanks to a generous employer, I am now the proud owner of Adobe Creative Studio CS 3. If I am honest, the photoshop bit is not a massive improvement over the previous two CS versions so if you have Photoshop CS or CS2 I dont think it is worth paying for the upgrade. That said, it does have some “workflow” improvements and, as a result, I was able to churn this image of Stonehenge in the winter out in a few minutes.

Frosty Stonehenge - Image retouched in Photoshop CS3

Personally, I like it. The source image was quite poor and badly exposed. This is a lot, lot better 🙂 (But then I am biased!).

[tags]Photos, Pictures, Photoshop, Stonehenge, Wiltshire, Landscapes, Digital Photography, Photo Editing, Photo Effects, Photo Software, Raves, Technology[/tags]

Pictures and Prints

It has been a while since I posted some photos here for you to, err, enjoy so it is about time the blog got livened up a little. I am planning to run off quite a few photos into real world prints using Snapfish (which is, by the way, excellent), but some of the source photos felt like they could do with the Photoshop Goodness.

I am aware of how often I say this, but it never ceases to amaze me that ten minutes spent in Photoshop can turn average pictures into wonderful creations. Now, I am not arrogant enough to say these examples are wonderful (although I think they are…) but they are certainly more eye catching than the originals.

As with most of my pictures they are taken from either National Trust or English Heritage sites. These have been resized in Advance Batch Converter, which sadly reduces the quality a little. On the off chance you would like a larger original (up to around 2760x1840px) then let me know – they are free 🙂 . As you can see, I have a tendency to get enamoured with “Lomo-Style” effects – mainly on the pictures of Stonehenge and Lulworth Cove.

castle ward - path photo Lanercost Priory Lulworth Cove Stonehenge - Lomo version

Although some people may feel that “retouching” the photo after it has been taken is cheating, I disagree, it is all part of the digital imaging process (IMHO of course). Seriously, although I have neither shares in Adobe, nor do I get advertising kickbacks from them, I honestly think anyone who has a digital camera really should get some form of image processing software and learn to use it. The great thing about photoshop is that even after two years, I am still finding new (and sometimes interesting) things you can do to spruce up a picture.

[tags]Pictures, photos, landscapes, Dorset, Lulworth Cove, Stonehenge, English Heritage, National Trust, Photographs, Photoshop, Photography, Photo Software, Photo Editing, Digital Camera, Digital Photography, Lomo, Photo Effects, Lomography[/tags]