Weeks 7 & 8 of 52

Week 7’s portrait was taken on last Saturday’s photography course, shot with a single light source in a studio. Paul, the course tutor, told us he would convince us studio lighting was better than natural lighting by the end of the day.  And he did.

We used combinations of one light source and reflectors, and the different moods and effects you can create even with limited kit is impressive. I’ve since bought a set of reflectors after seeing how many different effects you can get from them. This shot was taken using a beauty box on its own (no reflector); the dark shadows combined with Peter’s serious expression make a moody shot.  And you wouldn’t guess it was taken against a white background.

Peter with beauty box and white background webWeek 8 was taken by the tram and bus stops at Piccadilly Gardens in Manchester, using a tripod and a 30 second exposure. I’ve slightly cropped it, boosted the vibrancy, warmed it up and added a bit of sharpening. On the right is the original shot.

 

 

 

Week 6 of 52: lightening eyes and smoothing skin

Last week’s photo is one I took a few weeks ago. For this one I:

  • Kept it in black & white, which was how I edited it for the 365 project. I think it has a much nicer feel than the original colour photo, and the whiteboard edge in the background is less obvious in b&w.
  • Lightened the whole image a bit in Camera Raw. While some of the background is a bit blown out, the face was a little dark on one side, despite my makeshift paper reflector (note to self – buy a proper reflector). I don’t usually do edits in Raw as I tend to stick to Photoshop, but thought I might as well try it as an experiment. I think it worked okay.
  • Lightened the eyes to make them whiter – being careful not to overdo it, which I did initially. In fact, I’m still not sure whether they’re a bit too bright…
  • Softened the skin using layers.

Here are the before and after pictures, just to prove there’s a difference. And big thanks to Kelly for being this week’s muse 🙂

 

Photos for weeks 1-5 of 2015

For the first few weeks of this year I’ve been trying to master layers and effects by editing and processing my photos. So far I’ve used layers to reposition elements, played around a bit with colour and blur, and used layers to create a multiple photo effect. I think the poppies is probably my favourite so far.

They’re all photos from 2014 or earlier, except the first one which was a new photo of a plastic toy found in a Christmas cracker, then pocketed and photographed for this project.

01 plastic lobster snowflake web 02 London docks creative blur web 03 Millie pop art web 04 Brighton beach photo joiner web 05 colour pop poppies web

Finally back on track

Well, I’m finally up to date with my 52 week project. If I do it again next year, never mind just taking the pictures every week, I really need to stay on top of the selecting and editing. Far too many decisions to make all at once when you’re months behind and trying to catch up so you can put them on your blog!