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Photography tips

A journey in Photography and sharing of how I go about taking various types of photos. Discussions include software and camera equipment and how to make the most of your equipment in a given situation.

Post Processing - beyond the RAW

01/16/2008 22:34

I recently got a copy of Photoshop Elements 5 and have been looking at how I can use it to add to the quality of my photos. Firstly, I have been very happy with just using a RAW processor on nearly all of my photos and rarely see the need to go beyond that.

Well, Since I have the software I have been exploring some aspects of it and there is just 1 thing that I have been using on a few photos and that is the Correct Camera Distorion Filter.

The easiest way to look at this is by jumping in with an example.

Anyone who has taken a photo of a building will get an effect similar to what we see here - the top "dissapears" into the sky and it looks quite distorted.

Well, I have been able to get a different result from the same original photo

Take a close look at the vertical lines - you will see that they no nolnger converge towards the top and it looks a bit ore "natural"

Of course, you may have heard of a specialist lens called a tilt-shift lens that could do this in-camera - but they are rare and very expensive!

Now, onto the processing!

I processed the original image as usual from the RAW in Lightroom - making the necessary adjustments then saved it as a full-sized tiff image which I imported into photoshop.

In Photoshop, I then opened the filter dialogue and adjusted the little slider to my liking - trying to align the verticals in this case as close as possible to the grid overlay. Once I was happy with the adjustments I went back and needed to apply a crop to bring the image back to a square(well, rectangular) shape.

Once I had cropped it, then I saved it out once again as a new tiff image before finally resizing it to the required size and outputting a jpg image.

Now, the whole process took around 2-3 minutes extra and gave me a result that I am much happier with.

True, I usually try to keep all processing to a minimum, but I think you will agree that by doing just a little more work you can make use of the available tools and produce a photo that is closer to what you saw.

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