Poor neglected blog. It’s been so long…. life and work has been a bit of a whirlwind this month. So much for easing into 2011. No can do. The first half of the month was spent rebranding, which is still in process to some extent. But for the most part, the new look and feel has been integrated into the business. And, yes, for those of you who are patiently awaiting my new 2011 brochure, it’s coming! I do appreciate your patience as that is reworked.
So, as you may know (and how could you not if you’re on my Facebook page) my HeARTy Action Collection is due out very soon. We are hard at work putting the finishing touches to the actions, thanks to the help of some wonderful action testers. You can view THEIR edits with the new actions over on my Facebook page. So far, we’ve seen a lot of richer, vibrant edits, but keep in mind, the action sets are really dynamic as far as the possible creative looks you can achieve with them. There is most certainly something for every editing style, from deep and rich, to light and airy, to vintage or hazy or funky. It’s all in how the actions are combined. They are indeed a creative suite for the creative photo artist. As far as their release date, my best answer, vague as it may be, is SOON! I’m hoping by 1-2 weeks they’ll be flying through virtual space, landing on your computer hard drives for you to experiment, play and grow as visual artists.
And speaking of growing as artists, I wanted to share a really profound before and after that I just worked through earlier tonight in a mentoring session with one of my favorite repeat metees, Kristie Sheets of Kristie Sheets Photography located in California. Kristie sent me this underexposed jpg image to tackle tonight. I say it all the time… start with a good out of camera image and enhance, don’t fix. But, you know it happens to all of us… we get to going in a session and occasionally forget to change our camera settings and end up flubbing the exposure on an otherwise really lovely image. The location, sunlight and emotion captured was captivating and worth trying to salvage. I’m glad she saved this image. Despite the fact that I had a jpg to work on (although the original was shot RAW) we were able to utilize the adjustment brush in Lightroom to spot lift the exposure on the couple while maintaing the depth and detail of the background. The adjustment brush is awesome for this sort of situation… when you need to raise or lower exposure on just a section of the image without adjusting the exposure globally. I use it all the time. So, we lightened and color corrected the white balance in Lightroom before taking it into PS for the meat of the editing. Again, I’ll say it until my tongue falls out… USE A RAW EDITOR to get your exposure and white balance corrected rather than staggering around in Photoshop trying to check CMYK numbers and pulling every trick in the book to perfect a white balance. It’s a time suck to do it that way and always leaves you unsure and annoyed in the end. Lightroom is a saving grace for this.
OK onto the edit.
Edited in PS using blending modes and adjustment layers and a few of my upcoming actions.
Back to expanding as artists… this is what I mean. Just because we could have darkened the background, added a richer tone to the trees and water and spotlighted them right in the center… we didn’t. Sometimes breaking away from the expected, challenging yourself to try a different look is exhilarating. This image said soft, romantic, ethereal. Toning the image with warm, pinkish tones added to the ethereal feel. Playing up the light source streaming from the left side gave the light purpose and changed the dynamic of the image…. something I do so often in my editing. Light and how it’s harnessed or manipulated is crucial to dynamic imagery.
Hope you enjoyed this before and after. Please stop by Kristie’s Facebook page to view more of her artistic work.