In my Maine Islands digital photography workshop, Andrew Nixon explored creating a dynamic tension between the still and the moving. He typically uses long exposures of moving subjects. But he tried a few new twists on his standard practices, like moving the camera. While he explored other ideas and tried many new things, he always returned to the same theme which gave his images a distinctive quality that stood out from his peers.

What themes make your images distinctive?
What experiments will help you explore and develop this further?

Find out more about Andrew Nixon here.

Read more in my creativity lessons.
Find out more about my Maine Islands digital photography workshop here.
Learn more in my digital photography workshops.

Capture Sharpening

June 28, 2011 | 2 Comments |

Optimal image sharpening is best done in three stages— capture (do it during RAW conversion), creative (do it in Photoshop) and output (automate it).

Capture sharpening benefits all images. It compensates for inherent deficiencies in optical and capture systems. All lenses and sensors have specific characteristics and deficiencies. They don’t all have the same characteristics or deficiencies.

To speed your workflow, default settings for a best starting point for capture sharpening can be determined for all images created with the same lens/chip combination and saved for subsequent use. To optimally sharpen an image, you’ll need to modify these settings to factor in additional considerations—variances in noise (ISO, exposure duration, temperature), noise-reduction settings and the frequencies of detail (low/smooth to high/fine texture) in an image.

Capture sharpening is best done during RAW file conversion. (Do it after scanning for analog originals.) I recommend importing your RAW files into Photoshop as Smart Objects. If you do this, you quickly can access specific sharpening and noise-reduction settings simply by double-clicking the image layer. At the same time, you’ll also be able to take advantage of any updates in detail rendering (noise reduction and sharpening) with the click of a button.

Capture sharpening is typically done globally and uniformly to all areas of an image, but on-the-fly masking routines are recommended for reducing and removing sharpening effects, such as halos on contours and noise in low-frequency or smooth image areas.

When performing capture sharpening, err on the conservative side and avoid producing unwanted artifacts …

Read more on Digital Photo Pro.

Read more in my digital photography and digital printing ebooks.

Learn more in my digital photography and digital printing workshops.

“Where do you go to access over 10,000 unique Photoshop presets, templates, tutorials, plug-ins and more? Visit Photoshop Exchange, the Adobe hosted website for customers who want to discover and share Photoshop content with each other. They recently crossed the 10,000th item milestone, adding 600 new submissions since January. The majority of the content is free, and those few paid pieces of content average about $4.

If you’re looking for inspiration, or just want to try out some new styles, effects or practically anything else that can be customized in Photoshop, you will find Actions (51% of Exchange’s content), followed by Styles (15%) and Brushes (10%), as well as shapes, tutorials and patterns, and many elaborate and useful Templates (.PSD files, ranging from Web components and complete site designs, brochures, flyers, 3D presentation graphics, print ads and the like), which can save you time and even help you explore how advanced users build complex and beautiful files.”

Visit Photoshop Exchange here.

Darius Himes clearly describes the judging criteria for Blurb’s PBN contest.

Read more about Blurb’s PBN contest here.

Find Darius Himes book Publish Your Photography Book here.

Visit Darius Himes’ website here.

Learn more in my bookmaking resources here.

Darius Himes and Mary Virginia Swanson’s book Publish Your Photography Book offers clear cogent advice that will help anyone interested in navigating the waters of book publishing. This is true whether your goal is to work with a major publisher or to self-publish or both.

The book covers everything you need to know; concept and mission, financing and contract negotiation, editing and sequencing, design and production, marketing and more.

The countless case studies in this book give it a flair unlike any other. David Maisel, Daniel Milnor, Alec Soth, and Alex Webb are just a few.

The voices of experts in the industry give this volume a broad diversity you’re unlikely to find anywhere else. Eileen Gittens (Blurb), Michelle Dunn Marsh (Aperture/Chronicle), Rixon Reed (PhotoEye) are just a few.

I can’t think of a better duo than Himes and Swanson to help you understand the world of book publishing.

I can’t recommend this book more highly.

Find Publish Your Photography Book here.

Visit Darius Himes’ website here.

Visit Mary Virginia Swanson’s website here.

Find more bookmaking resources here.


What does it take to be a great workshop leader? The same things that it takes to be a great leader in any field.

A great leader communicates passionately. Then they fan the flames of other people’s passions. The one thing you don’t want to do with passion is hide it. Passion creates energy, commitment, and endurance. Passion is contagious.

A great leader walks his talk. Leaders demonstrate. They tell you the rules of the game and they also show you when exceptions prove the rules. It’s important to see how theory is modified by practice. It’s even more important to see when and how practice is customized by individuals.

A great leader offers guidance and direction. Leaders share why they do what they do and show what’s worked for them. Then they ask a set of guiding questions that help others frame what’s most relevant to individuals. Leaders help others frame their own unique set of guiding questions in ways that are most personally relevant.

A great leader listens. Different people want and need different things at different times. Leaders ask questions and look at results to find out what other people want and need most. Leaders don’t give other people their voice, they help others make their own voices stronger. Leaders understand that different people want different results.

A great leader helps others activate all their resources. Leaders help others consolidate and build upon their core strengths. You start with where you are and you move to where you want to be. You develop the vision to know where you want to go and the skills to get there. Leaders know that if you want to raise the level of your game, you need to improve both your inner game and your outer game.

A great leader recognizes and reveals group resources. Every group has a unique set of resources, because every group is a collection of unique individuals. Leaders bring out the often hidden resources within a group. When they do this, everyone becomes both a student and a teacher; everyone learns more, including the leader.

A great leader expands other people’s comfort zone. By inspiring people with more possibilities and demonstrating tangible results, leaders show others what’s possible. They challenge other people to periodically get out of their comfort zones and try new things. Conscious experimentation is a key to continued success.

A great leader empowers other people. Leaders offer optimum ways of thinking and working. They think clearly. They act decisively. They do this because they have experience. And, they share their experience to help others become more personally fulfilled.

A great leader brings all of their resources with them (passion, philosophy, history, education, connections, technique, tools, results), ready to make the most of every moment – and every individual.

So, being a great digital photography workshop leader involves far more than making sure people get to great locations at great times. (Of course, that’s really important too!)

 

Find out what people say about my workshops.

Learn more in my digital photography and digital printing workshops.


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