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Thread: Stella Shot for C&C

  1. #1
    purplehaze's Avatar
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    Stella Shot for C&C

    I was using Stella to experiment with shutter priority last week. This shot doesn't show a lot of action, but I kind of like it anyway. I have cropped on each side, but am wondering whether I should crop tighter on the left and give more space to breathe on the right. I am also wondering whether people find it too soft and the noise level unacceptable. Feel feel to make any criticism whatsoever; I'm here to learn.
    Nikon D90, 18-105 mm kit lens; 1/200 sec at f/5.6 and 400 ISO

    Stella Shot for C&C
    Last edited by purplehaze; 28th March 2011 at 01:31 AM. Reason: add EXIF data

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Hello, Janis. You captured a nice shot of your dog here. On a personal taste, I would probably recommend that you add some fill lights so that the dark areas can be brought out better. A little extra contrast probably wouldn't hurt, then throw in some extra vibrance adjustment to add more colors on the midrange. Lastly, A little more sharpness to the whole image, some lightening of the dog's iris, and a little dark vignette would complete the adjustment. Just a suggestion since I'm in overdrive having drank 3 cups of coffee right now. Want to see my adjustments to it?
    Last edited by jiro; 28th March 2011 at 03:52 AM.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Aside from Jiro's (caffeine boy) comments, it's not too dang shabby just as it sits...I would do his suggested edits because he doesn't stray often or far, but to aanswer the compositional question, I think you are near dead on, though wouldn't hurt to have a bit more foreground...just a little and a tad of a burn on his foreleg...

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by MiniChris View Post
    Aside from Jiro's (caffeine boy) comments,

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    purplehaze's Avatar
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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Thanks, Chris. No more foreground to be had, I'm afraid.

    Jiro, I am using Aperture 3 for editing, so translation is required. What do you mean by "fill light"? Are you suggesting selective brightening?

    I would very much like to see your adjustments, if you're still in overdrive. One of the ways I learn how to translate Photoshop/Lightroom to Aperture is to try to replicate their effects.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    In lightroom 3.3 we have a slider adjustment called "fill light". If I am not mistaken, it only affects the dark tones in the image compared to the "recovery" slider that only affects the highlight areas. If you are doing it inside photoshop then yes, it can be done using selective brightening by dodging effect or as we know it, inside photoshop via ACR since ACR is basically the same as the develop function in Lightroom. Here's my edit. Thanks for allowing me.

    Stella Shot for C&C
    Last edited by jiro; 28th March 2011 at 03:52 AM.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Wow, that really pops, Jiro. Thank you. I think your "fill light" may the equivalent of Aperture's "brightening". If I'm not mistaken, it only affects midtones. I will experiment. But first, how did you bring out the snow crystals in the foreground?

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    Wow, that really pops, Jiro. Thank you. I think your "fill light" may the equivalent of Aperture's "brightening". If I'm not mistaken, it only affects midtones. I will experiment. But first, how did you bring out the snow crystals in the foreground?
    Sorry, Janis. I edited my posts because I've made a mistake. The fill light adjustment only affects the dark areas not the midtones. Sorry if I initially misled you. For your next question, The recovery slider (affecting the highlights) will recover the details for you. Then, by adding the dark vignette, some additional details can now be seen on the snow crystals. Hope this helps.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Okay, Jiro. Aperture has a "black point" slider that serves as a kind of global fill adjustment. It also has a Highlights and Shadows brick for selective fine-tuning of highlights, lowlights and midtones. (I'm noting this for other Aperture users out there who may be struggling like me here in the land of Photoshop, Lightroom and Gimp) I think I might try using the selective tool on the snow crystals.

    Thank you, sir!

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    You are most welcome, mam.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    So, have I hit some of the bases, do you think?

    Stella Shot for C&C

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    So, have I hit some of the bases, do you think?
    Yes.

    Now what you have to do is decide which of the two versions best represents the picture of Stella that you have in your mind. If I met you in the street, you didn't have Stella with you and I asked you to describe her to me, which of these two images would be uppermost in your head.

    Whichever one it is = the best one!

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    Now what you have to do is decide which of the two versions best represents the picture of Stella that you have in your mind.
    Interesting you should say that, Donald. I think in fact the first one is closest to what she looks like in my mind's eye. (Soft and silky, among other things.) It's encouraging to think I may have done alright the first time around, so thank you for that. But there's no question I got quite a lot out of this exercise. My eyes learned to see a little better and I explored a bunch of tools that, up until now, I had found rather intimidating. So thanks again, Jiro. You can edit me anytime.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    Interesting you should say that, Donald. I think in fact the first one is closest to what she looks like in my mind's eye. (Soft and silky, among other things.)
    Thought that might be the case.

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    But there's no question I got quite a lot out of this exercise. My eyes learned to see a little better and I explored a bunch of tools that, up until now, I had found rather intimidating. S
    I have no doubt that you have learned a huge amount. That's the beauty, I think, of this forum - you can tap into the knoweldge of other people who are only too willing to share and support. And now you have a new arsenal of skills at your disposal that you can use in making future images. In other words, Willie has helped you climb quite a way up the learning curve.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    So, have I hit some of the bases, do you think?

    Stella Shot for C&C
    Awesome! It's almost an exact duplicate of what I did. Good job! Now, push your vision a little further by being mindful as to how your eyes scan your image. Be aware as to where it pauses while scanning the details. In my case I kept on looking at that small amount of furry leftover on the tennis ball so I cloned it out. I don't think that's the main subject so off it goes. Hope this helps. My, you are a fast learner. Cheers!

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Doh! I still have some blind spots, I see.

    One question: did you use an exposure or a gamma vignette on your version? Aperture 3 offers both; I didn't like what the gamma one did to the colour, and it appears I would have had to layer several exposure vignettes to get mine as dark as yours.

    Okay, second question, open to anyone: what is the difference between a gamma and an exposure vignette and when would you want to use each?
    Last edited by purplehaze; 29th March 2011 at 11:49 PM. Reason: correct typos

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    jiro's Avatar
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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Quote Originally Posted by purplehaze View Post
    Doh! I still have some blind spots, I see.

    One question: did you use an exposure or a gamma vignette on your version? Aperture 3 offers both; I didn't like what the gamma one did to the colour, and it appears I would have had to layer several exposure vignettes to get mine as dark as yours.
    I'm not so sure as to how the gamma vignette works but in lightroom you have a slider called post-process vignette. That's the one I used to darken the outer edges of the image. Hope this helps.

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Janis, greetings from a fellow Aperture user!

    Fill light is the same as the Shadows control in the Highlights and Shadows brick.

    An Exposure vignette reduces the exposure around the edges of the frame - like the effect you get with a lens. A gamma vignette applies a gamma curve (like using a single point in a curves adjustment to reduce the mid tones) instead. The main visual difference is that a gamma vignette will leave white areas alone.

    You can actually make a vignette stronger than the maximum value on the Intensity slider - if you click on the number to the right of the intensity slider you can type numbers greater than 1 in there (or click the up/down buttons on either side of the number).

    - Paul

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    Re: Stella Shot for C&C

    Paul!! Where have you been all my (CiC) life? Thank you!

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