March 30, 2008

Helpful Share

I've had several people ask me to post some of my pictures SOOC (straight out of camera). I had a great session with my favorite model over 2 and decided it would be a good time to share my post processing. The key to great pictures is having a good picture to start with, ie good composition, light, exposure, and focus. If any of these are lacking, photoshop unfortunately can't fix those. So I have posted 3 sets of pictures which include a sooc picture and then my usual post processing steps. I don't create my own actions but have found that combining some give me my desired look. Each are tweaked to my own liking though, I rarely run an action straight through. I'm sharing this with everybody so photographers and clients can see the time that is put into digital photography and the Art that is created. Photoshop helps to give your pictures that "wow" factor. And it does really help to have a good looking model :)

(click on the picture to view it larger)




11 comments:

Tina said...

Thanks so much for this post! I feel a lot better about exposure after seeing your SOOC...maybe I'm not as far off SOOC as I was thinking. Are you also skin smoothing?

Anonymous said...

Hi! I just stumbled across your blog last week and really enjoy your photography. I am just getting started and I don't really know a whole lot. Maybe you have shared this before, but are sunshine, pop, honey, etc. actions that you have purchased? If so, where can I get them? Thanks!!

Emily said...

I love your site, and your little munchkin is adorable!

I found your blog through Lacey's. I'm learning all about photography and am trying to get the basic's down now..and just bought Elements...I haven't quite figured it out and am planning on taking a class where I'm taking my digital classes. Anyhow, my question is....do you shoot often with your Speedlite?

I'm thinking I want to be a natural light photographer...but that I might need that on occasion? Your thoughts?

Thanks a bunch!

Dawn said...

Melissa, thanks for sharing your workflow. Your SOOC images have great exposure so I see where that is crucial for such a great end result. Do you do much detail work to the eyes or skin, or do the actions you use lighten and brighten these areas for you too? I love these portraits...so colorful and fun. --Dawn

Jen said...

Love to see your works of art - you make everyone more beautiful with your talents!

Melissa said...

Tina - I did skin smoothing on the first one but not on the other ones. i usually just use it on close ups just to make the skin look even but i try to not make it look unnatural.

Emily - I don't use my speedlite very often for normal sessions but I use it ALL the time for weddings. It does come in handy so it is a nice accessory to have.

Anon.- the names are actions, the pop is here: http://www.brendaacuncius.typepad.com/, sunshine is here: http://www.phauntactions.com/blog/, and the honey is here: www.lilyblue.com.

Dawn - I try not to overdo the eyes, it was a very overcast day so the catchlights were very soft, I did dodge them to make the catchlights stand out more but that was it. The actions usually brighten them up.

The Sorensen Family said...

Melissa,
You really are so generous. It was fun to see you SOOC. Your exposure from the beginning is good. In case you haven't notice you have a huge fan base of wanna-be's including myself LOL! Thanks again for being will to share.

The Sorensen Family said...

Ahh sorry about all the spelling/grammer errors! My kiddos are screaming in the background! I really should proof everything before I send it, LOL!

Anonymous said...

amazing work, my friend ;)

Ben & Melissa said...

Hi Melissa! Your site and Blogspot are so lovely - you're darling little girl is so precious! You are blessed with a talent for capturing the moment!

I am new to photography! Although I've always had a passion for it, I'm just this year began to pursue my hobbie! I'm shooting with a Canon 400D. and I'm taking Photography classes at a local Community College and enjoy learning so much. I did have a few questions for you...

I would love to come up with a creative header for my Blogspot, and maybe one day, a Web Site. I'm learning Photoshop Elements 6.0. Did you develop your 'logo' yourself or have it professionally designed? Any suggestions? Tutorials?

Thank you for your time! May God bless you and your family!

Hallenbergers said...

You are awesome! Thank you for sharing!!!