Most of the post processing I do on YLF photos is pretty light, like the example I showed earlier in the week. But sometimes I have to do a lot more to get the right image. There was a good example in today's post, so I thought I'd show a quick before and after.
In this case the original was a photo I took to get a sense of the light in Takashimaya, so I never dreamed we'd be using it on the blog. But as it turned out, this was the only photo I had of Angie's outfit that day, so it had to do.
The main corrections were...
Exposure: The camera chose an exposure for the brightly lit display case and not for Angie. I actually over-exposed a little to make the outfit details more visible.
White balance: The original has a yellow cast due to the unnatural light.
Removing noise: Angie is in the dark, noisy part of the image.
The end result looks pretty reasonable, considering.
(If you are reading this post on the forum, try viewing it on my lookfab blog to see a better side by side comparison).
Several people have asked me about my approach with the photos, so I'm going to use my lookfab blog to document aspects of the workflow. I'm kicking off with the simple post processing that I did for one of the photos in today's post on Angie's outfit for the Tokyo wedding.
My primary goal with outfit shots is to accurately capture how the scene looked to me when I took the photos. So I do want to faithfully represent the colors, but I will also use post processing to get the right "feel" into the picture.
Original Photo: I always shoot in aperture priority mode (more on that in the future). I let the camera choose the exposure. "Exposure" is the amount of time the camera needs to keep the shutter open to get enough light to make the picture. For dark scenes, the camera needs more time. For bright scenes, it needs less.
Adjust Exposure: The camera under-exposed Angie because the bright trench made it think there was more light in the scene than there actually was. I can easily correct that in the first step of post processing on my Mac, raising the exposure a little, effectively brightening the image.
Rotate & Crop: First, a small rotation to correct the horizon because I have an aversion to slightly rotated scenes (intentionally rotated shots can be quite nice). Second, a slight crop to frame Angie a little better.
Add Drama: Finally, a subtle filter that adds a touch of drama to the shot. In this case I am just overlaying 10% of a black and white version of the image with the original.
I chose this as the first example because these steps are very typical of what I do for photos on YLF. There are other examples where the processing is much more extreme (for example, when I have to deal with white balance issues).
(By the way, if you are reading this post in the YLF forum, try viewing it in my lookfab blog to get a better side-by-side look at the different stages. The differences are quite subtle.)