Things have not gone quite as planned. Nothing disastrous, just other things that have arisen along the way, with some additional work that I have been doing on my website.
And some new ideas from things that I have learnt recently. The new ideas have changed my plans going forward, hopefully for the better.
There are things that I want to do, and things that I was planning on doing that I will be deferring for very good reasons.
The latest rethink
I am therefore having a bit of a rethink about the content of my photography blog and what I am going to be doing over the next three months.
My photography blog
My photography blog is still the core of my photography business, being the daily update of content on my website which gets shared into the outside world on a daily basis.
And to be brutally honest the core of my SEO work. One day I will rank highly in Google for the search term photography blogger!
Whats coming up on my photography blog in April then?
The completion of the editing of my Santorini photos. As mentioned on my blog the other day, Lightroom appears to be behaving itself much better these days which is great news for all of us Lightroom users, and there are a lot of us.
I ordered 16GB of RAM from Crucial the other day, which I will be fitting myself. With this doubling of the memory in my Dell PC I should be benefitting from the latest performance increases introduced in recent versions of Lightroom Classic, now on version 7.3.
I decided to leave the image editing until I had plucked up the courage to order the additional RAM. At the time of writing this I have ordered it, have received it, all I need to do now is pop it in my PC. I don’t want to say anymore as I don’t want to tempt fate.
My hope is that with the new external hard drive, the significant clean up of the files on my PC, the speed improvements in Lightroom and the increased memory in my Dell PC that I will find photo editing a joy once again.
And if this works a new SSD will be ordered next month – one IT upgrade at a time!
And the image processing I will be doing?
This is the schedule of sets of travel photography images that I want to produce
I want to carry on with my travel photography work, which is an area of significant interest to me going forward.
To be honest if I can make a living as a travel photographer I would be quite happy! And I could easily combine my photography with writing to achieve my ultimate aim - travel photographer and travel blogger!
New web page
Staying with the travel photography theme, I will be adding a new set of 12 images to that web page, with optimised images but no text. Lets see how that performs along with everything else I am doing. When I say perform I mean in SEO terms – do I need to do any more work or is the metadata on the images combined with the other things I am doing all that I need to do?
This is a trial of how I produce web pages in the future, which will hopefully transform how I work.
Updates to my website pages
In addition once all the computer changes are in place I want to add new images to each and every page of my website.
Yes - every page.
Why? I have just worked out that I can automate the import of Lightroom Metadata into my Squarespace website. This is a good time to do this, and I have scheduled time each week to go through my pages one by one and renew all the images. They may be the same images as are already there, but with the metadata rewritten and imported into the correct field on my website for consistent optimisation.
And I have been waiting until the time it takes to do such work is less, which is right now for the reasons above.
And while I am there I am going to review the metadata on each page and update it – this is quite a quick job now that I know what I want in these fields – it makes sense to do this at the same time as the images.
The metadata will reflect the content of the image metadata and the keywords pertinent to each and every page.
And the good thing is that all the images will be prepared for publication on any external channels, as all the metadata will be there.
My website needs a refresh in places!
I have looked at some of the older pages and they are looking dated. I have updated a lot of the images on many of my web pages, but never finished this exercise properly.
There is the inevitable additional material that this exercise will produce which will feed directly into my photography blog – all the bits working together nicely.
Page text and content will be reviewed at the same time, but not actioned yet.
I will continue with some back of house website work, and will be trialling this in conjunction with a variety of web page constructions and contents.
I am hoping that other things that I am doing will negate the need for lots of additional work, but this is something for long into the future, possibly next year.
Is the work I am doing with my blog and website working?
I think so - I am experiencing a significant increase in traffic to my website – my target is to achieve 1,000 visitors per month by the end of the year – at this rate I might reach this target sooner.
I am also experiencing an increase in enquiries – this is the real benchmark. If I get 10,000 visitors to my website but no enquiries so what?
The content of my blog posts
I will also be continuing with my regular varied set of blog posts about all things photography. The mix of posts will include
- Long in depth posts
- Information about articles being published on Improve Photography and other websites
- Images old and new
- Image processing
- Business news
- Website news
- Things that have happened to me that others might find of interest
- And anything else that fits in with my photography business and the world of photography in general
Planning my work
One other bit of news is that I have now allocated half hour chunks of time to specific tasks in the week. I am trying a new approach to getting things done, having successfully transformed the former nightmare that was emails.
New resources that I recommend
How to be a Productivity Ninja – Graham Allcot
Crushing It! How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business And Influence – And How You can Too - Gary Vaynerchuk
And my next piece of light reading
One final point for today which has just come to me as I finish writing this post is this.
What percentage of time in a photography business is spent taking photos? In my case I would guess 10%. 20% on a good week.
Blimey. I never thought it would be like this. But the truth is that I really do enjoy all this other stuff.
I love taking photos, and processing them in Lightroom. I get a real buzz when I receive feedback from a client – that is the best feeling.
And I am enjoying the writing about photography and my photography work – the more I do it the more I enjoy it, and hopefully the better I become.
Now its time to cross my fingers, install that RAM and get back to those pictures of Santorini.
Rick McEvoy Photography
There are 17 different looks in the black and white profiles in Lightroom. And you can view them very quickly by just hovering over them.
I have to say I am loving this change in Lightroom Classic 7.3, and am looking forward to playing around with these black and white “profiles” on a variety of images.
Will this new feature in Lightroom sort my black and white image processing software problem out?
Well hopefully it willl - if I can keep this all in Lightroom then great - this will make life much easier for me.
I used to love Nik Silver Efex Pro, but this was killed off by Google last year. It is being revived by DxO in 2018 which will be interesting!
I have just added myself to the DxO mailing list - lets see what they come up with.
In the meantime I am going to have a good old play with producing black and white photos in Lightroom - I will post some photos once I have done them.
Rick McEvoy Photography
I set all the images as rejects in the 2008 Collection. I have removed that flag. There are a couple of reasons why.
Firstly, I guess I am impatient. When I have decided I am going to delete some images I want to do it there and then. And I do not want to decide to delete some images then find that I have lost the selection later.
There is no way I can delete the rejects out of 3116 images in one go at the end.
So I have removed the rejected flag. And now I am back to pick or reject, or on my IPad swipe up to pick and down to reject.
Another issue was that it took a while to get rid of the first 200 images. I had decided that 200 images needed deleting, but could not hit delete as all the other pictures from 2008 were selected as rejects, so I went to the first image I had not reviewed, and then scrolled down to the last image and selected all of these and removed the reject flag.
That left just the rejected images which I had decided were rejects.
So my plan did not work.
Which is fine.
We all have to try these things.
And now I am going to continue with my image culling. I am going to work by logical collections of images, say of a trip, or a single shoot. Just do them one by one, then hit delete.
And that way I will go through this big chunk of my Lightroom Catalogue in a logical order, breaking the task down into logical manageable chunks.
My target is to reduce the number of images by a half, and to have 5% of images to edit out of that lot.
This will mean I am going from 3116 images in no order whatsoever to circa 1500 images sorted, rated and keyworded, and no more than 75 images to edit.
That is my target, lets see what happens.
Sorry that this seems to be dragging on, but this is something you only do once, and is rather important!
Rick McEvoy Photography – lost in Lightroom!
Wednesday 14th December 2016
This was always going to be a challenge. 3119 images. And I wanted to go through them in one go. I guessed that is not going to happen, and that I would have to do this in bits. I have too much else to do at the moment.
So this was my approach.
Firstly, I added all the images to a Collection called imaginatively 2008. Well it works for me.
Next I synced this Collection with Lightroom Mobile.
Now I have this collection available on my phone, IPad and on the web through the Lightroom Mobile browser.
Side note – or point of digression more like!
I have 33,393 image synced in Lightroom Mobile, which is incredible. I can access the Smart Previews of all of these images on my phone!
Sorry – I just find that amazing.
Where was I? Oh yes.
Next I selected all the images in the collection, and pressed X. I rejected every image. This meant that when I went though the images all I had to do was to select an image as a pick and move on to the next image.
That’s all. Nice and easy.
The problem is that I had to do this 3119 times!
Looking ahead 2009 will be a piece of cake – only 2645 images.
Once all this was done I could go through the images anywhere, so I decided to set aside a day when I would endeavour to get from start to finish in that day. Over the course of the day.
This is what I was looking for.
To reject rubbish.
To get rid of duplicate images, old edits, copies, that sort of thing.
To only have images that I want to do something with, or personal stuff I want to keep.
Having done the initial cull, I need to then do the following.
Rate the images with stars, using my rating system.
- 0 stars – unrated
- 1 star – to sort
- 2 stars – no edit
- 3 stars – to edit
- 4 stars – edited
- 5 stars – edited best
I also need to keyword every image.
And then, only then, I can play with the images.
Ok ok I know – I will do the first cull, get bored and start editing stuff. Just like I did with 2006 and 2007. I have still have not keyworded these images, nor rated them. I just jumped in impatiently and started editing stuff.
This is how I am though. That is the good stuff.
This is my plan for organising my images in Lightroom, one year at a time. Pop back to my blog in the next couple of days to see how I got on….
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Friday 9th December 2016
Hmmm. Which way to go with this one. One thing I can promise is that this will be the final edit of this picture. I have already started on the next picture and am excited to publish my next new piece of landscape photography work.
Back to the image on this post, which is the black and white version of the image posted yesterday.
And no digressions today, I promise. Apart from that digression….
This is the process I followed in Nik Silver Efex Pro to produce this image.
I scrolled through the presets. Full Contrast and Structure is the last one in my favourite presets (you can assign favourites so you don’t have to go through all the presets, some of which I have never used – far too funky for me!). . I got down to this preset and that was that. Instant choice. Loving the effect. Preset done and a great start to the production of this black and white image.
My current favourite thing to do. The green filter gave the image a bit of a dreamy feeling, which is what I was, well I cant say looking for, but having seen this effect I can say I was hoping for.
The blue filter made it look completely different. Very very different.
I want the light on the floor and through the trees to be bright. Meaning the rest of the image needs to be dark. Lens Falloff 3 did the job here nicely.
The final piece of my black and white production jigsaw. A big boost of the Dynamic Brightness. 74%. Brightened up everything nicely.
That's it for this image. I have too many new images that I want to work on.
One final bit of housekeeping in Lightroom was to remove some of the edits. I don’t need them all so they just confuse. The two final edits I assigned a 5 star rating, and also a pick flag to be clear.
Oh yes and I went back to the import folder and actually keyworded the images. I have been posting images without keywords recently which is not a good habit to get into.
Tomorrow on my blog I am going straight to the final (colour) edit of another brand new picture of the New Forest. And this image I am liking even more than the one you see above. And the black and white image will follow on nicely on Friday, leading me into picking my image of the week for this week.
Thanks for reading this post, and I hope you are enjoying my new landscape photography work.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Friday 18th November 2016
This is the full edit of the picture I posted the RAW file and the quick edit of earlier. This is exactly the same image.
Look at the transformation achieved by processing the image in Lightroom.
Much better than the quick edit.
Well you'd hope so wouldn't you - I would be disappointed if three clicks did a better job than my hand edit of the image.
This is an edit of the correctly exposed first image. Just a single image.
I like the brightness in this picture. I wanted the light to be bright and striking,
So happy as I am with this picture, there is more.......
Sorry to bore you but there are two more versions to go. Tomorrow is the black and white version. Well you knew I would be doing a black and white version didn't you?
If not where have you been?
And then finally on Monday morning I will be posting the final portfolio image. I will write about that on Monday. Well I cant write about it yet as I haven't produced it yet??
And to finish off I will put the RAW and finished image next to each other so we can all marvel at what is possible in Lightroom (and Photoshop if I go there as well).
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Saturday 12th November 2016
Another completely different image, this is the amazing site of hundreds and hundreds of barrels. I have written about the image capture before, so for this post I will be concentrating on the image processing in Nik Silver Efex Pro.
I have mentioned it before but I will mention it again. The Nik Collection is free to download and use from Google. Yes, great free software from Google.
You can download the software from the following link
I recommend that you download this software collection and have a play with it. It is free to download and free to use. There are no time restrictions. It is just free. I do not know how longs Google will support the software but the black and white conversion software, Nik Silver Efex Pro, is very powerful and very easy to use.
This is all I use for my black and white conversions.
And typically all I do is the following.
- Dynamic Brightness
I do not need to do any more to get great black and white images. I process fully edited images using this plugin to give me a black and white alternative. I am doing this to all my portfolio images, and do a couple of black and white versions of all my commercial work to give my clients something different.
The software really is easy to use, and if all you do is what I do I am sure you will get great black and white images you are happy with as well.
This is what I did to produce this image, which was taken using an ISO of 25,600 using my trusty Canon 6D.
The preset was Fine Art Process. This was an instant decision once I had scrolled through the presets. Sometimes it is an instant decision, sometimes it takes longer.
The filters were interesting. Because of the unusual lighting the red, yellow and orange filters did virtually the same thing. The green and blue gave completely different effects though which I did not like.
And that is that. Done.
Producing great black and white images does not have to be complicated!
A change of subject matter tomorrow on my blog – make sure you come back!
Rick McEvoy photography Blog
Monday 10th October 2016
This is another interior photography shot from my portfolio which is going to get the black and white conversion treatment.
This picture was taken for the architect. The kitchen is in a recently constructed private housing development in Southampton.
This could actually be a product shot for the kitchen supplier and installer, Lanzet.
I like the clinical modern feel of this image in colour, and think this will work well in black and white.
So here goes with another Nik Silver Efex Pro black and white conversion.
Firstly I select the image in Adobe Lightroom then right click, then select edit in Nik Silver Efex Pro. Then I have to select the image with Lightroom adjustments, then a new Tif file is created which is then opened in Nik Silver Efex Pro.
Apologies if you feel I am repeating myself but people are regularly visiting my way blog so I want to keep everyone in the picture (absolutely no pun intended there!).
As ever I look at the default preset then scroll down through my favourite presets. I want this image to accentuate the tones and sharpness within the image. Those bright brand new LED lights give a very crisp light, accentuated by all those modern materials.
Yes I really am a fan of buildings!,
So I ended up with the preset called Full Contrast and Structure. A particular favourite of mine. It does just what I want the preset to do.
Next is the filters. They really give different effects to interior photography shots. I chose the Yellow filter which carried on the good work of the preset.
And after that nothing.
Well I say nothing, I have to save the image back into Lightroom by clicking, erm save.
A vignette would not work with such subject matter, and I did not feel anything more was needed so another image in my black and white portfolio. And I like this one and am happy to have it in my black and white portfolio.
Make sure you pop back to my blog tomorrow to see another new black and white image, and thanks for reading this post today. Please contact me with any questions you may have via my website.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Tuesday 4th October
This is my second favourite picture of The Shard. The view looking up from the ground. The plane helps and for me places this spectacular
picture of a skyscraper in London.
The Shard is a fascinating building.
The structure is very modern, hard and graphic. A black and white picture should work really well, as these are elements that black and white photography naturally works with really well.
The colour image works well. I have made the image punchy and contrasty. I need my black and white processing in Nik Silver Efex Pro to continue this good work.
Full contrast and structure
Dynamic brightness + 24%
Vignette lens fall off 1
That is all I did. I can produce great black and white images using the Nik software so so quickly. Every photo shoot I do I convert a couple of images into black and white versions. Sometimes all I do is add a preset and save back to Lightroom. I am spending more time on these black and white images as working in a black and white portfolio, but still not a huge amount of time. I write about my processing as I do it which obviously takes longer, but I would be surprised if any image took more than 5 minutes of straight editing time.
If you haven't tried the Nik Collection you can download it for free at https://www.google.com/nikcollection/
Yes you heard me right. Free software from Google. Free great software from Google.
And as well as The black and white software there are lots of other cool things to try out, including colour effects and HDR.
It is well worth giving a go – you never know what will work for you.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Tuesday 27th September 2016
The stunning Duomo in Florence
Now this is a stunning building. Enormous. Breathtakingly striking. And big. Very big.
The front façade is difficult to photograph purely because of its scale and where it is located.
This image was included in my February Portfolio, with one comment, which was that the building was too vertical. It did not look natural. So for this image I have reduced the vertical correction slightly, making it look more like the building you see when you are there. I know it is not technically perfect, but let's be honest – who cares about the technical perfection of a shot?
That's it really. No-one else cares.
And the other thing about this image is that the people are still in the image. Two reasons. Firstly, I did not get there early enough to photograph the Duomo at sunrise, and was not able to photograph the building in the evening after everyone had gone, if there ever is such a time, as I was on my holidays.
Secondly, can I be bothered removing all those people on Photoshop?
No. I can't.
If you visit the Duomo in Florence there will probably be people there. So that is what I captured and am showing in this image. I can't imagine a time when it is ever deserted there. I would like to go back in the winter and see though. That is another subject which I will not drift into now though……
The people give the building scale – people are great for that, so they are not always a problem.
This is the final edit of this image. As well as correcting the vertical issue, I changed the aspect, another cool feature in the Lightroom Transform Panel. The building just looked too square for me, so this adjustment has helped. Again it is all about the look of the image, to a large extent how I get here doesn't matter. All anyone cares about is the look of the image.
Next a decent amount of vignette was added.
And that was it. Job done. Happy.
Portfolio nearly done!
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Wednesday 7th September 2016
I have to include one of these shots. I have photographed quite a few of the great European Cathedrals. As an interior photographer I love these awesome buildings.
I photograph buildings like this in my holidays for pleasure.
Firstly I want to talk about the image processing in Adobe Lightroom. And I know this is going to be great in black and white.
This is a three shot bracketed HDR image. I have merged together the bracketed images (2 stop over and 2 stop under) in Lightroom using the Merge to HDR feature.
I want this image to show the scale, textures, colours and feel of this magnificent space.
This image has been processed in Adobe Lightroom only.
White balance was a tricky one. This is why an accurate monitor, correctly balanced, is important. I went with the Fluorescent white balance preset- it just looked the best - then moved the temperature slider a bit to the right. Do I care about the numbers here? No. Just how the image looks.
Other settings as follows in the “Basic Panel” of Lightroom.
- Exposure -0.48
- Contrast +45
- Highlights -79
- Shadows +70
- Whites +1
- Blacks +16
- Clarity +93
- Vibrancy +38
- Saturation +0
Apart from this I corrected the verticals, well I centered the image correctly, and there was no more to do. Do I want to correct these verticals? Of course not. When I am stood in Bordeaux Cathedral and look up this is what I see. So the view is pretty much the view.
Sharpening is done as an import preset. Again I know what works for me and my images so I don't worry about this either.
I did do 2 local adjustments to this image.
The adjustments above ar called global adjustments, which are applied to the whole of the image.
Local adjustments are to specie parts of an image.
Firstly, I selected the shadows in the arches at low level, and brought out the content in these areas using the dodge brush. If you select the dodge brush it gives you a preset of +0.3. You can change this and add anything else you want to make your own custom adjustment. Mine was as follows
- Exposure +.48
- Highlights +45
- Shadows +50
The other local adjustment was to the ceiling, which I wanted to lighten And make more vivid.
- Exposure +.25
- Shadows +26
- Clarity +55.
Finally I added a vignette to the image.
And that is the processing done.
A quick word on image capture.
Well it's easy if that is what is in front of you. Just point your camera and press the shutter. Just kidding.
This is a bracketed shot. I was not able to capture all the highlights in the windows, and all the detail and texture in the shadows, in a single image. My Canon 6D is not capable of that. Neither is any other camera yet.
Using the auto-bracket feature on my Canon 6D I took three images at the same time.
The first exposure was taken at 1/80th second, F8, ISO1000. I had to shoot handheld hence the high ISO but no noise which is great. The next two shots were two stop under (1/320th of a second) and two stop over (1/20th second) exposed shots, both taken at F8 in AV Mode on my Canon 6D. The two stop under and two stop over exposed shots were the ones used to create this image.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Friday 2nd September 2016
Bournemouth University – picture of the new floor in the SportBU hall - another new Inge for my interior photography portfolio
Another commercial interior photography shot taken for the client, Bournemouth University.
It is important to me that my portfolio is consistent, but also contains a variety of subjects. As I have said before, my portfolio is made up of to sets of images
Architectural photography of the exteriors of buildings
Interior photography of a wide variety of internal spaces
Most of the images are commercial ones, with a few personal images. Yes I even photograph buildings in my spare time!
This picture of the new sports hall flooring at Bournemouth University was a record shot of the brand new Gerfloor flooring, with bespoke markings to cater for all the activities of SportBU.
The hall floor was refurbished as part of a complete overhaul of the fitness suite at the University.
The image was taken from a MEWP (mobile elevated work platform) immediately after the laying of the floor. The MEWP was parked in a corner by an external access door. The MEWP had been literally driven in (onto protection to the floor) and parked just inside the doors. I had one chance to photograph this brand new sports floor before it was used, and only one viewpoint from which to photograph it.
The view you see in this image.
This picture was captured using my Canon 5D with Canon 17-40mm lens at 17mm. ISO was 400, with a brave shutter speed of 1/20th of a second on a MEWP and an aperture of F8.
The original client edit image has had the following additional work carried out in Lightroom.
- Exposure increased from 0.27 to +.71
- Contrast increased from -7 to +19
- Highlights reduce to -70
- Shadows increased to +57
- Whites +3
- Blacks -33
(I let Lightroom work these out for me – just press shift then double click on the sliders).
- Clarity increased to +55
- Vibrancy +19
- Sharpness increased to 84
- Vignette -5
What do these numbers mean I hear you ask? Check out my new series of articles all about Lightroom – telling you everything you need to know from the very beginning.
Coming soon to my Blog at www.rickmcevoyphotography.co.uk/blog
And that was it. All done in Lightroom.
All I have done is make the image brighter, bolder and sharper
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Monday 29th August 2016
More of my work as an interior photographer in another great Dorset private residence – one with a very cool swimming pool.
Another fantastic private house. Another great photography job. This commission was photographing a house for the owners prior to them marketing it for sale. This is why I love photography. I love buildings. They fascinate me. And my photography has given me numerous opportunities to visit buildings most people aren't lucky enough even to know about.
Like a house with a separate swimming pool!
This was a great space to photograph. I wanted the water, the reflections and the feeling of light and space from all those opening doors.
So a low level shot was called for.
Lying on the floor – that low.
I took a few shots of this great room, but this is my favourite picture, capturing all the parts of the scene I wanted.
I took the white balance from the first image in this room, where I laid a grey card on the floor. In Lightroom all I needed to do was set the white balance by clicking on the grey card in the image, then simply copying and pasting the white balance settings to this image.
White balance does not have to be difficult! And this gave me the correct starting point for this image.
The next job normally is to sort the verticals and horizontals.
The image is correctly white balanced, and straight and true.
Next is working through the basic panel.
I dropped the highlights to -79, and boosted the shadows to 100.
I added contrast +36
Then I added an early vignette, just -14, as I needed To see the end point before the next adjustment, which was to lighten the pool using the dodge tool. I added a lump of clarity to this mask, and boosted the shadows.
Next I lightened up the ceiling using a graduated filter with an increase of 1 stop
I then warmed the image up as it was looking too cold, moving the temperature slider to 4143. I still needed to correct the white balance at the beginning as I needed the right starting point.
Next I boosted the blues, darkened them a bit, then toned down the greens which were too vibrant.
Last adjustment was to lighten the internal face of the walls to brighten them.
No Photoshop required – just Lightroom.
This was a single image, taken on my Canon 5D with Canon 17-40mm lens in the days before I knew abut HDR! I have absolutely no doubt that if I took this image now I would take three bracketed shots and merge them (well two of them) in Lightroom.
But the image is strong, meaning it works well.
I have said this before and I will say it yet again – It is not the kit you use that matters, it is what you point the kit at!
On review of this image I have decided that I need to remove the recess to the right hand side – it annoys me and distracts.
I will post this tomorrow – let me know if you prefer this enhancement to this image. It might just be me……
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Saturday 27th August 2016
No work needed to this image. This is the picture of a private library at a stunning country residence in Dorset. One of my best pieces of work as an interior photographer.
Yes - a private library. Incredible. And fantastic architecture.
This is one of my favourite shoots ever, and why I enjoy what I do so much.
This image was in my previous 2014 photograph portfolio, and stayed in for my March 2016 BIPP Portfolio Review, and is still in. I like things that I have edited to the point where there is nothing I can do other than things for the sake of it. And I don't edit for the sake of it. As much as I enjoy creating the best image I can the processing is just a necessary step on the way. If an image doesn't need any work then great - but that has not happened yet.
This image was taken on my Canon 5D with Canon 17-40mm lens. The exposure was 1/100th second at F8, using an ISO of 640.
I had to use such an ISO as I couldn't get this shot with my tripod as there want enough room. The only thing would have helped with this would have been the Canon 11-24mm lens. I have written about this dilemma before.
I often find myself squeezing into corners to to get the view of the place I want.
Due to the unusual shape of this extension to the house, it made getting the framing and composition right a challenge. A challenge I greatly enjoyed I have to say.
So I as forced to take this image handheld, which I always try to avoid. I prefer shooting interior photography work on a tripod, as it forces to to get the best composition I can. I also try to get verticals and horzontals correct in camera, saving me a job later.
A nice and easy inclusion in my portfolio, which is coming together nicely. Don't tell anyone but I am also working on a duplicate black and white portfolio!!
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Friday 25th August 2016
A new addition to my portfolio is this picture of the interior of Southampton University's Guildhall Square building. Part of the building was refurbished for the University, and I photographed the completed works for the architect.
The first thing I did to the client edit image was to crop in tighter.
Next I dodged the back of the worktop removing the shadow.
Then I painted clarity onto the worktop to bring out the texture.
I boosted the sharpening from 70 to 93.
To give the image more impact I boosted the blues using the target Adjustment Tool in the HSL/Colour/ B&W panel. I the reduced the luminance of the blue, which was too much so I backed off a little on the saturation boost.
Next I added a graduated filter to the bottom, and lightened the stools, and boosted the saturation to give the stools a bit of life. A bit of clarity gave the colour in the stools a bit of a boost too.
Last thing in Lightroom was a vignette at -21 and that was that. Apart from the image looked a bit dark, so I boosted the exposure by ½ a stop. Having brightened the image, the buildings in the background looked too bright so I burned them to darken them slightly.
Then over to Photoshop for a bit of cleaning using the clone stamp, healing tool and content aware fill.
This is how I approach cleaning my images in Photoshop.
- Press Ctrl 1 – this zooms you into 100%.
- Press home – this takes me to the top left corner of the magnified image.
- Then view by view I remove anything that needs removing. Once done I press page down and it takes me to the next bit. It doesn't work as slick as Lightroom but it works for me.
So another image in my portfolio. And one that was not in there before.
Footnote - Keyboard shortcuts in Photoshop are well worth learning.
This image was taken on my Canon 6D with Canon 17-40mm lens. The exposure was 1/320th of a second at F11, using an ISO of 100. The image was captured on a tripod.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Thursday 25th August 2016
Today's portfolio shot is an unusual interior photography shot taken in Cognac, France.
You are not meant to take photos in the cellars at some Cognac Houses. But on a tour I saw this view and had to ask. And the nice gentleman said one shot would be fine. Just one. I had lagged back in the group on the tour, carrying my camera around but being frustrated at the thought of not getting any pictures of this fascinating place.
I was glad I asked though. The security man must have taken the view that me taking one image would be ok – no-one else would know as they were all way in front of me so there wasn’t going to be a barrage of photos being taken.
As I said a fascinating scene. Unusual and a nice complimentary image to the picture of wine barrels in Bordeaux.
A tricky capture this one. Taken on my Canon 6D using an ISO of 25600. The lens was the Canon 8-15mm zoom lens. Incredible!
I remember when 1600 was considered so high you had to be careful (ISO25,600 is in effect four fold increase from ISO 1600).
At such a high ISO with such a low aperture I could comfortably handhold the shot using a shutter speed of 1/60th second at F4. I only had one lens with me on the tour, quite cunningly my Canon 8-15mm lens, set at the 15mm end of things.
Tricky processing this too.
The image submitted for my portfolio has had a little bit more work. It is interesting that my portfolio images all appear to be getting similar additional treatment, which now I think about it is giving some clues about the way forward.
Basically most of my portfolio images have received the following kinds of processing
- Highlights emphasised
- Shadows emphasised
- In effect the dynamic range within images has been expanded.
- Image brightness – more/ less as required.
- Cleaning up of annoyances, distractions
For this image I did the following additional work.
Dodged the face of the front barrels and the two bright lines under the lights to brighten them.
Painted some noise reduction bottom right. Finally added a further vignette with a strength of -19.
This was a single had held image in virtual darkness. Focus is sharp, and yes there is some noise but nothing that detracts from the photo.
And a welcome inclusion in my photography portfolio.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
24th August 2016
Another commercial architectural photography image that is in the set of contenders for my portfolio.
Interior photography I particularly enjoy.
Not sure why – I think it is the challenge of accurately recording internal spaces which are often more challenging than external images.
This picture is taken at a new private housing development in Southampton, Hampshire. I photographed the interior and exterior for the company acting as the Employers Agent on this project.
This picture of the kitchen supplied and fitted by Lanzet was taken immediately after completion of the internal works to this particular room. Outside it was still a building site with lots going on but this was a lovely, brand new internal space.
I like the sharpness of this image, which is a strong feature of the solid, polished worktops under the down lighters.
This is another interior photography shot where the lighting was mixed – a combination of daylight from the window on the right hand side and two different light fittings, one on the ceiling, in addition to the down lighters fitted to the underneath of the kitchen wall units.
LED lighting is these days more consistent so achieving a correct white balance is becoming easier these days which is good.
This is a three shot HDR image, and I have merged the two stop over and two stop underexposed images.
The image above is the portfolio image, to which I have carried out the following additional editing in Lightroom and Photoshop.
- I brightened the overall image, then boosted the vibrancy, I added a very minor vignette,
- Next I painted clairity onto the work tops before moving into Photoshop to do some tidying and cleaning. I removed the air input in the ceiling, and basically cleaned the work tops and floor of dust marks!
Yes you can clean things quite literally in Photoshop. I used my three favourite tools, content aware fill, clone stamp and spot healing brush.
- Then I saved the image back into Lightroom, added it to the edited portfolio collection set and that is that. Oh yes sorry I gave it a 5 start rating (which helps me identify it later as being that actual image).
Then of course I produced a black and white version which I will post another time.
Rick McEvoy Photography Blog
Sunday 21st August 2016