Practice makes perfect they say, so every down time that I have is a chance to practice photoshop. I still have a long way to go, but this business of getting better at skin retouching is something that I want drilled in my subconscious. Portraiture is the genre that I plan on focusing on and I realize that not only do I need to be great behind the lens, but I also need to be much better behind the computer.
I have been working hard on mastering the frequency separation technique to retouch skin blemishes. I want this to become second nature that I can do it with my eyes closed (ok, not really, but you get the point ;P)
For those of you who are curious, the image below is what I started with. It was a little bit underexposed so that was fixed using curves in photoshop as well.
Looks like mother nature is giving us a little bit of a break from the torture of good ol’ winter. Temperatures have been hovering between minus 3 to plus 5 (Celsius) these past couple of days. After being in a deep freeze for almost a week straight, this kind of break is definitely welcomed by everyone.
I have almost forgotten about this little jewel of a place. I was coming back from my shoot one Saturday and decided to take the long way instead of the usual highway 15. I got to the spot just in time for the most amazing sunset I’ve seen all winter. The sky was brightly lit with red and orange hues that it almost looks like somebody set it on fire. It was cold, and I wasn’t dressed properly for the occasion so I only managed to grab a couple of shots. It was a perfect ending to one perfect day.
Building from the previous black and white collection, here’s another one that was shot in SoCal. It seems that I cannot get enough of black and whites these days so I have been processing photos this way. I hope you don’t mind. This image was taken at the Manhattan beach pier, a photo which I have imagined for so long, one that I knew I needed to create when I visited the place. I was going to leave the color on this photograph, but it was distracting, and taking away from the main focus of the image: the texture and the lines.
I am starting something new this year. 2014 will be different. When I started with photography, I dove in head first, learning as much as I can as I go along. It wasn’t such a bad thing, I learned a lot. But I have so much more to learn. So, this year, I will be focusing more on learning, and honing whatever skill I have picked up all those years. I will become a student again :), if all goes well, I should be starting school in two weeks. I am taking a two-year, intensive Commercial Photography program at Dawson College. I suspect that my blog will also go through some changes. I will be using my blog to document my progress, and hopefully use it to share whatever I learn in school. At least that is the plan. I am hoping that you’ll stick around as I go through this exciting journey.
Possibly the best part of my trip to the West Coast last month was the chance to be at the beach without worrying that I might give myself a frost bite while I walk barefoot along the shore. It was nice to just be able to sink my toes in the sand, something I definitely won’t dare to do here at this time of year.
I haven’t had a chance to do any shooting since I came back, and since I am sorta missing the lovely weather of SoCal, I thought I’d show you a beach photo which I took with my Fujifilm X20. For those of you who own any of the Fujifilm X series, you probably already know how awesome these cameras are. I have to admit, I wasn’t sure I was going to love mine when I first got it but the image quality that this little thing produces blew me away.
The above photo was shot in RAW and processed in Lightroom 5. The out of camera image was already brilliant, so I really barely did anything in post. The colors were rich and not overly saturated, so I didn’t touch those. The contrast was bumped up a tiny bit, but that’s about it. I originally intended to trim the bottom of the image to achieve the rule of thirds, but in the end decided against it. The reflection of the blue sky on the receding tide was beautiful and I thought it would be a shame not to show it.