Topaz Labs has released a brand new plugin, the Topaz Clarity. It was meant to help photographers create compelling and powerful images by intelligently enhancing contrast and clarity with no visible artifact or halos.
Here are some of the unique features introduced in Topaz Clarity:
Selective Contrast Control – a cutting edge process of selecting specific contrast variations in your original image, allowing you to quickly target and then increase or decrease the contrast and clarity in that specific variation.
Breakthrough Halo-free Algorithm – boost contrast and clarity without emphasizing transitions between light and dark areas, eliminating the common problems of halos, noise and artifacts.
Advance Hue/Saturation/Luminance Technology – using IntelliColor technology, you can easily enhance your image with the HSL filter, getting stronger, yet more natural HSL adjustments.
Re-Imagined Masking Workflow – the masking module, now attached to each adjustment tab contains a comprehensive set of tools including an edge-aware brush, gradient mask, smart feather tool, color aware tool, and more.
User Interface Design – cleaner, more modern and efficient interface to improve usability, workflow and overall aesthetics.
You can purchase the Topaz Clarity at a special reduced price of $29.99 through May 31st with promo code:claritynew by clicking here.After the introductory price expires, it will retail for $49.99, so grab your copy now.
I received a pre-released version of the software, which allowed me to play with it a little. Although, I have only used the included presets, I am amazed at how easy it is to use. I think I am already in love, and I can easily see myself using this plugin a lot. Check out the sample photo I edited using the Sunset III preset. Click on the images for a better view.
Tulip bed original
Tulip Bed: Lightroom / PSE with Topaz Clarity Plugin
I thought I’d do something different today. I figured I would start documenting my post processing workflow and share them here. I am hoping someone reading my blog would find it helpful.
I found a photo of a pink rose that I took a while back. I wanted to covert the image into black and white, and I wanted it to have that soft look, which I think is appropriate for this subject.
Since I shoot in RAW, I “developed” the file in Lightroom 4. I fixed the white balance and adjusted the exposure. I wanted to overexpose it a little to achieve the look that I want. I then exported it over to Photoshop Elements to continue with the editing. The plan was to use Topaz BW Effects to convert the image. Here is my Photoshop workflow:
Duplicate background layer
Cleared some of the stray water drops using Spot Healing Tool in Photoshop
Flattened the layers
Duplicated the background layer again and renamed it Topaz BW
Launched Topaz BW Effects from the Filter tab in Photoshop Elements
In the Topaz BW Effects plugin, I chose Milk Memories from the Opalotype Collection
Played around with the strength of the effect until I am satisfied with the outcome
Back to Photoshop Elements, I created a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer, pushed the Saturation slider all the way to the left to remove the remaining hint of color
I flattened the layers, then created Hue/Saturation adjustment layer to adjust the lightness to +14 (I needed to adjust the lightness because I wanted to lighten the background more)
Finally, on the Hue/Saturation layer mask, I brushed over the flower to bring back the details on the petals.
Et voila! The final image is now a soft black and white.
Autumn Veil | ISO – 100 | 60 mm | 1/350 sec @ f/5.6 | Edited with Topaz Lens Effects (Click on the image for a better view)
Pardon me for posting another Autumn landscape, but I was going through some photos that I took last Fall and I realized there are a few that had some potential. This is a shot of Village Tremblant, which was taken as I was standing at the Summit.
You must know that the fog on this image was added during post, since my purchase of the Topaz Bundle some time ago, I haven’t had the chance to play with Topaz Lens Effects and I thought this was a good candidate. I knew I wanted to add “veil” to the landscape, so, after the adjustments on Lightroom 4, I fired up Topaz Lens Effects in Photoshop and added the “Fog” effects” to the water and a little bit to the ground.
This was the original image after Lightroom 4. As you can see, the landscape was pretty clear with no fog in sight. I do like the original, but I’m sure a little creativity never hurts anyone.
Welcome to 2013 everyone! I hope that you all had a blast during your New Year’s Eve celebration. Mine was an awfully quiet one, totally not how I envisioned it. If you must know, I rang in the New Year with a nasty flu. But no worries, big party or not, I intend to make 2013 my best year yet.
Since I have not gone out to shoot because of the flu, I don’t have any new photos to share, so these were taken some time ago, but recently edited using Topaz Simplify.
Bridge | ISO – 200 | 32 mm | 1/125 sec @ f/11 | Topaz Simplify
Maple Painting | ISO – 100 | 80 mm | 1/180 sec @ f/5.6 | Topaz Simplify