On Tuesday Michael Curtis made a return visit to Warminster to follow up on Competition No. 2 he’d judged for us in December. The objective was to implement the changes he’d suggested on a selection of images to see if the “after” image was indeed better than the “before”. I suspect quite often we don’t go through this exercise for ourselves and it was quite an eye opener for more than one of the audience on Tuesday. Michael had put a lot of preparation into what he was showing us but didn’t only show us the before and after images, but took us through exactly how to get there. Michael used Photoshop CC but said he used only those tools that we could also find in Photoshop Elements and other branded editing software. This was so helpful as it left us believing we could achieve the same sort of results and was very encouraging. Michael had picked out s selection of images to demonstrate different techniques but “how to properly replace a sky” was probably the most popular. However, there was no doubt that all the “after” images Michael had prepared were significantly better than the “before”. Finally Michael had put together a short PowerPoint presentation of some of the key considerations of exposure and how we should be using the histogram to help us make sure that the data was there if we needed to pull detail out of shadow areas. Key to this is remembering there is no way of rescuing blown out highlights so if the dynamic range of you camera can’t cope with the extremes of light and dark in a picture at the very least you should expose so not to blow out the highlight areas, although bracketed exposure and HDR will also help. Michael is a fairly frequent visitor to Warminster as a judge or presenter and his light-hearted manner and sense of fun made the evening fun as well as being educational, so thanks Michael and hope we see you back next season.
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Images: Geoff Sims
Report: Mil Chimley LRPS