Day 25 Assignment – Add Contrast

For this assignment we were to add texture and punch to one of our pictures by adding contrast.

I wasn’t happy with my first attempt where I started in Photoshop then made adjustments in Lightroom, so I started again from scratch using Lightroom first then only used Photoshop to clean up the jetty and remove the lamp posts.

Nightcliff Jetty – Original 1/1000 f3.5 ISO 80 24mm

First attempt – lamp posts left in

I didn’t like the white patch in the sky when I removed the lamp posts, but I didn’t like the result when I tried to fix it either so I started again:

End results with and without lamp posts.

Day 24 Assignment – Use the Power of Local Adjustment

For this assignment we were to make changes to discrete portions of a photo using tools in Lightroom and Photoshop.

I spent a lot of time trying to change the colour of the sky but was unhappy with the results and ended up cropping out most of the sky and using the clone stamp tool to extend the tree line instead.
I removed a lamp post, a few magpie geese in the background and leaf litter in the grass and on the dirt using the healing brush. I played around with the contrast, saturation, highlights sharpness and whites and lightened the horse’s tail to match the mane and make it look cleaner.
My undo/redo functions got a good workout with this. Whenever I looked at the finished product I found something else I wanted to change!

This is the original f3.5 1/2000 410 mm ISO 1600

Befor crop

End result

Re-posting after Jim suggested applying a light vignette instead of cropping.

Re-posting with vignette feathered out so it’s barely noticeable.

Day 23 Assignment – Enhance Tones

For this assignment we were to find one of our photos where the lighting or exposure was off and fix it using the tools in Lightroom and Photoshop we’d learnt about in Day 23: Control the Light.

I selected this photo from Day 6 Assignment – Stop the Action because Jim Hamel liked it but said it needed brightening in post processing.

This first photo is the original.

The second photo shows the results of my first attempt at brightening using the basic sliders in Lightroom and slight cropping on the left side to remove a partial palm frond.
I hadn’t made notes of the adjustments I’d made so I went back and the third photo shows the results after I
increased the contrast and highlights
brought down the shadows
increased the whites
brought down the blacks
and I removed the log fence in Photoshop.
Then in photo 4, I went a bit further and 
increased the temperature, tint and vibrance 
lowered the saturation  
increased the clarity 
lowered the dehaze.

Day 22 Assignment – Capture the Decisive Moment

This assignment is a continuation of Day 21 Work the Scene, but as I am unable to complete that at the moment, I am submitting some photos I took of a martial arts demonstration by the Darwin Chung Wah Society for Chinese New Year last month.

I think they meet the anticipation requirement of the assignment.
Please bear in mind this was my first time using manual mode in an indoor stadium setting, just the second week of the course. The photos are unedited except for a bit of cropping.

1/400 f5.6 ISO 3200

1/400 f5.6 ISO 3200

1/400 f5.0 ISO 3200

Day 19 Assignment – Leading Lines

Create a photograph with leading lines that guide the viewer’s eye.
The lines can either lead the viewer into the subject of the picture or across the picture to the subject.
Decide whether you want the subject of the picture to be the lines themselves or something else.
I tried to find leading lines in a variety of natural and constructed situations.
I experimented with Lightroom and Photoshop to enhance my photos by using the exposure, whiteness, contrast and highlights controls; I used a vignette for the first time and I removed a person’s head. I tried out the luminance bar/arch but I wasn’t confident and need a lot more practice as I pulled it into some unexpected shapes with undesirable results.
The originals follow the enhanced photos below.
Elizabeth River Bridge from the jetty
Elizabeth River Jetty with the bridge in the background

Train tracks converging with the road approaching the bridge

Finn Road in the rural area before the bridge – accidentally replaced the original

Rapid Creek
Footbridge over Rapid Creek – two views
A grove of gumtrees before the footbridge
Cloud over Nightcliff boat ramp breakwater and Sunset Park
Golden path to the sun Nightcliff

Day 18 Assignment – Clouds

For this assignment we were to create one compelling photo of clouds.
Set the horizon on the bottom third line so that at least two thirds of the frame is sky.
Foreground is important so chose your location carefully.
Make sure the picture balances – use formal or informal balance – symmetrical or asymmetrical.
Spend time getting it just right by cropping.

This is almost identical to the original which I seem to have deleted.

Cropped and removed blemishes in Photoshop.

I love the balance of the little fishing boat on one side against the dark menacing storm cloud on the other.

This cloud balanced itself but I took a few other shots to include some foreground.

It was hard to find an example of formal symmetrical balance. I used the jetty lightposts.

Day 17 Assignment – Invite the Viewer In – Back to Front Composition

For this assignment we were to 
shoot a landscape scene arranging the shots using ‘back to front’ composition.
Concentrate  on the foreground.
Create a sense that the viewer can walk into the picture.
Try getting low, getting behind something. 
Look for patterns on the ground.

Day 16 Assignment – Landscape – Rule of Thirds

For this assignment we were to

shoot a landscape scene and arrange the shots using the Rule of Thirds.

To accentuate the sky put the horizon on the lower third line.

To accentuate the ground put the horizon on the top third line.

If there’s a subject or centre of interest, place it on the left or right line, don’t centre it.

Use the crop tool to refine the composition later.

Darwin City from Charles Darwin National Park

All 1/200 f8.0 ISO 80 4.10 – 42 mm

 

 

 

Darwin City from Larrakeyah

First three shots 1/1000 f5.6 to f8.0 ISO 200 to 400

1/500 f8 ISO 100

Day 15 Assignment – A Walk in the Park

For this assignment  we were to go to a local park and

  • identify subjects to photograph – Ask ‘What is this a picture of?’
  • decide on the context it goes in by asking ‘Does this support the subject?’.  If it does it’s in; if it doesn’t it’s out.

  • I found this assignment anything but a ‘walk in the park’. For a start it was difficult to decide on a subject. The choices were: children’s play equipment; a lot of greenery; and water features.
    Then, although I had spent most of the day revising what we had covered until now, I froze and felt almost as hopeless as I was on the first night shooting the sunset.
    I stuck at it however, and came up with these offerings.

    1/50 f4.5 ISO 80 Lens 80 mm

    Identify the Subject – I had noticed the fountain in the distance as we entered the park and climbed to the top of a hill to get an overall view.

    Decide on the context it goes in – I asked whether the surrounding park supported the fountain.

    I zoomed in to reduce the amount of park around the subject.

    1/20 f4.5 ISO 80 Lens 80 mm

    I narrowed it further by shooting a portrait view.

    1/20 f8.0 ISO 80 Lens 85 mm

    I also tried shooting the fountain off centre.

    1/20 f6.3 ISO 80 Lens 85 mm

    In the end I choose the third photo as it highlights the fountain and has the least amount of distraction.

    Other subjects included a bird on a nest metal art installation:

    Both 1/6 f8 ISO 80 Lens 100 mm and 143 mm

    I prefer the second shot as I think the pond detracts from the picture.

    Corkscrew Palms

    Both 1/6 f5.6 ISO 200 Lens 31 mm

    It was the pattern of the trunks that attracted my attention, therefore I prefer the idea of the second photo, though because it’s a bit blurry, I would have to return and step back a little to re-take the shot.

    I also took the opportunity to practise photographing flowing water while I was there. Again, the images appear darker here than on my camera’s display but I hope to be able to lighten them in post processing.

    1/30 f8.0 ISO 100 Lens 85 mm

    1/30 f8.0 ISO 100 Lens 24 mm

    1/30 f8.0 ISO 100 Lens 112 mm

    1/40 f8.0 ISO 200 Lens 80 mm

    1/40 f8.0 ISO 200 Lens 64 mm

    Day 14 Assignment: The Twilight Shot

    For this assignment we were required to take photos in one location from sunset to full darkness so that we could experience the changing light and the adjustments we needed to make to our settings.

    I found this chart when I was checking the time of sunset on the day. It shows the times of Civil, Nautical and Astro Twilight.


    I started shooting at 7.12 pm and took about 35 photos until 7.47 pm when it became impossible for my camera to capture any image, regardless of what settings I chose.

    7.12 pm 1/160 f6.4 ISO 400

    Within five minutes I had to widen the aperture and Increase the ISO:

    7.17 pm 1/130 f6.3 ISO 800

    From 7.18 pm I had to use the widest aperture on my camera f5.6

    7.18 pm 1/320 f5.6 ISO 800

    At 7.19 pm I increased the ISO to 1600 but that made the image too bright and washed out the colours.

    7.19 pm 1/320 f5.6 ISO 1600

    I tried including some foreground after that and adjusted the shutter speed and ISO settings to try to get a true representation of the colours – f5.6 aperture being the widest on my camera used for all.

    7.27 pm 1/100 f5.6 ISO 1600

    From then until the end of Civil Twilight at 7.34 pm I turned the ISO up to 800 and adjusted the shutter speed to between 1/30 and 1/100.

    7.34 pm 1/30 f5.6 ISO 800

    After that, while I was shooting in Nautical Twilight, I increased the ISO to 3200 and adjusted the shutter speed to between 1/25 and 1/160

    7.47 pm 1/25 f5.6 ISO 3200

    My camera didn’t make it to the end of Nautical Twilight, which is probably just as well as it was past dinner time and we were hungry!