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Archive 2013 · Before and After -- 10 different shots
  
 
friscoron
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Before and After -- 10 different shots



There are some shots here to salvage some badly exposed shots, and then there are some creative edits where I actually did exactly what I wanted to do in the shot for this specific edit, and other shots where I just needed to think outside the box. I'll try to explain my thoughts and post-processing on each of these shots. Some of the processing is just plain my style.

1. I wanted to start with this one because I need to send a huge thanks to FMer davenfl for taking the time to show me how this shot would work with some creative editing. I was pretty excited about this shot when it happened, it was the last shot of the night for an e-session and I had a couple trees with Christmas lighting behind the couple, so I thought it would work out well. Histograms are tough to go by with these shots since so much of the image is black. It looked good on the camera, as they often do, but when I pulled it into LR, I wasn't happy. I almost gave up on this shot until davenfl played around with it and opened my eyes to the possibilities. Most of the work is in LR4 -- exp +.45, - highlights, + shadows and blacks, clarity +43, vibrance and saturation up, then just noise reduction luminance of +52. Cloning of the lights in PS, crop to remove ppl from right. This is really lit by one speedlight about 8 feet behind the couple. 1/60, ISO 3200, f/3.5. D4 and my 85 f/1.4G.
Before





After






2.
This is a shot where I knew I wanted to finish in high key b&w, so I made sure I was exposing for the whites. Naturally, you want to expose for the whites when shooting a bride in a wedding dress, but I was particularly attentive knowing I was going to edit in high key. Shot outdoors in the shade of the house. D4 and 70-200. 1/500, ISO 250, f/3.2, as I wanted a shallow DOF.






3.
Rookie mistake. I had a little time with the B&G and their party at the golf course where they had their reception. It was late afternoon, gray boring sky. I obviously had other places where I could put the crowd, not here where that log stump is... but that's what I did. Rookie mistake. I asked the B&G to do a dip and kiss while the party (cliche alert!) oohed and ahhhed, and when they did, the groom stuck his arm out like you see here. As soon as I saw that, I thought it'd be a fun shot to have the groomsmen trying to pull him away, and the bridesmaids trying to hold onto her. The bridesmaids were a bit lame, and I realized I really wanted to focus on the groomsmen's faces, so I cropped in tight and ended up loving the shot. Not a lot of special processing, just showing how a crop can sometimes make all the difference. D4, 70-200. 1/400, ISO 160, f/5.6.
BEFORE





AFTER






4.
Another mistake, this time with the exposure. It was dusk on a cold December day, and I had just shot them in the opposite direction with better light on them. I saw the Christmas lights on these trees in the background, and thought this would be cool. He suddenly picked her up and I just loved how this looked! Until I saw it in Lightroom, anyway. Then I thought... man, I've always wanted to turn one of my images into an illustration, so I just went crazy on it. The blacks in their face is intentional as part of the illustration effect. D4 and 70-200 and SB 910. 1/100, ISO 3200, f/2.8.
BEFORE





AFTER






5.
My kiddies in my backyard. I wanted to get some of that golden sunlight to backlight my kids, pick up a little flare, and then I hit them with some light from my Einstein and a 64" PLM. Turned out a little darker than I wanted, but managed to get it to pop with some post-processing. This is now a 24x36-inch canvas print in our living room, I just love my kids' expressions here, so them. D4 and my 85. 1/200, ISO 400, f/5.6.






6.
This was a backyard wedding and as crazy as this sounds, this was my one shot at getting a really nice shot of the bride on her way to the aisle. You can see the top of the tent above her, and some gardening crap to each side of the stairs. As soon as she tilted her head like that, I thought we had a chance of getting a really nice shot. I think it's pretty funny how well it turned out, compared to the original. I added an iris blur in PS to give it a dreamy effect. Lots of cloning. D4 and 24-70. 1/160, ISO 320 and f/3.2.






7.
Okay, yeah, this is one of my favorite shots. I do it every time. This was shot indoors using window light. I had originally edited this for b&w, then realized later it needed to be in color but more high key and radiant. When I was done, I was pretty happy. I added some blur, esp on her hair to her right (our left), so the focus would be on her face/eyelashes. D4 and 24-70. 1/100, ISO 2000, f/2.8.






8.
This band was getting ready to go to SXSW and then go on tour, and needed some publicity shots. They wanted me to shoot a rehearsal down in a basement that was... challenging. I had just bought this Doug Gordon Torchlight and decided to use it to look like a light on stage. I then took the colors and made it all a vibrant blue, and I was pretty happy how this ended up. This is just an example how changing the color can impact the shot. D4 and 85. 1/100, ISO 2500, and f/1.4.
BEFORE





AFTER






9.
One of these two is a tight end in a professional football league. This was the last shot of a fun family session, and I just wanted something with the two of them. It's December, so gotta get those lights in the background. I showed this only because of the glow/iris blur effect I added to this, just something I sometimes do to give it a more ethereal quality. Plus, I like to show off that I got to shoot a pro football player. (But I've got nothing compared to who Lisa shot twice last year!) D4 and 70-200. 1/400, ISO 640, f/3.5.
BEFORE





AFTER






10.
I'd been wanting to shoot a backlit umbrella shot in the rain of a bride and groom all year. I was 2nd shooting for a really good photographer here in Chicago, my second time shooting with him, and I convinced him to let me do this shot. He was inside getting some shots and she was getting her dress worked on. I got the video guy to model for me, and I loved how everything looked, except that white half-wall to the right. So I moved the lights over to get me away from the wall, and had no idea I changed the angle of the lights so they were now lighting the tree behind where the couple would be. I waited and waited for the B&G to come out and when they did, the rain -- which had been coming down pretty much all day, practically came to a stop. It was like everything just came apart, as I could see what was happening with the lighting. Four shots, and I was done. So I decided to pull the rain from the shot with the video guy and bring it all together. Nobody really remembered that it stopped raining during this shot. I'm including all the setup shot, the actual shot, and the finished piece so you can see how it all came together. When I backlight rain or snow, I used two speedlights about a foot up, pointed 45 degrees up and 45 degrees away from the couple in opposite directions to capture as much rain (or snow) as possible. D4 and 70-200. 1/160, ISO 250, and f/6.3.
SET-UP SHOT





ACTUAL SHOT WITH B&G





FINAL IMAGE







Feb 08, 2013 at 06:56 AM
basehorhonda
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Great write up and thanks for showing us your before and afters. I like them all with the exception to #9. Whatever you did really made their faces look a lot bigger/fatter. Plus the color seems better to me in the before.

Thanks again.



Feb 08, 2013 at 07:11 AM
gregSC
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


thanks for sharing your thoughts and pictures

Greg



Feb 08, 2013 at 08:31 AM
Mike1.6
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Thanks for letting us into your creative process Ron. Very interesting approaches to some of those problems. I particularly appreciated your solution for the bride and the doorway. When I looked at the before shot I didn't see how you would be able to turn it into a good shot.


Feb 08, 2013 at 01:03 PM
Steady Hand
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Howdy Ron,

When I started to view this topic I had an immediate thought:

"Now THAT is what I am talking about!"

By that I mean your post is the kind of post I think makes this forum more useful than simply a pretty picture viewing site, and what I was writing about in those earlier topics about why this forum seems slow and what I think would help it.

Adding the text content (your write up on challenges of the photo and how you overcame them or made the "after" shot look so good) is what I think will keep people coming to this forum, rather than just viewing photos.

So, GOOD JOB on this post!

And, I was impressed by how you salvaged several shots too! Good job on those too! In a few cases, I thought the initial shot was "beyond saving" but you pulled it out and made it appealing. Well done on that!




Feb 08, 2013 at 02:31 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


basehorhonda wrote:
Great write up and thanks for showing us your before and afters. I like them all with the exception to #9. Whatever you did really made their faces look a lot bigger/fatter. Plus the color seems better to me in the before.
Thanks again.


Thanks! I appreciate your feedback. I did crop that shot (9) so their faces as a whole is bigger than the original. It could be that the lighting gives that effect that you're seeing. As for the color, we all go our different ways with that, and we should as part of our unique styles. It's all subjective, but I still want to hear from others who see it differently than I do.



Feb 08, 2013 at 03:19 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


gregSC wrote:
thanks for sharing your thoughts and pictures

Greg


Glad to do it,Greg. And I'm really glad it's appreciated.



Feb 08, 2013 at 03:21 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Mike1.6 wrote:
Thanks for letting us into your creative process Ron. Very interesting approaches to some of those problems. I particularly appreciated your solution for the bride and the doorway. When I looked at the before shot I didn't see how you would be able to turn it into a good shot.


Thanks, Mike. It looks like I shot this pretty wide, but I remember wanting to get those side windows in the shot and then I knew I'd crop the rest out of it. I don't think I even realized the shovel was there. Once I cloned everything out, it still really didn't look great to me, and that's when I decided to add the iris blur. That's when I thought the image finally pulled together. I displayed this pic at 16x20 for a bridal show this past weekend and a number of prospective brides said it looked magazine quality -- which I mention only because it's funny considering how it started as an original pic.



Feb 08, 2013 at 03:26 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Steady Hand wrote:
Howdy Ron,
When I started to view this topic I had an immediate thought:
"Now THAT is what I am talking about!"
Adding the text content (your write up on challenges of the photo and how you overcame them or made the "after" shot look so good) is what I think will keep people coming to this forum, rather than just viewing photos.
So, GOOD JOB on this post!
And, I was impressed by how you salvaged several shots too! Good job on those too! In a few cases, I thought the initial shot was "beyond saving" but you
...Show more

Thanks, Steady! I really appreciate it!



Feb 08, 2013 at 03:28 PM
fgransee
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


I like the idea ... actually there should be a "LR Before & After"Category. That would be very interesting.

I am not fond of all the pp on these images but some are great from my point of view - for example #3 and #10. The image #3 should rather be a long "panorama" format to show the whole gang but the pp really makes the group look excellent. #10 is really cool - the video guy and the final image ! You placed the flash behind the subjects and point it into the umbrella (?) For the final image - did you remove the tree in pp or was it just blacked out but changing the direction of the light?

A few thoughts about some other shots ... #2 looks "ghostly" in my opinion. #4 If you would not have said that you were going for an "illustration" effect, this would not have been obvious to me. The faces just look rubber-like, not very flattering. The background is really nice that way though.
#9 I might have rotated ccw by just a few degrees, raised the black level and clarity on his coat only and try a transitional blur on the evergreen on the right (plus darken the green ... or check how the photo would look with the evergreen cropped out).

A great example for plain saving a shot is #5! In terms of arrangement it might look also good if the boy would have been on the chair and his older sisters on the sides - since he is the shortest (for now) and the sisters are his "guardians".

Again - nice idea !



Feb 08, 2013 at 03:30 PM
 



OneLightStand
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


+1 on the kudo's for the post & samples.

It's nice to see how others overcome issues by using post-processing...it makes me want to re-visit a few of my past throw-away shots...



Feb 08, 2013 at 05:12 PM
LMMphoto
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Thanks for posting this, it's great to get a rundown of the creative process!


Feb 08, 2013 at 05:20 PM
boxman
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Since I am just learning LR4, these are great examples of what can be accomplished by someone that knows what they are doing, thanks!


Feb 08, 2013 at 06:05 PM
Lisa_Holloway
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


These are AMAZING, Ron! Seriously love them all, that is some great editing. I LOVE the creative crop in #3...makes it a whole different picture. You have a wonderful eye!!


Feb 08, 2013 at 07:52 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


fgransee wrote:
I am not fond of all the pp on these images but some are great from my point of view - for example #3 and #10. The image #3 should rather be a long "panorama" format to show the whole gang but the pp really makes the group look excellent. #10 is really cool - the video guy and the final image ! You placed the flash behind the subjects and point it into the umbrella (?) For the final image - did you remove the tree in pp or was it just blacked out but changing the direction of
...Show more

Thanks, Frank. I thought we would lose some of the energy of the shot by including the other girls, so I like the crop I went with on 3. As for 10, the flash is as much to get light into the umbrella and back down onto the subjects as it is to light the rain -- so the lights are pointed 45 degrees up, and 45 degrees away from the subjects with a wide zoom setting on the lights. For that final image, I used much of the rain and background from the shot with the video guy, so the trees were no longer in the picture.

As for No. 5, I don't really want the symmetry of having all three kids around the same height, so that's why I arranged them the way I did. Others might like the symmetry, just not me. Thanks for your comments!



Feb 08, 2013 at 08:52 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


OneLightStand wrote:
+1 on the kudo's for the post & samples.

It's nice to see how others overcome issues by using post-processing...it makes me want to re-visit a few of my past throw-away shots...


Thanks! I was reading a thread in the Wedding forum sometime this week and someone mentioned that their editing style hadn't changed in the last few years, and that pretty much amazed me. I'm learning new stuff every week -- some becomes part of my style, others not. But my style is constantly evolving, and I hope it always does!

So do go back and take a look. And experiment. Be bold!



Feb 08, 2013 at 08:56 PM
Eyeball
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Great examples and explanations, Ron, and some great final results.




Feb 08, 2013 at 10:01 PM
ozpall
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Great job, the rain shot turned out awesome.


Feb 09, 2013 at 12:08 AM
northern nurse
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


What a fun post! I love to see before and after especially when you are saving a shot, so creative and inspiring. Thanks for sharing and your creative pp.



Feb 09, 2013 at 01:54 AM
davenfl
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Before and After -- 10 different shots


Great stuff Ron and glad to help you out anytime my friend.

Dave



Feb 09, 2013 at 02:01 AM
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