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fisherchick

Need Help With Editing/Camera Setting...

11 posts in this topic

Hey, all! I am, and always have had, a hard time with landscape pictures. For example, to the naked eye this:

IMG_1304.jpg

IMG_1303.jpg

looked really cool, but as you can see (and I am sure you all know what the problem is..) it looks dark and grey! So, I tried to edit the first one:

River.jpg

and I think it looks worse! I think the edited one has too much red, or something. Plus, my frustrations got in the way and I wasn't taking my time anymore, so I stopped...

What can I do to capture the picture with the right apeture/shutter setting? It looks good on the digi "screen" but when viewed via computer I think they look dark. My focus was the frost contrasted with the open water...

My computer is a Dell Vostro 1700, so it should be a pretty good one??!! Right??

Thanks again for any help and for making me a better photographer with all of your advice!!

fisherchick

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There will be some good responses to this, but to start, what editing program do you use?

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It looks to me like all you need to do is lighten the shadows.

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Can I ask you a few questions? First off I see you used Landscape mode. What you have to remember is the camera will try and do its best to do what you asked it to do.

Landscape mode if I recall will try and boost contrast and colors and set an aperture and shutter speed to capture a larger depth of field.

The camera is only so smart, it sees everything as 18% grey, so when photographing snow it takes the white and wants to expose it as a neutral 18% grey. In this case it and as is the usual case with snow, underexposes to make it grey.

You need to be a bit smarter than the camera and override some of the settings to get your photo correctly exposed. You have a number of choices, let me mention just two;

1. Use Exposure Compensation (EC) to add some exposure to the shot. In this case you would want +EC to counteract the fact that the camera is underexposing to get that white snow at 18% grey. Usually about +2/3 to +1 EC will get you there. I know you don't want to hear this but your histogram is your friend in telling you if you got it correct. That and turn the option on in your camera menu to show "overexposure warning" or commonly know as blinkies. If you have blinkies in your review of your shot you might have gone just a bit to far with EC, turn it down 1/3 and try again.

2. Go to manual mode and set your own settings in. We will leave that one alone for now.

Now to your photo. What post processing steps did you take? What program are you using? Your computer will have little bearing on processing your photo other than how long it will take.

This one is an important one and when you start processing photos seriously for optimum results you really need to know if your colors on your screen and the exposures are accurate. The real only true way to do that is to calibrate your monitor. How do you know what is red, or green, or blue, or white! It is but another tool that will help you get the best results.

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Okay, I will try to answer everyone...

The editing is Canon's Zoom Browser EX. It came with my camera, so it is probably not exactly top of the line editing.

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Dbl,

I can't take the time right now to read and respond to your thoughts/questions...(I am at work..SHH!!!) cry

I will check the post out after work, I AM REALLY excited that you guys are going to help me with this! It has been a problem for YEARS!

P.S. How the heck did you know my camera's settings? I see you guys do that all the time and wondered...

fc

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FC,

I will keep it short, don't want you in trouble at work! I used an EXIF viewing program to see the settings on your photo.

I did open your photo in Zoom Browser and it looks like you edited under color contrast and maybe moved the slider on the bottom, contrast too far to the right.

We can help you later, now back to work!

437204288_VytMw-XL.jpg

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Okay, I will try to answer everyone...

The editing is Canon's Zoom Browser EX. It came with my camera, so it is probably not exactly top of the line editing.

Maybe not top of the line (I wouldn't know) but it is so dang user-friendly that I would have a hard time breaking myself of it completely. The window shown in the message above has a drop down for color adjustment, too. You can alter the levels of red, blue, and green. But I'll wait to hear the experts advice and learn from it as well. I know exactly what you mean by frustration. Keep at it. We will get there eventually!

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Zoom Browser works OK as a simplistic editing tool. I've used it to check focus points and make sure it was my mistake and not the cameras. It works well for comparing up to four images side by side. As far as editing your photos, you might want to consider additional software.

Probably the best bang for your buck that does some pretty powerful editing yet is very easy to use would be Photoshop Elements, or I like to call it Photoshop Lite because it has many of the features of the full blown program.

You can pick up a non-current copy for less than $30 and I believe even the current copy is only around $50. It has a lot of "auto" options that will get you started down the road until you are more comfortable with some more advanced editing.

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Probably the best bang for your buck that does some pretty powerful editing yet is very easy to use would be Photoshop Elements, or I like to call it Photoshop Lite because it has many of the features of the full blown program.

You can pick up a non-current copy for less than $30 and I believe even the current copy is only around $50. It has a lot of "auto" options that will get you started down the road until you are more comfortable with some more advanced editing.

Elements is all I use and it does everything I need. In fact, I'm still using version 3 and just checked, and you can pick up Elements 6 for $35 off evilbay. It's well worth the money.

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And because of a deal Adobe is offering, if you do pick up Elements 6, you can upgrade it to the full-blown Photoshop CS4 for $300, far, far below the full price of CS4, which is the current version. Not that a person needs CS4, simply that it's a much cheaper way to get the program than paying full price.

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