Get the Settings Right

13 minutes
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Here's the photo that's pretty much done right off the camera. You know, when you do your homework and all the elements come together, you can create some stunning images without really needed to needing to do anything to them. Let me show you. This is right up to the camera. I haven't done anything to this image. Let's see the settings.

So the settings one 200th of a second f8 ISO 320 at 200 millimeters. So let me explain to you why I have it in such a fast shutter speed and kind of a lower f stop. So NFA still gives me my trees in focus on my horizon in focus. I was at 200 millimeter When you are zooming out, the chances of your lens vibrating or your photo being fuzzy, are very, very high. So you have to always compensate for that and shoot at a very fast shutter speed. I should have actually been higher, but I believe I was on a tripod.

So basically, when you're at 200 millimeters and more, you will run into issues where some of your images are fuzzy. And that's why the more zoom you have, for some reason, you just get camera shake, it's just what it is, the bigger the lens, the more complicated it gets. So that's why I ran up my soul to 3:20am I brought down my f stop so I could get at least one two hundredths of a second. That's a fast enough shutter speed for me to choose to not get any any Any image blurb. So one of the things about landscape photography is you can never control the light Some days are really, really nice, some are mediocre, and sometimes they're just perfect. landscape photography is so challenging, and it's one of the only forms of photography where you cannot control your environment.

The only thing you can control is your camera settings and yourself. So as you can see, this turned out beautifully. I just know where to go. This is where I take all my students on my Everglades photography workshops. This is where we wrap up today. And in fact, they shot this during one of those workshops, and it turned out just incredible.

So let's get started on the editing. So first, we'll come to our basic panel. Now the mood I wanted to give this photo was just what you see here. I just wanted this trees to be dark, kind of the outline kind of like Africa ish. You know, when you picture even somebody started singing that Africa's honk during this workshop, which was kind of funny, because everybody was kind of thinking it. And then she just started going, I forgot how it goes, you know that like that Lion King song.

So it was really good and it made everybody really happy. So as you can see, I shot this with the sun right in the middle of this cloud, we only had about three seconds to shoot this because the sun literally creeped away immediately and this clouds were being really really obnoxious. So I capture what I wanted right off the camera. So what we're going to do is we're just going to enhance this just a tad nothing too crazy. We don't there's not a lot we need to do. So let's get started.

First thing I want to do is I want to come to the temperature. Now it was hot it is the Everglades. So I want to warm it up. As you can see, when I warm this up, this rats this orange, this yellow, they just come up, come out a little better. It's just amazing. It's beautiful.

I really like this image, I can just take myself back to the moment when I shot it. And it just brings up a lot of good memories. So once I warm it up, then I want to it my exposure is just right. I'll bring it up just so you guys can see the foreground. So this is the Everglades. This is all a swamp, you cannot walk in here.

On this you want to get really wet and bitten by an alligator or a snake. Plus its its waist high water. So anyways, so what I wanted to do is I just wanted to get the silhouette of the trees, so I'll click the exposure word twice. So because I think I exposed it correctly in the field, and I'll bring my contrast up just a tad. So, as you can see, when I bring it up, my colors come out a little more in my blogs get blacker, which is really nice. It's what I want.

Now I'm going to bring my shadows out just a tad, just so you can kind of see this, this sticks. But you can't I don't want the viewer to make out exactly what's down here. I want to keep it a mystery. To me, it's intriguing. It makes the photo a lot cooler if all you see like in the distance is the sticks poking out of the ground. So again, what I'm thinking, my composition, really it's the sun and this tree line.

So we're your eye immediately is going to gravitate to the sun. And it's just going to wander around this tree line. And you're immediately going to in your head is going to process your brain is going to process that image. And then you're going to start looking for what's there. So To me this little steaks, this little trees, it makes sense to show a little tiny bit of them, but not all of it. So by opening up the shadows, right about there, it gives, it gives the viewer that, that mystery, that intrigue, if you will.

So I think that looks really good. Now let's see what our highlights do. I always bring them down to bring up the color more, but in this case, it's not really doing much. So I'm going to click the highlights twice, and that will reset my slider. Now let's try the whites. The whites, I don't think they're going to do much in this image.

But as you can see, if I bring him up, it lights up the the top of the trees. Now let me reset that. It's very subtle, you can really see it. So maybe right about there. Now, this image looks Amazing. Immediately right off the bat, it was almost ready out of camera.

So let's see before and after with this a few sliders. So look at that we brought up the yellows, we brought up the orange. And we created kind of, you can see this tree line right here, this trees in a little bit of the foreground crank, kind of creating an intrigue on the viewers mind. So I think we're doing quite well. So next thing I want to do is I just want to bring up the vibrance a little bit. So don't be afraid to bring it all the way up.

See what it does. Now, like I say, just give it subtle changes. I think this looks really nice. Now the clarity slider, this creates that HDR Look, I don't really like that. So I never really use it. Sometimes I like to test out photos, see what it what it does.

I don't really like it in this photo. So I'm just going to To leave that alone, so click click the word twice and that will reset your slider back to zero. So I think that looks really nice guys. I don't think that I need to do anything much more. So now we'll enable the profile corrections. Same so it just works it.

Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't always remove chromatic aberration. And I think that looks really nice. Now here's, let's do, here's a trick. Let's do it on Split Toning. And here you have the highlights, and here you have the shadows. So let's pick the highlights.

And we'll pick up maybe right there. So let me just show you what that does. So look at her sky. He kind of paints it so there's there's no saturation. So this is a saturation all the way at the bottom and just bring it up a tad. And he just paints it a little bit.

Do you see that? Don't get too crazy, very subtle. Maybe right about there. So that's pretty good. And I think that's a completed image. If you want to sharpen it up, I think the image is just fine.

We can bring up the sharpen maybe a 72. For the treeline. Option key. Hold it down and your masking slider, just right about there. Now remember what's White is being sharpened, but black is being left untouched. And that looks really nice.

Always check for sensor spots. If you have any sensor spots, please remove them. Now here's another thing I want to do real quick. Let me close out of that. See this glow that the sun is putting out we can do one of two things. things, we can either make the glow come out a little more, or hide it completely.

So let's start with bringing that out a little more. So open your adjustment brush, this click the effect or twice, that resets my sliders. Let's create a brush maybe, about that Bay. And then let's bring up the exposure, maybe a plus 40 and then maybe bring that up right there. And now we can see and create this just a little bitter. see what that does.

Now I can bring this up or down to taste and I think that looks nice right about there. So let me show you before and after. There's before and there's after just very, very subtle. As you can see very, very subtle. Brush but it's it's this subtle changes that make a huge difference. You know, when a viewer is looking at this photo, they're gonna go down here and they're gonna be like what is that, you know, it's this tiny little subtle changes that make big differences.

So now let's try the other the other way. So we'll open up the brush. I'm going to leave this brush here, I'm not gonna delete it. But I will click the effect key twice. We'll bring this up to negative 60. And now this close this off all right, let's bring it up more.

And so that would be without the Halo. So either way you can do one or the other. Prefer I prefer that. I think that looks a whole lot cooler with this little glow on the ground, I think creates a much nicer image. I think it creates more interest for the viewer room. You're trying to tell a story.

You're trying to tell people what's going on where you are, you're trying to pass on that feeling that you had. I'm telling you, I felt like I was kind of in an African jungle and, and the Lion King was going to come out. I really felt that way. When I looked at all my students and that somebody started singing that song, I could tell that we all felt that way. So you want to portray that on your photos. You want to tell people what you were feeling.

So when somebody looks at this, I want him to be like, Wow, that looks like that movie. And that's what you're trying to create with all of your photographs. You're trying to tell a story. So the suppressor y key before and after. There's before and there's after in even though this photo was ready right out of the camera, with a few tiny tweaks, we created a much nicer image that's ready for print and ready to hang on a wall.

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