Category: Tips

September 5, 2019 / / Lightroom

I know – sometimes it’s too dark to shoot and you don’t have any off-camera kit, so you have to use your flash “on camera” But the light you get off a direct flash is horrible – there’s an example in the video below. It serves a purpose, but it creates a passport photo look rather than that creative look we’re all after as photographers So what can you do? Well with most Speedlites, you can point the head in almost any direction, so the light doesn’t go straight to…

October 2, 2018 / / Blog

Another series of Photography Workshops drew to an end in Manchester on the 26th September. It seems like ages since we started on our beginners evening in Leeds, which turned out to be the only evening where it rained! 2018 was amazingly dry and hot – it made the whole 10 workshops a joy.  So here’s a quick review of what we covered in our Photography Workshops – I’d designed them for absolute beginners to gradually learn technical and creative skills over the months.  Photography Workshop 1 – Leeds “Creative…

August 23, 2018 / / Blog

When you’ve done a shoot and have hundreds of shots to trawl through, you need a quick way to get the skin tone the right brighness on your subject. It’s not straightforward enough to use Auto Settings – that will take account of the background as well as the foreground and skin – so you can end up with all kinds of problems! Here’s an unedited shot of Brad – the lighting’s pretty cool, but I’m, not sure whether his skin’s right or not.  In general, Caucasian skin will be…

August 5, 2018 / / Lightroom

Our second portrait workshop the summer was with Nicola Papperazzo, Chloe Mason and Andy Blue McLaren. We split it into a couple of locations on the west end of Leeds city centre. Starting in the flowery Park Square, where I showed people how to use flowers in the foreground to add blurry texture – like this one of Nicola The sun light was low and warm, so we also made use of that with shots like this one of Chloe, where she’s looking straight towards the sun The sun soon left the…

July 17, 2018 / / Blog

Can mixing a holiday and photography ever work? So you’re off somewhere amazing for your holiday, with friends or family who probably are not photographers – or at least not as serious as you are. Can you really make this work?   The dream holiday photography…  For the die-hard-photographer who wants photography perfection, you really need to be up before dawn to capture the sunrise, in the best possible location which you have carefully researched! Then again in the evening, you need a couple of hours to get into position for…

June 4, 2018 / / Landscapes

Gone are the old days…  Stitching panoramic photos used to be a pain. you’d have to do all kinds of prep on each photo in LIGHTROOM first, then export them as high res files, then create a stack in PHOTOSHOP and merge them…. and it’d probably go wrong at some stage! The panoramic world has moved on Happily, this has all moved on and you can stitch photos in seconds using LIGHTROOM and no other program.  If you start off with 2 photos like these:- TOP PART OF PANORAMIC BOTTOM…

April 6, 2018 / / Blog

Facebook Hates Portrait Professional 17!  The bottom of the internet, where people comment on things with impunity, is full of bile and anger whenever Portrait Professional is mentioned.  Portrait Professional kept popping up on my feed, so decided to try the Demo version – it seemed to be pretty quick and effective IF you didn’t go mad with the sliders. A bit like HDR programs…  So I bought the £49 version – what the hell! Here’s a video of me using Portrait Professional 17…  Here’s a shot of the lovely Emily, taken…

March 5, 2018 / / Landscapes

The bright sky problem… We’ve all done it – had a great scene to shoot but not got the right filters to balance the bright sky and land! We end up with a boring bright sky and really dark foreground – it’s not ideal, but with most camera RAW files you can now fix this quickly in Lightroom. The bright sky solution In a nutshell, you can only do this with files where the sky isn’t totally blown out – there has to be some detail in there or nothing…

February 26, 2018 / / Lightroom

Age your photos in seconds! I’ve tried using “bought” LIGHTROOM presets many times and they all seem to have one thing in common… This makes perfect sense to any seasoned Photoshopper or Lightroom expert – but I guessed that most photographers don’t know about this. So here’s a video explaining how you do it – a quick “how to” guide so you can start making your own toned presets for free!  

December 4, 2017 / / Blog

Using LIGHTROOM to make a dreamy waterfall Here’s a shot from a recent workshop at Swaldale – it’s Crackpot Force, yes, that’s really a thing! The shot was underexposed, but I liked the shape – so gave it a go in Lightroom anyway. Things we explain:- black and white conversion basic controls like Highlights, Whites, Shadows  Clarity for a soft look vignetting cropping sharpening Kit Used   Canon 5D Mark 4 Canon 70-200 F2.8 L The video above shows what steps we did – and this is the before and after…