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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Fix It Friday: Constructive Feedback



Here is my SOOC Shot:

I thought since this weeks theme is blue, I would show you one of the other photos I was considering entering in this weeks challenge. Here is Mr. Moo playing at the Fort Bragg Fire Department’s Water Fights during Paul Bunyan Days.

Nikon D40x

55-200 mm AF w/lens hood


DSC_0625 Isn’t he a little dark?  and that skin. . .what to do about that skin?

Well here’s what I came up with. I did a tighter crop around his face, bumped the saturation down a bit, added some warmth, and cleaned up his face a little. DSC_0625_au Now, what to do about his eyes? I can never get his eyes to look right. They are so dark.




  1. It's a cute shot! :) I actually wouldn't crop it...

    I would cool the photo down a little bit which may help with the darkness of the photo. It's a little warm/orange. And I may adjust some fill light in Camera Raw.

  2. if you are shooting jpeg, you will probably always have "too red" skin tones! that's a nikon issue. if you shoot raw, that will pretty much go away. what was your iso & ss? it looks a bit grainy. i try to shoot with as low an iso as i can if the available light allows to avoid the grain at a higher iso. if you want to brighten up his eyes, have him facing light(not direct sunlight, but some nice northern light)to get some catchlights in there. the sooc looks a bit yellow, and the edit a bit pink. i would prefer skin tones have more yellow than magenta/red tone, you could try a color balance adjustment or hue/saturation adjustment and a bump in curves to lighten things up.

  3. Mr. Moo is quite the cutie. I posted my "fix" and instructions on my Flickr stream. Here is the link:

  4. Okay just figured out how to extract the EXIF data!
    ISO: 450
    doesn't give me a shutter speed though.

  5. I think its a good picture! You dont seem to need help with your subject or posing but more with the technical side. That lens (I used to own it) doesnt have a large aperture. I think it starts at 3.5 or even 4.5. If you were shooting wide open say f/2 or f/2.8, you may not have had to up your ISO. A high ISO (450 is high for that camera I think, I used to have the d40 and the iso was terrible) can create lots of noise. And in this case, to me (in my opinion) created color noise. Thats why the skin looks that way. In fact, I just took some bridals over the weekend, and I think because of the bad lighting I was using I had some noisy pictures. Anyway, maybe invest in the 500 1.8 or 1.4 lens. It will definitely help brighten things up and also so you dont have to use your ISO so often or at all. Sorry, Im not so great with words, but I hope that helps!

  6. This is a very interesting shot from a color stand point. It's almost as if there were two sources of light, one more orange/yellow and one more pink/purple. See how his head is orange on the top and pink in his face. I'm not sure if he's a red head or what, but it makes for an interesting editing situation. I edited each part separately to try to bring the colors together in the middle.

    Something I'd like to suggest is that you check your in-camera settings to make sure you have the most neutral settings chosen. You want the saturation to be on zero. No vivid setting or anything like that. Nikon cameras tend to oversaturate the reds really fast and when you have in-camera settings that exacerbate that saturation it just creates problems for you later.

    One more thing is to start looking for the light in his eyes. You can do this without a camera in your hands. Just look at his little face and notice when there are little sparkles of light in his eyes. If you take a picture with those "catchlights" in his eyes his whole cute little face will come alive. In this shot, there is no light at all. The viewer is left wondering what has distracted him from the camera. Of course at that age it could be anything, LOL!

    After I corrected the color as best I could, I ran coffeeshop's powder room action and softened the skin. Then I saved it and ran noiseware on "weaker noise." Then I pulled the filtered file on top of the original and changed the opacity to 87% and erased back his hair and clothes. A small additional boost in curves and I was finished.

    I did a color edit:

    a b/w edit:

    and a coffeeshop golden vintage (on top of the b/w) edit:

    I think the original crop is fine :). It's a cute shot and I hope I could help a little!

  7. Thank you everyone so much for stopping by and giving me such wonderful feedback! I appreciate the time and effort you all took. I will definitely be taking your advice. I think I need to bite the bullet and upgrade my photoshop or buy elements.

    Thank you again.

  8. The dark eyes can't really be fixed in this picture, but a little trick to remember for next time is to put your subject in the shade with their eyes facing the bright area outside of the shade. The eyes will then reflect the light and sparkle. If you are aware of that sparkle and start looking for it you will begin to see it all the time and know how to position yourself to get it

    I know it's easier said than done, especially with a child that age ;)


Thank you for stopping by. Words of encouragement are always welcome. I will try to encourage you as well!