Tuesday, November 12, 2013

My Photography One-On-One Class

I just wanted to give you an update as to how my classes are going. I had a recent one this Sunday with Jeff B, he does great photography, I just helped him make it better, and make more sence as to why he was doing what. Here is a message Jeff Sent me after class that I posted on my website (http://www.LeslieWilkesPhotography.com) and now I am posting on my blog because I wanted to share his photograph. " I thoroughly enjoyed your photography class last Sunday. While I was already pretty familiar with the components that make up exposure (ISO, aperture, and shutter speed) the refresher was welcome and the practical application was invaluable - I was pretty solid on what it was but you taught me how to use it to my advantage. In addition, the post processing was also greatly appreciated. I am attaching the shot of the Schemerhorn fountain as both the camera and LR processing as JPG. The Lightroom image is the one ending in LR - which I like much better. Again, thank you for your efforts and I am looking forward to my next class. Feel free to use these pix on your site as student images with attribution. -Jeff And as we had discussed on Sunday, I am looking forward to a follow-up class - Probably a lot more lightroom - While I remember a lot of what we covered, I am sure some of it has slipped past. I am doing some post processing on the shots we took Sunday to refresh. Since I have them handy for comparison (and I can include the .nef if you wish) I am attaching the camera jpg and my LR jpg from the Shemerhorn fountain. Because of the difference, I intend to completely stop shooting raw+basic (.nef and .jpg) and just go with raw only the next time I shoot. Feel free to use the images on your web site in conjunction with your class. I would appreciate attribution though." -Jeff The attached photograph is Jeff Boarmans of the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Downtown Nashville, he did a great job with allowing the water to flow in a timed tripod photograph.

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Thursday, November 7, 2013

How Much Editing Is Too Much?

How much editing is too much?

This is one of those things that depending upon your artistic eye, could be too much or too little for some peoples taste. When I look at editing people as a family/portrait photographer, I usually try not to do too much to them. I want them to be as natural as possible, and to be recognizable to the audience that will be viewing the photograph. With this said, if the client wants a few years removed, then you remove a few years, keeping in mind that you don’t have to take them back to pre-school for them to look good. So when you are confronted with this question, I guess the answer is to do minimal work on people, unless instructed by the client. Then make sure you are smart enough, for the both of you, to know when to quit. If you are applying this to a fashion shoot, or something commercial, then you will do a lot more editing on whatever is human in the photograph because that is what the industry calls for. Again, you can be smart about your edits and make them as true to reality as possible, while maintaining a high level of service to your customer, the commercial agency. When photographing these types of events, it is not always about reality within the picture, it is about ultra-reality and fantasy. The photographer and the art department are expected to take liberties with the final product, so they can survive in a very intense commercial market.

Does that make it right or wrong? For me, I like taking photographs of families and portraits of individuals, and just touching them up enough to remove some blemishes or slight wrinkles is true to composition. I want to maintain the years they have earned, and not deny them of that in their final product. On the other hand, if the customer asks me to take more, then I will oblige them, but make sure they still look like themselves once the photo is finished.

I don’t mind working with cityscapes or anything that doesn’t have people in them, the sky is the limit, and the artistic eye can see infinite possibilities. I could then do a 180 and be just as happy with a few adjustments to the lighting and the clouds in the sky and call it a day.

How much editing is too much? I guess it depends on the project I’m working on, and always what the client asks for. Customer service and satisfaction are always my main goals when I deliver the final product.

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Leslie Wilkes Owner/Photographer