Nikon Firmware Updates for D7200, D500, D750, D810, and WT-7 Released

Posted March 7th, 2017 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink

D500_16_80E_front34l.high

Nikon has released firmware updates for four of their cameras and for the WT-7 wireless transmitter. The updates fix a variety of issues related to wireless transmission of images, custom settings, distortion control, histogram displays, and some lingering software bugs.

Nikon D810 Firmware Version 1.12: Download Link

– The WT-7 wireless transmitter is now supported.

– Fixed the following issues:

Multiple exposures were not recorded correctly.

Incorrect histograms would be displayed for some images viewed in the RGB histogram display during playback.

If On was selected for Auto distortion control, distortion would appear at the edges of photos taken with NEF (RAW) + JPEG fine selected for Image quality and Medium selected for JPEG/TIFF recording > Image size.

Photos taken immediately after lenses were exchanged would not be recorded at the correct exposure.

The protect icon did not display correctly.

If On was selected for Auto distortion control, the camera would stop responding when the user attempted to take pictures with NEF (RAW) + JPEG fine selected for Image quality, Small selected for NEF (RAW) recording > Image size, and RAW primary – JPEG secondary selected for Secondary slot function.

Shutter speeds for the electronic front-curtain shutter would sometimes be faster than 1/2000 s.

Pictures would sometimes not be recorded.

D750 top

Here’s an overhead shot showing the articulated screen and the smaller LCD panel on the top of the camera.

Nikon D750 Firmware Version 1.11: Download Link

– The WT-7 wireless transmitter is now supported.

– Fixed the following issues:

Incorrect histograms would be displayed for some images viewed in the RGB histogram display during playback.

If On was selected for Auto distortion control, distortion would appear at the edges of photos taken with NEF (RAW) + JPEG fine selected for Image quality and Medium selected for Image size.

The option chosen for Custom Setting f5 (Customize command dials) > Change main/sub in CUSTOM SETTINGS MENU group f (Controls) would not be saved when Save settings was selected for Save/load settings in the SETUP MENU.

Pictures would sometimes not be recorded.

Nikon D500 Firmware Version 1.12: Download Link

– Fixed an issue that resulted in unreliable connections between the camera and the iOS 10.2 version of the SnapBridge app.

Nikon D7200 Firmware Version 1.02: Download Link

– The WT-7 wireless transmitter is now supported.

– Fixed the following issues:

If On was selected for Auto distortion control, distortion would appear at the edges of photos taken with NEF (RAW) + JPEG fine selected for Image quality and Medium selected for Image size.

Pictures would sometimes not be recorded.

Optimal exposure would sometimes not be achieved in photos taken in live view using a lens with electromagnetically controlled aperture (type E and PC-E lenses).

Nikon WT-7 Wireless Transmitter Firmware Version 1.1: Download Link

The D810, D810A, D750, and D7200 are now supported.

HTTP server mode is now available in Turkish.

Fixed an issue that prevented PASV mode connections to certain ftp servers.





Adobe Updates Lightroom CC 2015.5, ACR 9.5, Photoshop CC

Posted March 18th, 2016 by   |  Photography, Software, Uncategorized  |  Permalink

New Updates for Lightroom CC, Camera RAW, Photoshop CC

Adobe just released an update to their imaging software including Lightroom CC 2015.5/6.5, Camera RAW 9.5, and Photoshop CC. There are a quite a few software bug fixes in tehse updates including some significant fixes for tethering, especially with Canon cameras like the 5DM3, 5Ds, 1DsM3.

The bigger news however is Adobe now has support for a bunch of new cameras like the Nikon D5, Nikon D500, Canon EOS-1D X Mark II, Canon Rebel T6, Canon EOS 80D and the Sony Alpha a6300. This marks the first time I can remember that Adobe and Nikon/Canon/Sony worked together to allow shooters of these new cameras the capability to process RAW photos before the cameras are released to the public. Kudos Adobe.

ACR gray

The new interface for Adobe Camera RAW is gray vs. the older white interface.

On the Adobe Camera Raw side, Adobe changed the default color schema in ACR to gray. This better matches other software interfaces and is a welcome change.

Updating Software

To update your software, use the Creative Cloud application/utility from Adobe as shown here.

CreativeCloud-update

Alternatively, you can download the files directly here:

Camera Raw 9.5 direct download for Windows and Mac

DNG Converter 9.5 download for Windows and Mac

 

Lightroom CC Installations

Please select Help > Updates to use the update mechanism in the Creative Cloud app.

Direct download links:  Win | Mac

 

 

Links for more information:

Adobe’s Lightroom Journal http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal/

Lightroom CC 2015.5 update http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal/2016/03/lr-cc-2015-5-now-available.html

Adobe Camera RAW 9.5 update http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal/2016/03/camera-raw-9-5-now-available.html

 

 

Bugs Fixed in Lightroom CC 2015.5 / 6.5

 

New Camera Support in Lightroom CC 2015.5 / 6.5

  • Canon EOS-1D X Mark II
  • Canon EOS 80D
  • Canon EOS 1300D (Rebel T6, Kiss X80)
  • Nikon D5
  • Nikon D500
  • Olympus PEN-F
  • Olympus SH-3
  • Panasonic DMC-CM10
  • Panasonic DMC-GF8
  • Panasonic DMC-ZS100 (DMC-ZS110, DMC-TZ100, DMC-TZ101, DMC-TZ110, DMC-TX1)
  • Samsung NX3300
  • Sony Alpha a6300 (ILCE-6300)
  • Yuneec CGO4

 

 

 

Bugs Fixed in Camera Raw 9.5

  • Fix crash/hang in Camera Raw and DNG Converter on some Mac systems when saving multiple images.
  • Fix corruption issue that would prevent DNG images originally created by Parrot Bebop Drone devices from being opened after metadata updates.
  • Pressing the Option/Alt key while click-dragging on a perimeter handle of a Radial Filter will adjust only that side of the filter. This change in behavior was made to match Lightroom’s behavior. Previously, Option/Alt-clicking on a Radial Filter in Camera Raw would delete that filter.
  • Camera Raw Filter now displays the histogram and RGB color readouts using the assigned color space of the corresponding Photoshop document. Previously, Camera Raw Filter always displayed its histogram and RGB color readouts using the ProPhoto color space.
  • Improve quality of Boundary Warp for some panoramas.
  • Fix bug where EXIF metadata for SIGMA 50mm f/1.4 ART lens on Canon was incorrectly identified as Zeiss Milvus 50mm f/1.4.

 

New Camera Support in Camera Raw 9.5

  • Canon EOS-1D X Mark II
  • Canon EOS 80D
  • Canon EOS 1300D (Rebel T6, Kiss X80)
  • Nikon D5
  • Nikon D500
  • Olympus PEN-F
  • Olympus SH-3
  • Panasonic DMC-CM10
  • Panasonic DMC-GF8
  • Panasonic DMC-ZS100 (DMC-ZS110, DMC-TZ100, DMC-TZ101, DMC-TZ110, DMC-TX1)
  • Samsung NX3300
  • Sony Alpha a6300 (ILCE-6300)
  • Yuneec CGO4

 

New Lens Profile Support in Lightroom CC 2015.5 / 6.5 & Camera RAW

Mount Name
Android Huawei Nexus 6P
Android LG Nexus 5X
Canon EF SIGMA 50-100mm F1.8 DC HSM A016
Canon EF-M Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Canon EF-M Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Canon EF-M Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Canon EF-M Rokinon 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Canon EF-M Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Canon EF-M Samyang 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Canon EF-M Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Canon EF-M Samyang 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Canon EF-M Samyang 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Fujifilm Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Fujifilm Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Fujifilm Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Fujifilm Rokinon 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Fujifilm Rokinon 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Fujifilm Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Fujifilm Samyang 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Fujifilm Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Fujifilm Samyang 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Fujifilm Samyang 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Nikon F Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
Nikon F Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G
Nikon F Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR
Nikon F Nikon AF-S Zoom-NIKKOR 28-70mm f/2.8D IF-ED
Olympus Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Olympus Bower 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Olympus Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Olympus Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Olympus Rokinon 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Olympus Rokinon 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Olympus Rokinon 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Olympus Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Olympus Samyang 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Olympus Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Olympus Samyang 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Olympus Samyang 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Olympus SIGMA 30mm F1.4 DC DN C016
Panasonic Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Panasonic Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Panasonic Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Panasonic Rokinon 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Panasonic Rokinon 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Panasonic Rokinon 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Panasonic Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Panasonic Samyang 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Panasonic Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Panasonic Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Panasonic Samyang 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Pentax K HD PENTAX-DA 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED WR
Samsung NX Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Samsung NX Bower 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Samsung NX Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Samsung NX Rokinon 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Samsung NX Rokinon 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Samsung NX Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Samsung NX Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Samsung NX Samyang 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
SIGMA SIGMA 50-100mm F1.8 DC HSM A016
Sony E Bower 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Sony E Rokinon 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Sony E Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Sony E Rokinon 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Sony E Samyang 16mm f2 ED AS UMC CS
Sony E Samyang 21mm f/1.4 ED AS UMC CS
Sony E Samyang 300mm f/6.3 ED UMC CS
Sony E SIGMA 30mm F1.4 DC DN C016
Sony FE Rokinon 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Sony FE Rokinon 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Sony FE Samyang 24mm f1.4 ED AS IF UMC
Sony FE Samyang 85mm f1.4 AS IF UMC
Sony FE Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM
Sony FE Sony FE 85mm f/1.4 GM

 

 





March 2016 Newsletter Posted

Posted March 2nd, 2016 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink

GH Panos

Our March 2016 newsletter is posted here: https://visadventures.com/newsletters/2016-03-newsletter/

Articles this month include:

CreativeLive Partnership

New Instructor and Author – Rick Hulbert

New Workshops in The Wooldands, Texas

Stuff I Like This Month

Book Review: Picture Perfect Lighting

Book Review: Studio Anywhere

Digital Tidbits: A Custom Approach to Panoramas Using Lightroom CC and Photoshop CC

Business Updates

 

Check out all of our previous newsletters here: https://visadventures.com/newsletters/





CreativeLive Photoshop Week Panorama Workshop

Posted February 16th, 2016 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink

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New CreativeLive Panorama Workshop

I’ll be teaching a class for CreativeLive during the industry’s biggest event of the year – Photoshop Week 2016. My workshop will be on producing beautiful panoramas using Lightroom CC, ACR (Adobe Camera RAW) and Photoshop CC. During the week, there are multiple instructors teaching in different learning tracks that you’ll be able to watch live for free. Other instructors include Tim Grey, Ben Willmore, Lindsay Adler, Matt Kloskowski, Jared Platt, Dave Cross and many more.

Tune in to watch the live panorama workshop broadcast at 1:15 PM PST, February 22, 2016. For more information on this specific class, check out the workshop page over at CreativeLive: Creating Panoramas in Photoshop and Lightroom – Mike Hagen

Photoshop Week 2016 Full Schedule: https://www.creativelive.com/photoshop-week-2016

RSVP today to watch live for free. Signing up early also allows you to pre-order the complete Photoshop Week training package for half-price.

More Press from CreativeLive’s Website

Discover the tools you need to remake the world in your image. Learn from some of the world’s most inspiring photographers and retouchers. Unlock the power of Photoshop and Lightroom to transform the images you have into the images you want.

On February 22nd-27th watch the free live stream of the industry’s biggest week. Learn exciting new ways to enhance your work and remake your post-production workflow. Create images that stand out and inspire. No matter how many years you’ve been in the game, find the tools, techniques and shortcuts you need to bring your unique creative vision to life.

This year, you can chose from 4 unique course tracks to find the skills you need. We now have a Beginner’s track and an Advanced track, so you can master the essentials and then graduate to more complex techniques. Get in the habit of shooting with post-production ideas in mind with our Shoot to Edit classes. After you get your skills locked down, keep up to date on the latest Photoshop techniques and designs with the Trends series.

Make the most out of what you learn this week! Our partners at Adobe are offering 20% off the Creative Cloud Photography plan to new subscribers if you join us for Photoshop Week – get access to Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop, and Adobe’s versatile mobile apps to craft amazing images anytime. RSVP now, and we’ll email you a link to this exclusive offer.





Lightroom CC Update – Boundary Warp and Nikon Tethering

Posted January 27th, 2016 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink
Boundary Warp

Here’s the new Lightroom CC Boundary Warp control window. A great new addition for Lightroom and Adobe Camera RAW.

Adobe released a new version of Lightroom today for the Creative Cloud and stand-alone versions. Lightroom CC 2015.4 and Lightroom 6.4 address a number of bugs while also updating the software for new cameras and lenses.

As far as I’m concerned though, the two most important things about this release are the Boundary Warp feature in Lightroom CC and the ability to tether Nikon cameras for photographers using the newest Mac OSX 10.11 (El Capitan).

Here’s the link to the press release at the Adobe website: Lightroom CC 2015.4 Press Release

1. Panorama Boundary Warp

Boundary warp is a brand-new feature available in the Lightroom CC version aimed at improving panorama merging. It is designed to warp the corners and edges of the panorama so you don’t lose those areas of the image.

This slider works exceptionally well when merging photos taken with extreme wide-angle lenses. You don’t typically get much distortion with focal lengths of 50mm or longer, but you get quite a bit with 14mm and 20mm lenses. Boundary Warp helps solve this problem in a very easy-to-use interface.

Check out this video I created to help further explain the tool.

YouTube Link: Boundary Warp (https://youtu.be/2yt-A6OoZuc)

 

2. Tethering with OS X 10.11 (El Capitan).

Another great fix with this release of Lightroom CC/6 is the ability to tether Nikon cameras in Mac OSX 10.11 (El Capitan). Finally!

Unfortunately, operating system updates can be very troublesome for us photographers. We heavily rely on software for our businesses, so any hiccup in the operation of our computers is a major deal. The most recent update to the Macintosh operating system, El Capitan, broke the ability of Lightroom CC/6 to tether with Nikon cameras.

For me, that was a deal breaker to upgrading to El Capitan since I use Lightroom tethering for my portrait and commercial work. Tethering really helps when shooting with clients on set as it allows them to immediately collaborate on images.

The newest version of Lightroom CC/6 now fixes the tethering issue for us Nikon shooters and represents my last obstacle to upgrading my Mac to El Capitan.

List of Changes/Additions in Lightroom CC/6

Fixed Bugs

– Auto Sync of some settings failed when using smart previews

– Lightroom would ignore model-specific custom default settings for some cameras, including some Leica and Sony models.

– Crop resets to image bounds when adjusting rotation via slider

– In Lights Out mode, an image would “disappear” if a customer uses the Undo functionality

– SIGMA 50mm f1.4 ART lens was incorrectly identified as Zeiss Milvus 50mm f1.4

– Soft Proofing RGB readout values differed for same file between 5.7.1 and 6.x

– Import from iPhoto would result in all photos receiving a “pick” flag

– Comments from Lightroom web come in to Lightroom on the desktop as already “read.”

– Lightroom would not display the correct EXIF metadata for some video files generated by Canon, Fuji and Panasonic cameras

– Vertical panoramas created using Merge could appear with the wrong orientation

– The video cache did not respect the maximum size specified in the preferences

– Customers experienced issues importing video files in some scenarios

– Tethering Nikon cameras on Mac OS X 10.11(El Capitan) did not work properly

New Camera Support in Lightroom CC 2015.4 / 6.4

– Fujifilm X70

– Fujifilm X-E2S

– Fujifilm X-Pro2

– Leica M (Typ 262)

– Leica X-U (Typ 113)

– Panasonic DMC-ZS60 (DMC-TZ80, DMC-TZ81, DMC-TZ85)

– Phase One IQ150

– Sony ILCA-68 (A68)

Additional Updates in Lightroom CC 2015.4 / 6.4

– Nikon 1 J4 Camera Matching Profile added

– The panorama merging process should complete roughly twice as fast as Lightroom 6.3

– Improved quality when applying Auto Straighten and Upright “Level” mode

– A preference was added to the Mac to prevent accidental “speed swiping”

– Metadata is added to merged panoramas to support Photoshop’s Adaptive Wide Angle filter

– Customers can now set the location of where photos are stored when downloaded from Lightroom mobile or Lightroom web in the preference panel or – contextually in the folder panel

– Thumbnails update much quicker when copying and pasting settings in the grid view

– Images load faster in the Library module when you are zoomed in and navigating images

– Tethered support added for the Nikon D5500 and Nikon D7200





Panoramas About Town

Posted January 22nd, 2016 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink
Gig Harbor Pano

Panorama of the Gig Harbor waterfront. Nikon D750, 14-24mm f/2.8. Processed in Adobe Lightroom CC and stitched in Adobe Photoshop CC. Converted to black and white in Nik Silver Efex Pro.

I make a habit of carrying a camera with me just about everywhere I go, especially when heading out on short errands. I love finding new photographic gems in my hometown of Gig Harbor, Washington.

Last week, I headed down to the Post Office to ship some books and took a quick side trip to photograph the Gig Harbor waterfront with my Nikon D750 and 14-24mm f/2.8 lens. A couple days prior to that, I took a one-hour break from writing to walk across the Tacoma Narrows Bridge with my D750 and 24-70mm f/2.8 lens. In both cases, I decided to create panoramas of the scenes before me.

Narrows Bridge

Panorama from center span of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Nikon D750, 24-70mm. Processed in Adobe Lightroom CC. Stitched together in Adobe Photoshop CC.

I’ve been shooting more panoramas lately because I really enjoy the entire process from capture to print. I also love being able to capture the atmosphere of the scene in a way most people don’t normally see. On the technical side, I thoroughly enjoy the discipline it takes to create a good-looking pano. There are a lot of settings and techniques that have to be executed well in order to produce an image that works.

For example:

– Exposure control for the darkest and brightest areas of the scene

– Depth of field

– Composition

– White balance

– Panning technique

– Dealing with subjects that are moving

– Wind

– Sun

– Clouds

– Overlap percentage for individual frames

– Lens choice

– Distortion control

– Developing the images in software (Lightroom CC) so all images work together in the final panorama

– Stitching the images together in Lightroom CC or Photoshop CC

– Post-processing the panorama to fix problem areas

– Final presentation and printing

Some panoramas work really well and others are just, well, boring. Sometimes, you don’t know until you’ve gone through all the work and have the final image on your computer screen. In the case of the two images I’ve shown here, I like the image of the boats from downtown Gig Harbor, but don’t really care for the Narrows Bridge image. I think the reason why the Narrows Bridge shot falls flat for me is the clouds lack texture and form. I’ll need to go back on another day when the sky is more dramatic.

Because of my love of panoramas, I have decided to teach a panorama workshop on when I travel to The Woodlands, Texas in April. My partner in crime, Rick Hulbert (http://www.rickhulbertphotography.com), and I are running a series of four different workshops from April 4th – 9th, including one on panorama photography. These workshops are open for all camera users (Canon, Nikon, Fuji, Olympus, etc.) and all skill levels.

While in The Woodlands, we are joining The Woodlands Camera Club to celebrate their 10-year anniversary. After their party, we’ll run workshops and photo walks on a variety of topics like autofocus for action, urban and street photography, studio lighting, HDR photography, and more.

You should join us! More information here:

https://visadventures.com/workshops/the-woodlands-texas-april-5-9-2016/

TheWoodlands-workshop-flyer





Autofocus Tip – AF for Panoramas

Posted October 29th, 2015 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink

Text

Ferry

Eimskip ferry boat in Westman Islands, Iceland.

Creating panoramas with digital cameras is easier than ever these days. Since most image editing software packages have panorama stitching utilities built in, building the final image is often as simple as selecting the photograph sequence and then clicking “merge to panorama.” Even though the software side of things is fairly simple, making sure your camera’s focus settings are configured properly will make a big difference in the final quality of your panorama.

Manhattan

New York City skyline panorama from the Staten Island ferry.

As most of you know, the process of taking a panorama with a camera requires you to capture a sequence of photos horizontally or vertically. In other words, take a photo on the left side of the scene, then pan the camera to the right a little bit and take another image. Repeat this sequence until you’ve captured the entire scene in front of you. You’ll use these photos in your software program to stitch together the final single image.

With respect to autofocus, the most important thing to consider is to make sure the focus distance remains constant from picture to picture in the panorama sequence. If the focus changes from shot to shot, then the software will have a difficult time merging photos. Even if the software is able to merge together images with different focus values, the final image will look weird because one section might be blurry while another section next to it looks sharp.

New York post office

Post Office Building, New York City, NY.

So, the solution is to make sure that you lock focus distance for the entire sequence of shots. Here are four ways to lock focus:

1. Set focus manually. I like using autofocus to acquire focus initially, then I switch off autofocus on my camera body for the entire image sequence. This ensures focus remains constant from picture to picture.

Focus switch

Setting the AF switch on your camera to Manual focus will prevent refocusing before each shot.

2. Use the AF-L (autofocus lock) button on your camera. Press and hold the AF-L button on the back of your camera to lock focus during the sequence.

AF-L

The AF-L button can be programmed to lock focus.

3. Use back-button AF. If you’ve programmed your camera to operate with back-button autofocus, then you don’t need to change any other settings on the camera. Basically, take the photographs and the camera won’t re-focus from the shutter release button.

AF-ON button

If you use the AF-ON button on your camera, then release your thumb from the button while shooting. This will lock AF.

4. Press and hold the shutter release button in AF-S (single servo) mode. If you focus your camera the traditional way with the shutter release button, then you’ll need to press and hold the shutter release button for the duration of the photo sequence. This is difficult to do since you’ll be panning your camera between shots and you might accidentally lift your finger from the shutter release button at some point. Then, when you go back to press the shutter release button, the camera will re-focus. The easiest thing to do if you focus with the shutter release button is to switch your camera to manual focus.

Cheney Stadium

Cheney Stadium at dusk. Tacoma, Washington

——

Want to learn more about autofocus on Nikon cameras? Check out our brand new book titled The Nikon Autofocus System, Mastering Focus for Sharp Images Every Time.

eBook

The Nikon Autofocus System eBook at Rocky Nook

Paperback

The Nikon Autofocus System at Rocky Nook

The Nikon Autofocus System at Amazon

Autographed Copies

The Nikon Autofocus System – Autographed Copies

Nikon AF cover

 





Pushing Back Detail Using Lightroom CC

Posted August 25th, 2015 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink
hagen_150805_0050-2

I used Lightroom CC’s highlight slider to push back detail in the bright regions of this photograph.

 

Taking pictures on a bright sunny day presents all kinds of challenges for our photography. One of the biggest issues we find is with white areas because they tend to blowout and lose detail from the bright reflected sun. Shooting images in RAW format will allow you recover some of the lost highlights in software as long as you don’t over expose the scene too much.

I work with a lot of photographers who are afraid of shooting RAW because of the perceived extra workload required to process them in software. I understand this fear, especially for people who have never spent much time working with photographs on their computers. The prospect of learning a program like Lightroom CC from the ground up can be especially daunting.

If your photos are important to you, then I want to encourage you to spend time to learn a RAW processing program like Lightroom CC. This software package and others like it are very capable and aren’t too big to learn as long as you are willing to invest a few hours of your precious time.

One of the most useful tools in Lightroom is the highlight slider. You’ll find this slider in the Develop module and it is designed to help recover highlight detail from over-exposed areas in an image. Take a look at this example photograph of boats at a marina (below). I photographed this a couple weeks ago in my hometown of Gig Harbor Washington on a sunny morning.

PushBackHighlights2_1200px

The scene appealed to me because of the calm water that produced fascinating reflections of the boats. The second thing I noticed about this scene was a man eating breakfast on the back of his boat while enjoying the morning sun. Using my Nikon D800 and a Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8, I set the camera for matrix metering and took the shot.

When I returned to my computer and downloaded my images, I saw right away that the white areas of the boats appeared to be blown out. In other words, there was limited detail on the white paint because of the brightness of the direct sun. Since I always shoot my images in RAW format, I knew that I would be able to push back some detail into those bright white areas by moving Lightroom’s highlight slider downwards.

hagen_150805_0050

Here’s the image as I captured it in the Nikon D800. You’ll see lots of regions in the photograph that are over exposed. I’ll use the Highlight slider in Lightroom CC to recover details in those areas.

The highlight slider is a very advanced tool and does an excellent job with recovering delicate highlight detail. In general, you should feel comfortable moving the slider down to the minimum position (-100) without causing too much visual degradation of the picture. In previous versions of Lightroom, you had to be very careful with the highlights slider because you never knew what would happen to those highlight areas. In some cases, the areas we just turn muddy and you would lose texture in the image. With the new highlight slider in Lightroom 5, 6 and CC, you should feel comfortable moving the slider to just about any position from zero to -100 on the slider scale. There are some photos where adjusting the slider to -80 or -90 doesn’t look good, but you’ll be able quickly see where the photo starts to break down and then you can re-adjust the slider appropriately. My general approach is to move the slider to where it recovers all detail, then back it off just a tiny bit to retain the realism in the image.

PushBackHighlights1

For this picture of the boats, I did a few things in order to push detail back into the highlights. The first thing was to move the exposure slider down by -0.30. This reduced the overall brightness of the photograph, including highlights, midtones, and shadows. My next step was to adjust the highlight slider down to the point where I was able to push detail back into the white areas of the boats. In this case it was about -70 on the scale.

My next adjustment was to increase the shadow slider to bring back information in the dark areas of the scene that I lost when moving the exposure down. Finally, I increased clarity and vibrance to add a little bit of punch to the image.

PushBackHighlights3_1800px

When comparing the before and after of the image, the adjustments I made were subtle, yet significant. If I was going to make a print of this image, the unedited version would have been terrible because the bright areas of the scene would have no detail and the image would end up looking flat. By recovering the highlights, I was able to salvage the shot.

Marina panorama

Here’s another shot, a panorama, from the same position. I used the same Lightroom settings as the previous image to recover the highlights.





Review of Scott Kelby’s Lightroom CC Book for Digital Photographers

Posted June 30th, 2015 by   |  Photography, Software  |  Permalink

Lightroom CC for Digital Photographers cover

Like many of you, I’ve been using Adobe Lightroom for years. Since I also teach and write about Lightroom, I’m always excited to learn new hidden features of the program that I’ve never used.  In order to satisfy my desire to learn new things, I sat down last week to delve into Scott Kelby’s new Lightroom Book titled the Lightroom CC Book for Digital Photographers, published by New Riders – Voices That Matter.

Next Book in Series

This is the latest in Scott’s long-running series of Lightroom books that began with Lightroom 1 back in 2007. At 16 chapters and 559 pages, this book is hefty in its weight and its coverage of the topic. It isn’t the type of book you’ll sit down with for one evening. Rather, you’ll want to give yourself ample time to fully digest the plethora of tips, techniques, and methods that Kelby outlines in great detail.

Chapter 10

Book Layout and Design

Every topic in the book is laid out by an easy-to-follow system of steps. Step 1: do this. Step 2: do that. This approach to writing is very helpful for learning and puts all concepts into bite-sized chunks that are easily digestible. Each page is perfectly laid out with the main steps on one side of the page and the corresponding screen shots on the other side. This format makes it easy to read what you should be doing, while simultaneously seeing what you should be doing. This is a great way to learn Lightroom CC and follows the exact same approach I use when teaching the program.

Book layout

The book is laid out with the text description of the step on one side of the page and the corresponding screen-shot on the other side of the page. This makes learning the program much easier.

 

Each chapter ends with a page or two of Kelby’s famous Lightroom Killer Tips. These are quick tips that highlight some of the features of Lightroom in a rapid-fire way that gets right to the point. Be sure to read all of the Killer Tips for hidden gems that you might otherwise miss.

Lightroom Killer Tips

Each chapter of the book ends with a page or two of Kelby’s famous Lightroom Killer Tips.

 

One very nice touch is how the book is designed with the Lightroom module layout in the header. The purpose of the header is to show the reader what part of the program they are currently studying. This simple, but effective technique is extremely helpful to new users of the program who might otherwise be lost in the program. Scott’s design and layout team is very good and I give them major props for incorporating the module headers into the layout of the book.

Lightroom CC Modules

Notice how the Lightroom CC module layout is incorporated into the design of the book. This makes it easy to figure out where you are in the program.

 

Most Useful Chapters

No matter what level of Lightroom user you are, I guarantee you will learn something new in this book. However, I’d like to highlight a couple chapters of the book that I think will be especially useful for readers to fully understand the full capabilities of Lightroom CC/6.

Mobile

As you know, everything is migrating to mobile technology and Lightroom is no different. Lightroom CC has a fairly robust integration with mobile that allows you to incorporate your smart phone or tablet with the desktop application. Kelby’s section on the new Lightroom mobile app is well written and he clearly illustrates how to successfully use Lightroom with your tablet or phone.

Portrait Workflow

The chapter that I think will be most helpful for people is chapter 16 where Scott summarizes his workflow from start to finish. He uses a real-world example of a portrait session to show how to use the powerful features of Lightroom to maximize the efficiency of your photo session. This chapter is a nice way to end the book and synthesize everything Scott wrote about in the previous 15 chapters into one concisely written chapter.

 

Summary

The Adobe Lightroom CC Book for Digital Photographers is well written, easy to understand, and elegantly designed to help you learn Lightroom CC/6. This book rocks. Two thumbs up. Nice work Scott Kelby.

 

Chapter Titles

Chapter 1: Importing, Getting your photos into Lightroom

Chapter 2: Library, How to organize your photos

Chapter 3: Customizing, How to set things up your way

Chapter 4: Editing Essentials, How to develop your photos

Chapter 5: Local Adjustments, How to edit just part of your images

Chapter 6: Special Effects, Making stuff look … well… special

Chapter 7: Lightroom for Mobile, Using the mobile app

Chapter 8: Problem Photos, Fixing common problems

Chapter 9: Exporting Images, Saving JPEGs, TIFFs, and more

Chapter 10: Jumping to Photoshop, How and when to do it

Chapter 11: Book of Love, Creating photo books

Chapter 12: Slideshow, Creating presentations of your work

Chapter 13: The Big Print, Printing your photos

Chapter 14: The Layout, Creating cool layouts for web & print

Chapter 15: DSLR: The Movie, Working with video shot on your DLSR

Chapter 16: My Portrait Workflow, My step-by-step process from the shoot to the final print

Buy your own copy here:

Lightroom CC Book for Digital Photographers.





April 2015 Newsletter is Posted

Posted April 23rd, 2015 by   |  Photography, Software, Workshops  |  Permalink

Our April 2015 Newsletter is posted here: http://visadventures.com/newsletters/2015-04-newsletter/

In this month’s newsletter:

– Greetings
– New Books
– Stuff I Like This Month
– Studio Tips: Seven Things I Learned by Photographing 500 People
– Digital Tidbits: Don’t Forget These 3 Things in the Lightroom Develop Module
– Digital Tidbits: New Software Options in 2015
– Workshop and Business Updates

newslettertilt

Check out our April 2015 newsletter for three big articles, new business updates, and tips related to new products in the photo market. One of the articles covers tools you should be using in Lightroom 5, 6 and CC. We also have an article comparing of all the new photo processing software available in 2015 including Apple Photos, Nikon Capture NXD, Nikon View NX-i, Affinity Photo, Lightroom CC. Our third article is dedicated to what I learned when photographing 500 people for a church directory. I give some great tips for setting up a studio on location, posing, and working with the public.

Read it here: April 2015 Newsletter





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