Sit Back And Relax

I have continued to explore the archives after finding so many shots I never edited. This is another one and my jaw honestly hit my desk. It’s a gorgeous image and there was no way I wasn’t going to publish it.

I took this photo when I was in Delray Beach, Florida a few years ago. I was using my Olympus EM1 and the very new Olympus 12-40 2.8 lens.

I know exactly why I didn’t publish this before. There were two people in the image walking across the beach. When I took the picture I didn’t use Photoshop much at all. Lightroom’s healing brush is crap to be nice. So I could not effectively remove them from the image. Now I just go into Photoshop and either use the healing brush or the clone stamp and be done. It took a few seconds for this image and I cleaned up some crap off the beach as well.

I didn’t go too wild editing the image. The image stood up all on its own. Just some gradients in certain places and lots of localized contrast adjustments with dodging and burning. Hit saved and was done.


Site Back And Enjoye

Walk On A Fall Day

It is without fail I end up missing when the leaves are changing colors in fall. I am usually on travel and when I return the last thing I want to do is grab a camera and go shoot. Still, I wanted to get out and capture what I could with what leaves are left.

When I took this picture I was wrapping up for the day. Heading towards my car and just shooting as I went. I was at Brookside Gardens and there were lots of people out to enjoy the park in the later afternoon. I guess they were waiting for the garden light stuff that was set up for the winter draw.

I saw this couple walking and I had my camera hanging off the strap. I grabbed it and took the shot. I always like to capture more and I was lucky I got this one. A child on a bike entered the next frame. So I got lucky with the image and managed to capture it.

Nothing fancy editing here. Just basic curves adjustments along with dodging and burning. I did increase the saturation a bit but otherwise it’s right out of the camera.


Walk On A Fall Day

Restaurant On The Bay

I had to go find a photo I took a few years ago so I was digging through my archives. I found some photos I never published. I have no reason for not editing them other than I guess I didn’t have the skills back then.

My editing from when I started to where I am now is two different worlds. I never used Photoshop, I didn’t have a Wacom tablet, I had no idea what layer masks were, and a whole host of other things. So when I saw these images I just had to edit them and I’m happy I did.

This is obviously the same restaurant on San Diego Bay. I do know where I shot them from and based on the angle I just moved a bit to the right. They felt better in a 16×9 crop to give them a more expansive feeling. To me they feel like different images. While they are the same subject there are different items in them.

I didn’t go wild on the editing because these are micro four-thirds files. One of the reasons I gave up on the format was that the more I pushed the images the more the images degraded. While I have 1″ sensor Sony’s my main work cameras are full frame sensors. While I use the same workflow I don’t dare mask as much in as I do when I have a full frame image to work with.



Restaurant On The BayRestaurant On The Bay

The Reflecting Pool

This is the small pool that is in the Korean Garden area of Meadowlark Gardens. There are a lot of structures there and you can spend a few minutes wandering around and taking photos.

I am not sure I ever took a photo of this pool before. If I didn’t I doubt it was at this angle. I setup my tripod low to get the angle. Once I was happy it was just trying different focal lengths until I got something I liked.

To be honest I am not sure what I did editing as it was a few days ago. I do know I had to fight the brightness of the light to bring things down. I know there was a lot of dodging and burning to get local light adjustments correct. In the end I guess I was happy.


reflecting pool

Boats At Bali Hai

It’s Thanksgiving here in America. It’s normally a period of time that I am on travel using the holiday to get out and go do something. Last year I was in Thailand and this year I am not so why not revisit Thailand.

I took these images all on my Canon S100 as I had it with me. Just took a wander around Bali Hai Pier with camera in hand and just took a bunch of snapshots. I wasn’t in photographer mode. I was just out enjoying the day and getting out and doing something.

The editing is extremely basic. While I had raw files, the S100’s files can’t be pushed that hard so mostly just contrast adjustments and some local dodge and burn.


Thai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai BoatThai Boat

Forest Path

This was taken at Meadowlark Gardens on a path that leads around a small pond. Not sure if it started as an official path but it is now because there are seats there now. It’s a bit muddy after a rain but it’s a quick way to get to other parts of the park.

I setup up the shot because I really liked the light coming in from the side. It gave the leaves a bit of a glow and the way the shadows come off the trees. You also get the impression you are walking in shade and then head out into the brighter sunlight at the end of the tree covered path.

There was some experimenting with this image. It was not done in HDR even though it slightly looks like it. The light was slightly blown out and you could really tell at the end of the path. I put in some layer masks from Intensify CK which I liked but it was still very bright. I brought it into ColorEfex and did my usual hue/saturation adjustments but I wasn’t happy with the blown highlights. Saw a filter called darken contrast and selected it. Started to play with sliders and I got the image exactly where I wanted it in regards to light. Did a quick round of sharpening after bringing the image back into Photoshop and called it done.


Forest Path


The Distant Lighthouse

It seems that with me moving my photo library to it’s new drive I found more images to edit. In fact, I shockingly did a series for later this week. Plus it’s now cold and I miss Thailand where all these images are from.

I shot this from the Bali Hai pier using my Canon S100. I have shot the lighthouse before but much closer not from this angle. I was just standing there and I thought it looked cool with the empty boat slips leading towards the lighthouse in the distance.

When I went to edit this the image was mostly blue. The light was shot because of the storm clouds and it just didn’t look good in color. I manually did the conversion to monochrome and then adjusted sliders. I discovered that it looked better in high key so I used a tone curve adjustment. I added some contrast but the rest was done through dodging and burning. I really had to do a lot of work on the lighthouse to get it to stand out. The only masking I did was in the sky to get the grain out from the small sensor on the S100.


Bali Hai Lighthouse

It’s Monday

I found this image while I was doing some catalogue moving and cleanup. I was moving my stuff to a new 8tb drive and was dumping memory cards to make sure I got everything and I saw the cat and figured why not. Would make a perfect Monday image.

The cat in question is from Thailand. Stray dogs and cats are very common. You get used to seeing them around. The cats seem to fare better than the dogs in regards to health but cats are far more stealthy than dogs so they stay off the streets and in their little hidey holes.

This cat was sunning itself on the wall of the parking garage. I was getting on my bike and saw the cat staring at me. Since it didn’t take off I assumed it was somewhat used to humans. I got my camera ready and took a few snaps. Jumped on my bike and then rode off. The cat never moved. I guess the sun was more important than me.

Nothing fancy here on the edit. The square crop seemed to fit it better and remove some extra stuff. I do admit to bumping the color in the eyes. The rest was dodging and burning to get the colors to pop in the fur and give some separation.


Cat sunning itself

Dawn Over The Rolling Hills

Returning to Sharpsburg, Maryland for this dawn photo shot at the Antietam National Battlefield Park.

I have been relying heavy on the dawn shots because they are extremely rare for me. I’m more of an evening photographer versus a morning one. If I have a choice of sleeping in or going out for a sunrise shoot I can guarantee sleeping will win. So it’s a bit of a treat for me to edit these.

This is a HDR photo but I went for a dreamy effect. It just felt better that way. Normally I am all about crisp edges and cranking sharpness to 11 but this time I left things slightly hazy. It gives the photo that touch of waking up where you still aren’t sure if you are still in a dream. I did a bit of masking to punch the sky colors a bit and I dodged the grass to bring out more of it to give you some idea of the ground rolling.


Dawn Over The Hills

Fence In The Woods

There are parts of Meadowlark Gardens that are fenced off to prevent people from walking in them. When I saw the light and all the texture on this portion I figured why not take a picture.

Interestly enough I did this image in monochrome. I wasn’t happy with it. Normally I use monochrome to bring out textures but it just lost something in the conversion. I even did the conversion two different ways and masked in bits and still didn’t like it so I just scrapped it after saving copies.

One I settled on color it the image just seemed to do what I wanted. I did mask in a bit from Intensify CK to bring out the wood textures. I left the leaves and stuff alone since it wasn’t the focal point in the image. Once I was happy I called it done.


Fence In Woods