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Thursday, July 22, 2010

SOOC and After

I have a fear of showing any of my SOOC photographs.  
I'm just as scared of this as I am mosquitoes and detached hair.  
Don't get me started on the whole detached hair thing!  
Scarier than Hannibal Lecter!  
A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti. 

If that census taker has some loose hairs, then I would've lost it!  
You know, like those hairs that are still on your head but aren't attached anymore?  
Just hanging there... a little longer than the rest?! 
Someone get the smelling salts, quick!

I do enjoy a nice chianti though, but what in the world is a fava bean?

Who declared it Bunny-Trail Thursday anyway?

Come back to us Crazy Mama... come back to SOOC.

SOOC = Straight Out Of the Camera

Just wanted to give y'all and idea what's possible with photo editing, specifically, I used Lighroom.

This is our nephew PC.  I think he's pretty stinkin' cute as is!  Those big dark eyes!  But we're gonna make some small changes that will bring out his cuteness even more.  These will be subtle changes.

One of the things I like about Lightroom, is that all the steps to edit are laid out, (on the right hand side) pretty much in the order I'll use them.  I just follow the steps.

Ok, don't judge me too harshly...
First, I do an adjustment to correct the color balance.  This makes the colors "truer."  
{Is that a word?}  
The whites are now whiter and the blues are bluer and...

And I upped the the exposure/brightness?  
{I don't think "upped" is a word either!}

Then I'm gonna bump up the blacks making anything that is black, blacker.  Does that make sense?

And I also kicked up the contrast a bit.
This one is hard to see in this little picture.  But sometimes baby's skin can be kinda ruddy or splotchy.    So at this step, I'm turning down the clarity, creating a "soft focus."  It evens out his skin tone and makes it looks like his skin is peaches-n-cream, a "soft focus."  (Did anyone else smear Vaseline all over their filter way back when?)  It's a great tool for for say... when you in your 40's and say... a Crazy Mama, and need to soften out some of those wrinkles too!  Clarity and soft focus... It's a good thing!
Toward the end, I'm adding a vignette, around the outside.  A vignette is a blurry or color change, darker or lighter, toward the periphery of the pic.  If you look closely, you'll notice that it's now darker around the outside of the photo.  I think it draws your eye to the subject.  I thought the darker one just looked better.  And I don't like the vignette to be too noticeable, again so the subject is still the center of attention.  

On this image, I've sharpened and brightened PC's eyes a bit.  Again, I don't want it to be too noticeable, or he'll start to look like some cyber-droid from the future.  But a little eye editing can go a long way.  I don't do this step on all my photos, usually just my favorites or ones I'm gonna print.  

Did you notice the spot in the background of the previous pictures?  That glare coming off the chair in the upper right corner?  It was kinda bugging me... distracting me from PC's cuteness.  So here I've taken that spot out.  The background is pretty blurry already, so my alteration isn't too noticeable.  I'm getting kinda picky here, but I wanted to show you it's possible to remove spots.    

I think I'm done now.  
And here's a screenshot of the before & after on my Lightroom
I don't think I actually increased the cuteness-factor!  But I do think the image looks better.  So much of it is subjective, and I like it!

If any of y'all have Lightroom and want more tutorials, holler!

Well this is just wrong!
Am I forgiven Auntie Sherri?  I think he looks kinda French, yes?


  1. I made a terrible error several years ago when I went DSLR and got photoshop. I crave Lightroom. I did a 30 day trial with it last year and was salivating. It is so much more useful for folks taking a high volume of pics. So many of the editing stuff is the same. I do those same exact steps in in PS, but oh, how much faster and easier in Lightroom. Someday I will upgrade and kiss PS goodbye except for those times I need it. :)

  2. I think my fear of hair is worse. If a stray hair gets on me...EWWWW....and the absolute WORST is WET hair in the shower or pool or if a hair gets on me and sticks to my leg because I have lotion on.... EEK!!!!!!!!!
    Anyway, when you say you sharpened and brightened his eyes, is there a way to ONLY do the eyes in LR? I know in Elements and CS4 I could lasso them or whatever and just do the eyes.... I mainly use LR now but always wish I knew how to do more with the eyes without switching over. I took an online class about EYES from the Pixel Fairy Princess (She is AWESOME!) and I learned how extremely important the eyes are. If the eyes aren't crystal clear and in focus she said we shouldn't even use the picture no matter how good it is.
    Do tell!

  3. Norah-Loose hair! Don't even get me started. It is SO OOGY! The lotion/wet hair combo? Oh MY! I SO get it's horror!
    And yes, there is an easy quick way to edit JUST eyes, (or face, or back ground, or shoes, or hand, or whatever) and you can adjust anything (color, sharpness, contrast, exposure...) in only the selected area in Lightroom. Email me and I'll show you where/how. But can you show me how to easily transfer pics from LR to PS and back????

  4. Oui, he does look french :o) We shall call him Baby Jacque or Baby Pascal :o) Still adorable


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