One thing that I think is a great misnomer among photographers just starting out, is that those amazing shots they see on the uber-talented really well known photographer’s blogs come out of the camera looking like that.
While yes, the really talented folks can nail exposure shot after shot after shot, the amazing clarity, contrast and sharpness often has just as much to do with post-processing (work in Lightroom and Photoshop) as it does with the original digital image.
And for those photogs who shoot in RAW (as many pros do- not a value judgement here! just saying that many do, ok? no arguments, please) they pretty much have to process their images otherwise they are left looking muddy. I have talked before on this blog about the ‘grey film’ that appears to coat each digital image that comes from the camera, and how it’s necessary to rid oneself of the film lest one have images that all look like they are suffering from a bad hangover.
Before my new lover (Lightroom2) was introduced into my life, I was pretty much wholeheartedly against processing images. I felt like it was cheating, and in a way, I still believe that. Although now that Lightroom has blown my brain wide open, I really don’t care if it’s cheating or not.
I do it, my pet photog friends do it, wedding photographers do it, we all do it. And the really good ones that want you to believe that they are just amazing photographers and that their shots are born looking phenomenal, yet give half-assed answers to questions about processing? Well, they’re full of something my dog eliminates every day.
Want proof? Here it is:
I forgot to mention above that the shot was taken with the 24-70mm f/2.8L lens, which, sadly for me, is a fairly soft copy (and getting softer over time). I guess $1300 doesn’t get you very much these days.
Now, not everyone may like this processing technique in terms of looks, but it’s pretty hard to argue that there isn’t a big difference between the before and after.
If you are a photographer just starting out, and you are hard on yourself believing that the pros have some secret magical formula that you don’t and never will, just stop it right now. Those who have images with amazing clarity and sharpness and contrast aren’t any better, they just have more tricks up their sleeve.
I just decided to come out with my naked RAW truth and reveal my own.
Comments, criticism, linkbacks welcome! What do YOU think about processing??