Monday, January 17, 2011

Green point lighthouse at sunset

An alternative title would be: Learning to use Photoshop CS5. This is the second photo I've processed entirely using the CS5 package. I usually process RAW files in Aperture and with the Nik Software plug-ins. This combination usually works very well and is super fasts for processing "easy" images.

This photo was pretty difficult in terms of contrasts between the foreground and background. I've found that Adobe Camera Raw does a much better job of processing the RAW file to bring out the best of the pixels. However, saving the processed "negative" as a TIFF and bringing that into Aperture is a huge storage hog, tripling the size of the file compared to the RAW one.

So, instead of bringing this image into Aperture, I did the processing in Photoshop. It takes longer, but I'm pretty happy with the results. The key is to make the masks accurately. I've learned a lot about obtaining and refining selections for building masks over the past week as I've been struggling to learn how Photoshop works. It's much more complicated than how I usually process images, but the control of where an adjustment is placed is so much better -IF the mask is made well. I bumped the magnification up to 1200X to make sure I masked the edges accurately. Time consuming, for sure, but the effort was worth it, I think.

I don't expect that I will ever sell this image, but, as a learning exercise, it was time well spent.

Image added 19 Jan 2011:

Green Point Lighthouse at Sunset; seaward side

This is a photo of the lighthouse from the seaward side. That's where the light shines. The street side is blocked off, probably to keep the condominium owners happy.


Anonymous said...

Where is Green point lighthouse I wonder. Very lovely photography. The sky, the silhouette of palm tree, the traffic lights, When is the lighthouse turned on? Thats the one thing that would have made it more interesting and probably impossible.

Andi Wolfe said...

Just posted the seaward side of the lighthouse where the light shines out onto the ocean.