Speed Up Photo Viewing in Lightroom with 1:1 Previews

Ask any photographer their least-favorite thing about Adobe Lightroom, and they will most likely tell you it’s the application’s speed. There are a few tricks to help optimize the responsiveness of Lightroom, and this minute-long Lightroom coffee break video focuses on generating 1:1 previews. This is one you may know already, but if you don’t, it can drastically improve your experience when flicking through your catalog. By generating 1:1 previews when you import your photos, Lightroom will do the legwork up-front to create full-resolution previews of your imported images instead of loading them only when you view the image. Lightroom’s
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Harnessing the Power of Auto-Stacking in Lightroom

Auto-stacking in Lightroom can quickly organize a huge set of images in to more manageable ‘stacks’, which are small groups of images grouped according to their capture time. This 6-minute video from photographer Anthony Morganti shows how you can use the feature to speed up your workflow. Auto-stacking is especially useful when you are taking burst images, like Morganti in his wildlife photography example. Normally this will result in a huge grid or filmstrip of near-identical images, which is difficult to deal with. By stacking them, you can reduce the size of the grid and quickly see which images were
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How to Customize the Bokeh in Photos Using a Laser Printer

If you’re into photography, chances are that you’ve seen the tutorials where you are supposed to cut hearts out of paper to get heart-shaped bokeh. I recently decided to try to do this myself. But I soon realized that my scissor skills aren’t anywhere near good enough to make nice looking heart shapes… let alone anything more advanced. This got me thinking of other ways to get custom shaped bokeh. I was standing in the shower a few hours later when it finally hit me: I have a pack of overhead film transparencies lying around in my wardrobe. What if
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4 Common Photo Composition Errors and How to Fix Them

When it comes to composition “rules”, it’s important to understand the concepts so that you have them in the back of your mind while shooting. You’re not going to jail if you break them, but you will likely end up with a better image if you follow them! This 6-minute video from photographer Evan Ranft runs through 4 common composition mistakes that photographers make, and how to avoid them. Ranft has created before and after images to go along with his tips so that you can see the impact that the mistakes have on the image. The 4 mistakes
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Using LAB Color in Photoshop to Add Color and Punch to Photos

The LAB color space is particularly useful for boosting colors and definition in images due to the way it handles colors when compared to RGB and CMYK. Rather than describing how colors should appear on a screen or in print, LAB is designed to approximate human vision. Colin Smith of photoshopCAFE shows in this video how this color space can be utilized in Photoshop to easily improve your images. LAB splits the colors of your image in to 3 channels: Lightness, and A and B for the red-green axis and blue-yellow axis respectively. These channels can be targeted in
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Using LAB Color in Photoshop to Add Color and Punch to Photos

The LAB color space is particularly useful for boosting colors and definition in images due to the way it handles colors when compared to RGB and CMYK. Rather than describing how colors should appear on a screen or in print, LAB is designed to approximate human vision. Colin Smith of photoshopCAFE shows in this video how this color space can be utilized in Photoshop to easily improve your images. LAB splits the colors of your image in to 3 channels: Lightness, and A and B for the red-green axis and blue-yellow axis respectively. These channels can be targeted in
Continue reading "Using LAB Color in Photoshop to Add Color and Punch to Photos"

Using LAB Color in Photoshop to Add Color and Punch to Photos

The LAB color space is particularly useful for boosting colors and definition in images due to the way it handles colors when compared to RGB and CMYK. Rather than describing how colors should appear on a screen or in print, LAB is designed to approximate human vision. Colin Smith of photoshopCAFE shows in this video how this color space can be utilized in Photoshop to easily improve your images. LAB splits the colors of your image in to 3 channels: Lightness, and A and B for the red-green axis and blue-yellow axis respectively. These channels can be targeted in
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5 Dos and Don’ts When Shooting With Models

Photographing a human subject successfully has a lot to do with making a connection, making sure your model is feeling comfortable, and being respectful. In this 10-minute video, photographer Manny Ortiz teams up with his wife Diana (who is a model herself) to talk about the do’s and don’ts of working with models.

The 5 Dos

Here are Manny’s 5 tips on what you should be doing when you’re working with a model: 1. Give Positive Feedback Your attitude is going to be reflected in your model, so remember to give positive feedback even if things aren’t going well for
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High Magnification at a Low Price: How I Built a Super Macro Rig for $230

Last year, I bought a macro lens for the summer. Just a normal one with 1x magnification. I fell into a beautiful and mesmerizing world of minuscule flowers and bugs. I found that in macro photography, you don’t have to travel to beautiful places to take beautiful photos — you can just walk around in your backyard, and discover a whole new world. Also, you don’t have to wake up at 4 AM to catch the golden hour, in macro photography any hour with daylight is golden! This year, however, I decided I wanted to take things to the next
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How to Use a Bathroom as a Softbox For Beautifully Lit Portraits

Need to take portraits and don’t have access to a lighting kit? No worries – this 4-minute video from Jay P. Morgan of The Slanted Lens will show you how you can turn a bathroom – or any room for that matter – into a softbox to create beautiful soft light. As Morgan explains, a softbox is essentially just a way to diffuse light coming through a controlled opening in order to reduce harsh shadowing. A typical softbox would be attached to a powered light source, but a window opening can do the job in a pinch. Morgan sets up
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10 Tips On Using Extreme Wide Angle Lenses for Landscape Photography

As a landscape photographer, I love extreme wide angle lenses. I use my 16-35mm for 90% of my photos and I mostly use it at 16mm. When I give lectures about photography, I often hear people saying they have trouble with using extreme wide angle uses just because they are “so wide”. But these lenses require a different approach than your kit lens to get the most out of them. Here are 10 tips on how to use/start using an extreme wide angle lens for landscape photography:

#1. Observe Through the Camera

When first starting out with wide angle lenses,
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Using Focus Stacking on Landscapes for Extreme Depth of Field

Focus stacking is a technique typically used in macro shots to achieve a large depth of field. It’s a relatively simple concept: take many images focused at slightly different distances and combine the sharp portions to a single image in post. This 6-minute video from landscape photographer Mark Denney will show you how to utilise the technique in landscape photography. Focus stacking in the landscape world is useful for images where there are foreground objects that should be in focus. In Denney’s example image, a railroad track runs from the front of the image right through to the horizon. Even
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How to Master Photoshop’s Pen Tool in Just 30 Minutes

Mastery of the pen tool enables complex vector shapes and selections that can be used for masking or extracting elements from an image. There is a bit of a learning curve to the tool, but this 30-minute video from Unmesh Dinda of PiXimperfect will teach you everything from the fundamentals to real-world use. To fully grasp how the tool works and why it is useful, you need to understand the difference between vector and raster shapes and how the former is constructed. Dinda starts his video by explaining this with visual examples and follows up by showing how the tool
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How to Add Creative Lighting to Plain Backdrops Using a DIY Cucoloris

This short 2-minute video from photographer Svitlana Vronska demonstrates some clever lighting tricks you can use to add some creative flair to your images with an otherwise uninteresting backdrop. The budget setup makes use of lighting gear, some black and white board from a dollar store, and an X-Acto knife to create some interesting shadow patterns.
Svitlana mimics light flowing through blinds by cutting strips out of the board and positioning it in front of her lighting setup, allowing shadows to be cast across her model. This type of device is called a cucoloris. Even if you don’t have a
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8-Bit vs 16-Bit Photos: Here’s What the Difference Is

More bits are better, right? But do you really know the difference between 8-bit and 16-bit images? Photo educator Nathaniel Dodson breaks it down for us in this informative 8-minute video for his channel tutvid. As Dodson explains, a greater bit depth means that you have more room to push and pull colors and tones before you start seeing artifacts like banding in your image. If you are shooting in JPEG you’re limiting your bit depth to 8-bit, which gives you 256 levels of color and tone to play with. RAW images can be anywhere from 12 to 16 bit,
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3 Ways to Add High Quality Film Grain Using Photoshop

Here’s a 10-minute video tutorial by PiXimperfect that teaches how to add artificial film grain to your photos. Learn three ways to give your digital photos a film look. The first is the more complicated of the bunch. First things first, don’t use the standard “Noise > Add Noise” filter that Photoshop provides. This is “the worst way to add noise,” says PiXimperfect. Instead, you’ll be wanting a way to add your film grain with more options than just one intensity slider. Start by creating a new layer, set it to Overlay mode and ensure to check “Fill with Overlay
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How to Easily Turn Your Signature into a Photo Watermark in Photoshop

Here’s a simple way to create a digital watermark using your signature that you can use as a Photoshop brush. This 5-minute video from Colin Smith of photoshopCAFE shows you the steps needed using just a paper, pencil, and a smartphone. To write your signature, Colin recommends using a nice soft pencil to create thick lines with texture. You’ll need a clean white piece of paper to write on, which will make the signature easier to extract in Photoshop. Next, you’ll need to take a photo or scan of the signature. A smartphone works fine for this purpose, but if
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How to Do a Realistic Sky Swap in a Photo Using Photoshop

In this 9-minute video tutorial from Serge Ramelli, learn how to easily swap out an unattractive white sky from a photo for a more dramatic one using Photoshop. Utilizing the power of the multiply blend mode, it’s possible to convincingly change the sky in the shot in minutes. First, open up your alternative sky in a layer on top of your target photo. Position it where you want to swap it in, right on the horizon, and duplicate it. Flip it vertically, and drag it underneath the first sky to create a “perfect mirror” of the sky.
Then merge
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