Array (  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 79685 [post_author] => 47256 [post_date] => 2017-07-12 15:14:16 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-12 19:14:16 [post_content] => Twenty-one-year-old Brazilian artist, Marina Amaral, has used her talent to bring the past back to life, transforming emotive and momentous black-and-white photos into color. With enormous hours of tender, love, and care, Amaral has used her post-processing skills to transform images of historic figures like Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy and events like World War II and Hiroshima, somehow feel palpable.[caption id="attachment_79691" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Lee Harvey Oswald Arrested.Image via Marina Amaral[/caption][caption id="attachment_79694" align="alignnone" width="750"] Senator John F. Kennedy And Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy On Their Wedding Day. September 12, 1953. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption]Marina familiarized herself with Photoshop around the age of 10. Back in 2015, Amaral came across an online history forum containing colorized photos of World War II.[caption id="attachment_79693" align="alignnone" width="1000"] Medics From The US 5th And 6th Engineer Special Brigade (ESB) Help Wounded Soldiers On Omaha Beach. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption][caption id="attachment_79696" align="alignnone" width="736"] Ethnic German Refugees Huddling In Blankets - The Only Survivors Of An Original 150 Polish People Who Walked From Lodz In Poland To Berlin Hoping To Find Food And Shelter. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption]“I was surfing the internet when I stumbled upon a few colorizations of photos of World War II in a forum. I remember I was surprised to learn that it was possible to achieve a realistic result with this technique, because every time I tried to do it before, the colors were so weird and the result was anything close to the level of quality that I would like to present in my work,” Marina said. “When I realized it was possible to create something better than what I was doing before, I began to practice every day. That's what I've been doing since then.”[caption id="attachment_79697" align="alignnone" width="750"] Hiroshima after bombing. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption]Enamored with the wonders of her new talent, Marina has since turned her hobby into a career, coloring more than 200 significant images for commission.[caption id="attachment_79699" align="alignnone" width="750"] Thomas Edison Relaxing On A "Vagabonds" Camping Trip, 1921. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption][caption id="attachment_79700" align="alignnone" width="750"] A 1st Royal Ulster Rifles, 6th Airborne Division (UK) Sniper, On Patrol In The Ardennes, Wearing A Snow Camouflage Suit, 14 January 1945. Image via Marina Amaral.[/caption]As Marina states, the “time-consuming process” for each photo usually requires more than a month of painstaking research. Amaral carefully sources her material from online library archives such as the Library of Congress, the US National Archives, and the British Library. Next, Amaral contacts top historians and other experts to identify the correct colors of objects and scenery.The process doesn’t end there. To perfect her technique, Amaral prefers to reference modern photographs of the locations at the same time of day. In addition, Amara studies the colors of individuals’ faces in real life to understand exactly how the light meets skin. “I try to be as accurate as possible with the colors, because I’m aware that this is history,” as said to WIRED. “It’s not my job to modify it and make it look the way I want it to look.”Marina’s favorite photo she’s worked on is a series of mugshots from a girl that was murdered in Auschwitz. “I wanted to give her to chance to "say" her name, to show her face and to tell her story. I think I managed to achieve my goal and that makes me feel very proud,” she said.[caption id="attachment_79703" align="aligncenter" width="613"] 14-year-old Polish girl, Czeslawa Kwoka, murdered in Auschwitz.I mage via Marina Amaral.[/caption]Check more of Amaral's work here.[Featured image via Marina Amaral] [post_title] => Photo Colorization Wizard Brings New Life to Iconic Black and White Images [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => photo-colorization-wizard-brings-new-life-to-iconic-black-and-white-images [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-07-12 15:14:16 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-07-12 19:14:16 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=79685 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 75609 [post_author] => 47235 [post_date] => 2017-02-08 15:39:03 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-02-08 20:39:03 [post_content] => Google Brain, the company's deep learning research center, just unveiled a major breakthrough in sharpening pixelated images. What's that, you ask? Well, think of it as the "zoom and enhance" technique you've seen in so many movies. A security camera picks up a blurry image and some computer genius clears it up. Google developed it, sort of, and called it "pixel recursive super resolution."Google basically tried to enlarge low resolution photographs to recover a plausible high resolution version of it. But because the input image does't really contain that much information, there are usually a lot of plausible high resolution images.
A super resolution model must account for the complex variations of objects, viewpoints, illumination, and occlusions, especially as the zoom factor increases. Realistic, high resolution images are only possible when hard decisions are made about the type of textures, shapes, and patterns present at different parts of an image. Google just had to figure out a way how to make those decisions, and neural networks were their way to go.[caption id="attachment_75636" align="aligncenter" width="558"] Google's new upscaling method (NN) versus the previously existing one (Bicubic).[/caption]If you feel like diving into every little detail of this reasearch: by all means. But thanks to some talented science translators at Ars Technica, we're able to give you a comprehensible summary.First, Google had a conditioning network map 8×8 source images against other high resolution images. It downsized them to 8×8, and tried to make a match. Then, Google had a prior network use an implementation of PixelCNN, to add realistic high resolution details to the 8×8 source image. The prior network therefore contained a lot of information of a large number of real high-res images, and therefore was able to add new pixels to the image it wanted to "blow up," based on what it "knows" about that type of image.Still with us? Here's an example by Ars Technica:
If there's a brown pixel towards the top of the image, the prior network might identify that as an eyebrow: so, when the image is scaled up, it might fill in the gaps with an eyebrow-shaped collection of brown pixels. Not every image eventually resembled the actual ground image, but they did look like realistic images, and that is the actual breakthrough. Researchers showed a test panel enlarged images versus real images and they asked them which one they thought had not been artificially altered. Ten percent guessed it wrong when comparing pictures of human beings, while 28 percent got it wrong when comparing pictures of bedrooms. To put that in perspective: 50 percent would be perfect, but... up until now, existing upscaling techniques (bicubic scaling) had zero percent fooled.[caption id="attachment_75628" align="aligncenter" width="489"] The best and worst images in the panel study. Fractions below the images denote how many times a person choose that image over the ground truth.[/caption][via Ars Technica] [post_title] => Google Brain Develops Revolutionary Image Enhancing Software [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => google-brain-develops-revolutionary-image-enhancing-software [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-02-08 15:39:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-02-08 20:39:03 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=75609 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 69261 [post_author] => 30241 [post_date] => 2016-08-04 13:13:07 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-08-04 17:13:07 [post_content] => Retoucher Daniel Hagar thinks that there is a problem with a widely used retouching technique, and he wants to prove it. When you have already peaked into the field of advanced retouching, especially beauty and portrait retouching, I do not have to tell you that dodge and burn is pretty much the most powerful retouching technique you can learn.However, people always try to take shortcuts or make their lives easier. I guess that is human nature.One technique which is supposed to help you with the dodging and burning is the usage of help layers... but Daniel warns, beware! You can find several actions with help layers and without proper guidance, they might not even be helpful.
In my 1:1 classes, I found that the channel mixer used as a help layer for the dodge and burn technique is one thing that keeps people from achieving those perfect beauty results without knowing it is not the lack of practice, but the wrong visual aid layer they are using. What to expect from a help layer for dodging and burning:
How The Channel Mixer Is Typically Used:In case you are using the channel mixer adjustment layer as a help layer for dodging and burning, chances are, you were taught to set it to monochrome, increase the blue channel and then decrease the red channel.The Channel Mixer Adjustment layer used as above does not convert colors as we perceive them when messing with the color channels, and obviously makes red skin tones darker and work underneath it. We need more precision when we want help with making decisions on what to brighten and what to darken within the image. Set the Channel Mixer Adjustment layer to the color blending mode and if you need contrast, add a curves layer on top.For a full breakdown of the techniques that Daniel is explaining, head over to his extremely detailed blog post. Seriously. Retouchers, take a listen. [post_title] => Breaking Bad Retouching Habits: Why You Should Not Use the Channel Mixer [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => breaking-bad-retouching-habits-why-you-should-not-use-the-channel-mixer [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-08-04 13:13:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-08-04 17:13:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=69261 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 68896 [post_author] => 47235 [post_date] => 2016-07-25 16:20:14 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-07-25 20:20:14 [post_content] => Retouching pictures is about as old as photography itself. Especially when it comes to sectors like the fashion photography industry, it's common knowledge that an image travels a long, edited road between being shot and being published. But one anonymous Photoshopper's confession to Refinery29 about what happens behind the scenes of a Victoria's Secret photo shoot, is eye opening nevertheless.Sarah (not her real name) shares her story because she wants us to understand just how unreal the bodies we see are, from head to toe, but at the same time wants us to understand our own role in propagating these images. “As a society, we're the ones who choose this.”[caption id="attachment_68899" align="alignnone" width="851"] © Victoria's Secret[/caption]The first of Sarah's nine-point-confession, is that retouching has been around much longer than Photoshop has existed. It started out not being about creating a false image, but showing you the clearest possible version. "But at some point, someone realized: You can manipulate the background, so why not manipulate the body? And then this thing just spiraled out of control.”"Body fixing" also starts even before the first picture is taken. Sarah mentions things like hair extensions and "chicken cutlets" and other body shaping pads, and adds that it's routine practice. "That’s why we’re used to seeing anti-gravity breasts everywhere, and why a swimsuit will never look the same on our bodies as it does on the model’s body. Because it’s barely her body anymore."Next comes the digital alteration. Sarah was asked anything from nipple erasing to more subtle corrections, like making sure armpits are no longer gray. Another standard practice is “adding meat on their bones,” which made Sarah wonder why brands don't just take "curvier" models. Because society doesn't want that. "If consumers responded positively with their dollars to less conventionally shaped models, brands would use them more in imagery."
- Discard color information ( lets you focus on luminosity only. Less hard on your eyes over time)
- Add contrast to make flaws more visible
- Stay true to the original color perception
“The reason people retouch bodies is because they're just trying to sell you something. Brands reflect the world as we’d like to see it, in order to sell [...]. That’s why retouching alters everything from waist size to body hair.” Aerie is the brightest exception to this rule, launching their Aerie Real campaign in 2014, announcing they would use a broader range of model sizes, and leave all their photos absolutely un-retouched. Aerie went big, but Sarah explains it wasn’t done out of the kindness of their hearts. “They didn’t do it to make people feel good. They did it because they wanted to see if it would sell.”[caption id="attachment_68900" align="alignnone" width="851"] © Victoria's Secret[/caption]Sarah now has a full-time job in another part of the industry. She knew that what she was doing, was wrong, and while she still does some freelance retouching, she turns down a lot, depending on what they ask of her. She sees how minds are beginning to change, but the bigger battle - changing consumer hearts and minds - is still ahead. [post_title] => Photoshopper Reveals Just How Unreal Victoria's Secret Bodies Really Are [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => photoshopper-reveals-just-how-unreal-victorias-secret-bodies-really-are [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-07-25 16:20:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-07-25 20:20:14 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=68896 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 66439 [post_author] => 30241 [post_date] => 2016-05-11 11:00:24 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-05-11 15:00:24 [post_content] =>
Earlier today, Corel announced AfterShot Pro 3, a program that looks like a legitimate threat to Adobe Lightroom's dominance. It has many of the same features, some even more robust than that of Adobe's, and has a proprietary raw algorithm unique to Corel products.
Though AfterShot Pro 3 is a lot more than the sum of its parts, and we are presently conducting a full review of the software, we did want to take a look specifically at that unique raw editor. If you've been a reader of Resource, you'll recognize that we do this every time we catch wind of a new raw algorithm, because there are so very few out there and the way they treat the same file is fascinating to look at. Our last test pitted Affinity Photo against Adobe Camera Raw (ACR), and we found Affinity to be superior in it's core algorithm.
To help us really evaluate the software, we once again enlisted the help of one of the best retouchers in the world, Pratik Naik of Solstice Retouch. Pratik is incredibly knowledgeable on the subject of RAW processing software and understands not only what should be happening, but why something is or isn't following along that route.
This is not Resource's full review of AfterShot Pro 3, but a retoucher's perspective on the core RAW algorithms. The full review is still in progress.
Below is straight from the expert himself, Pratik Naik. Aside from images that specifically state otherwise, each of the photos below was not adjusted in any way, other than to be opened in a different RAW processor.
I was excited to play with Corel AfterShot Pro 3 because the root of my digital transition into art started with Corel programs like Painter. Now within the photography world, the ability to play with various raw converters allows me to explore more tools that may prove helpful. Jumping in, the first element was the layout. A positive of the program is how easy it is to navigate and understand. If you're familiar with any other raw processor, it will all make sense to you. A nice clean U.I. isn't enough to win me over, though. Let's see what's under the hood and how it runs!Putting it through its paces, I soon learned a couple of fundamental points.As you can see, and not shockingly, ACR was awful in color rendition. Corel's AfterShot was much better and coming closer to Capture One[caption id="attachment_66459" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Capture One[/caption][caption id="attachment_66451" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Adobe Camera Raw[/caption][caption id="attachment_66444" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption]
In direct comparison to Capture One, although close, Capture One still is the king of the hill as far as the colors are rendered and interpreted through their program. Subtleties especially, the accuracy of skin tones, shades of products and environments became the difference. Also, the sharpness at 100% was really key. On the surface, it was close, but where it matters, there was a big difference.Side by side, it wasn't overwhelmingly apparent, but brought in and overlaid, I noticed the immediate difference. For instance, in our couple shot, take a look at the amount of colors within the wood, and vibrancy along with the vivid clarity and sharpness in every detail.[caption id="attachment_66449" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through ACR[/caption][caption id="attachment_66442" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption][caption id="attachment_66457" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Capture One[/caption]
Even within areas like the sweaters worn by the models, you notice natural color variations within each thread of fabric. Corel's AfterShot is a lot muddier. There is distinct mid-tone separation and complexity with colors that Corel's AfterShot doesn't have.
That lead to more clues about what's to come. The positives almost end there, as the color and exposure tools really had no substance in comparison to Capture One or even Camera Raw. For me, among the three, it fell into last place here. For instance, the “Color Correction” tool is limited and can't dial a specific range of colors. You can only select a color and then adjust sliders. But if you want a particular range of that tone, you can't modify it like Capture One can in the “Color Editor.” When you do modify a tone, if it's on the border of any other color, the posterization is very clear and unflattering. Also the sliders are abrasive and isn't very cautious, so you have to use it very gently.[caption id="attachment_66453" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through ACR[/caption][caption id="attachment_66445" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption][caption id="attachment_66461" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Capture One[/caption]The same goes for other tools like "Fill Light" which muddies up tones and doesn't have an intelligent algorithm in lifting shadows vs mid-tones. It lifts them all up in a linear fashion by how it flattens out the image.[caption id="attachment_66447" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, "Fill Light" Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption]It continues with the “Exposure Adjustment.” When bringing down the exposure, it doesn't know how to handle the tonality shift.[caption id="attachment_66441" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Exposure Adjustment Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption]Overall, here are some succinct takeaways from what I learned working with Corel's AfterShot Pro 3.Positives:
- Export times are blazingly fast
- Great layout, easy to use, and the platform is inviting
- Better than Adobe Camera Raw in initial color
[caption id="attachment_66454" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through ACR[/caption][caption id="attachment_66446" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption][caption id="attachment_66462" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Capture One[/caption]
- The overall color and sharpness rendition of images is lacking
- The adjustment tools really don't help the image if you want to do any major adjustments
There are a few important notes to keep in mind when considering the information Pratik presented here. Firstly, this is a batch editor designed for working with a large number of files quickly and easily. Though you might find yourself processing images with extreme detail like Pratik does, it's not necessarily what the product was actually designed to do.
Specifically on Pratik's notes about sharpness, Corel did mention that they believe Adobe Lightroom (and more specifically ACR) artificially sharpens images right out of the gate to give your photos the appearance that they are better when processed through Adobe than through a rival software, and that Corel specifically did not want to do that with their platform. Pratik did indeed notice a lack of sharpness, and that can be added later with Corel's sharpening tools.[caption id="attachment_66452" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, ACR[/caption][caption id="attachment_66448" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through AfterShot Pro 3[/caption][caption id="attachment_66460" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by John Schell, Processed Through Capture One[/caption]
What can't be fixed as easily are the tonality and color rendition issues that Pratik noticed once you start trying to adjust an image. In some ways AfterShot is better than Adobe, but in most ways they both failed to match Capture One. However, there is one super important thing to keep in mind:
Corel isn't targeting Capture One users, it's targeting Lightroom users. Capture One is a really amazing software, but its user base is not the same as most who use Lightroom. Corel's software competes well with Lightroom, and AfterShot is 1/4 the price of Capture One. Right now, Lightroom's achilles heel is its speed, and if Corel can compete well there (and they claim they're 4x faster), then we really do have an interesting time ahead.
So given the comparison images above... how do you think AfterShot Pro 3 fared against the two biggest competitors? Let us know in the comments below. [post_title] => We Compare Corel's AfterShot Pro 3 RAW Algorithm to Adobe and Capture One [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => we-compare-corels-aftershot-pro-3-raw-algorithm-to-adobe-and-capture-one [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-05-11 09:12:53 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-05-11 13:12:53 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=66439 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 13 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 66111 [post_author] => 47234 [post_date] => 2016-04-28 12:27:18 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-04-28 16:27:18 [post_content] =>
Advertising photography has always presented the viewer with a fantasy, a flawless, idealised framing of a product as it might appear at its most desirable, carefully posed and painstakingly lit. To some this is art, to others a willful, even damaging distortion. But how unpolished should advertising and fashion really be, and how much of a role does Photoshop actually play?
In recent years, retouching as a practice has found itself under increased scrutiny for a number of high profile errors, providing ever more regular content to a number of (frankly hilarious) websites that exist to shine an unforgiving light on the oversights of the terminally overworked, or catastrophically underskilled retoucher. Most of these mistakes are harmless, a missing leg or a spooky floating hand, remnant of a subject otherwise erased.
The examples that have drawn the most ire, and are responsible for ‘Photoshopping‘ becoming a source of such controversy, are frequently cases of extreme body modification, taking below just one of countless examples from 2015 in which singer Zendaya called out some bizarre liberties taken with the Liquify Tool: https://www.instagram.com/p/9FV2sdJmOk/The overwhelming consensus of opinion in the comments is ‘this looked a lot better before’, and they’re absolutely right of course. Quite apart from the skin tones being way too hot, the figure reshaping has taken impetuous leave of all artistic and anatomical sensibility.Knowing as a professional not to haphazardly slim down a woman for no reason goes hand in hand in this case with another great rule of thumb; don’t drastically alter the subject of a portrait (particularly not a celebrity). If someone removed something as characteristically recognisable as Robert DeNiro’s mole they’d be roundly mocked, yet we’ve reached a point where with alarming frequency female celebrities are reshaped and moulded into an arbitrary ideal.Already in 2016, actor and writer Lena Dunham has publicly asked magazines to leave her body shape alone; when asked why, “…maybe it was the fact that I no longer understand what my own thighs look like.”In that particular instance, Dunham issued an apology when it became clear that the magazine itself wasn’t responsible, the edits had taken place somewhere between the shoot and the magazine buying the shots, presumably by, or at the behest of someone who thought it was a perfectly normal thing to do.Case after case such as this has led to calls to ban, or like France, regulate the use of Photoshopin fashion and advertising. It shouldn’t have come to this.The problem with ‘banning Photoshop’ is that what we do, when applied with competence and professionalism, at its best helps to create beauty and artistry, and at even its most functional is often a necessary step in remedying common issues between opening the shutter and sending a file to print.
A photograph is not a perfect record of how an object looked at that moment, it’s simply a record of how light from that object was perceived and captured through an artificial lens. One of the problems we face when preparing photography for print, is that a photograph is not a perfect record of how an object looked at that moment, it’s simply a record of how light from that object was perceived and captured through an artificial lens.The details preserved in medium or large format, particularly in terms of contrast and sharpness, are far in excess of the detail perceived directly by the human eye. This is well demonstrated in a recent social media post by my good friend and Retouching Academy chief extraordinaire Julia Kuzmenko McKim:https://www.instagram.com/p/BEkzsXJyGE6/That’s at just 50% zoom, and after personally handling countless commercial images over a decade I can say with certainty that there are details in everything, including human skin, shot with good glass and sharpened for print, that rarely look great.This is an effect exaggeratedly demonstrated when you see how focus stacked macro photography of a beautifully colored beetle produces a fascinatingly detailed image.It isn’t that the richly enhanced, pin-sharp topography of the human skin is unpleasant to look at that provides us with a problem; in fact anyone who works regularly with portraits shot with high end lenses can tell you it’s distractingly interesting. Every pore, facial hair and grain of make-up is brought into stark relief, and as it is with the beetle it’s easy to marvel at those details. Nature up close is a beautiful and fascinating thing, as an artist, as a human being.This of course, is not what advertisers selling a lipstick shade want you to be studying as you stand by a six feet high poster at the bus shelter. They want their product to be seen, framed in the most beautiful way possible, without distractions. And that’s a fair thing to want.https://www.instagram.com/p/BC8IW0wQezK/
Post-production is only a very small part of this whole process, and a particularly vital one with time constraints placed on photographers and their teams; in most cases it simply isn’t feasible to reposition every creased collar, or errant strand of hair before each one of hundreds, if not thousands of exposures across several looks. By the time the perfect pose happens, there has likely been a lot of movement to hamper the work of the stylist and makeup artist, making our role a crucial one.
There will be a bunched up suit jacket, a creased dress or an awkwardly posed foot. Altering these in post-production just gives us more flexibility in creating a beautiful shot to best show off a product. There’s an element of fantasy and that’s no bad thing, fashion and advertising photography is unequivocally an art form, and has been so long before post-production software existed. https://www.instagram.com/p/BB2R09xwezm/
None of this is to say that we don’t have a responsibility, there is a larger social issue at play, and one which we should be mindful of.
It is ‘extreme’ retouching, particularly abuse of the Liquify Tool and ‘de-ageing’ that draws media and social media criticism, and rightly so. Severe body reshaping without artistic merit is a facile and amateurish approach, an approach which most professional retouchers learn to recoil from along with the haphazard blurring of skin.
Working freelance in this industry has given me the privilege of working both on-site and remotely for some of the big names in advertising on a regular basis, and believe me when I say that ‘overdoing it’ is not what they’re interested in, certainly not in light of recent backlash.
Restraint in post-production isn’t just an admirable artistic choice anymore; it has become lauded and desirable. Even if you have no interest in the social issue, your business brain needs to be telling you to be on the right side of the trend, and that trend is toward a more natural, more authentic output.
I worked on a short educational video for Dove’s ‘Self-Esteem Project’ in London in 2015, a small project that highlighted the excesses of retouching in Photoshop in a conspicuous minority of cases, and although it was great fun to go completely overboard, I stand by its message.
It is our job as retouchers to enhance and enrich a photograph, never to destroy the integrity of its subject.
This article originally appeared on Retouching Academy, and was republished with permission. [post_title] => The Retouching Controversy: How We Need to Move Forward [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-retouching-controversy-how-we-need-to-move-forward [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-04-28 12:27:18 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-04-28 16:27:18 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=66111 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 64667 [post_author] => 47207 [post_date] => 2016-03-28 12:53:17 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-03-28 16:53:17 [post_content] => A few months ago I was given the opportunity to review the 32” NEC 4k Monitor which was nothing short of amazing. To follow up, the team at NEC sent me the 27” EA275UHD to get my opinions on it as well. Thankfully, the 27” “Little Brother” didn’t disappoint! Coming in at a price point of $849.00 for the 27" Monitor with Calibration Kit, it's the winning combination for the visual artist looking for insane resolution at an affordable price! The 32” version was clearly targeted at major, high-end coloring/editing houses that provide precise color accuracy and management, but if you don’t need that final top 1% in the performance department, you can save thousands of dollars by choosing the EA-series 27”. The color accuracy, quality, and contrast are more than acceptable for business and professional use. So where does the 27” differ from the 32”? Well, it's smaller to start. It weighs much less and occupies a much smaller footprint than it’s big brother, making it easier to take with you should you want to maneuver the display. The EA275UHD is a scaled down unit ready to deliver exactly what you need. A single DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort connection is available along with a scaled down 2 port USB3 hub, and built in Audio and Control Sync connections provide more than enough options for a standard visual professional like myself! As with the 32”, the 27” upscaling at 1080p using the HDMI connection left a little to be desired, so I’d highly recommend using the DisplayPort adapter to give you the full 4k treatment! However, with the 27” model, older devices (such as my 2012 MacBook Pro) don't default to 4K resolution when using a DisplayPort connection. In fact, 4K is hidden! This appears to be a known issue on Apple’s end and NEC is working on fixing it. So when I first connected the monitor with the DisplayPort adapter, it was still displaying at 1080p, even when I selected the scaled options. The solution is to hold the OPTION key on a Mac while selecting any of the scaled options, then the full gamut of display modes will be available to you. Strange, I know, but it works, and this is my ONLY negative comment towards this device whatsoever! If you’re using an older computer like me, you’ll have to do some trickery to enable the full resolution capabilities of the EA275UHD. But otherwise, it operates like a dream! I’ve tested this on a few different computers (old to new, Windows and Mac) and the newer devices run perfectly plug and play, but the older ones will require you to enable the hidden options.The first thing you should do after connecting the monitor is run the SpectraView Calibration (Which is included in the $849 price) to get the most out of your display. I ran several tests using the SpectraView, the Spyder Calibration, and a Color Monkey and the results from the SpectraView are pretty spectacular.While it doesn’t have the color precision that the PA 32” has, the EA 27” is pretty amazing in its own right! The included stand provides nearly 360 degrees of swivel, 5” of height adjustment, 25 degrees of tilt, and the ability to rotate the monitor into “portrait mode,” with every movement feeling extremely smooth and precise.The EA Series monitors all have very similar On Screen Display menus with a plethora of options and controls very neatly organized for your use, located and activated from the bottom right corner of the screen. If you’ve ever used an NEC monitor, the layout and options will hold no surprises.Technical Specifications
|Panel Type & Backlight||AH-IPS / W-LED, edge array|
|Screen Size & Aspect Ratio||27in / 16:9|
|Max Resolution & Refresh||3840x2160 @ 60Hz|
|Native Color Depth & Gamut||10-bit / sRGB|
|Response Time (GTG)||6ms|
|Speakers||2 x 1w|
|Video Inputs||1 x DisplayPort 1.2, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x DVI|
|Audio||3.5mm stereo input, 3.5mm headphone output|
|USB||v3.0 - 1 x up, 2 x down, v2.0 - 1 x down|
|Power Consumption||49w typical, .37w standby|
|Panel Dimensions WxHxD w/base||25.2 x 16.5-21.6 x 9.1in 639 x 418-548 x 230mm|
|Panel Thickness||2.9in / 74mm|
|Bezel Width||.8in / 20mm|
|Weight||20.1lbs / 9.1kg|
- Great price ($949 including calibration kit)
- Large wide screen monitor with tons of workspace
- Good color accuracy
- Consistent 4k resolution
- Lightweight and solid build/durability
After months of heavy and daily use I can honestly say that this is a fantastic investment for anyone looking to make the leap from 1080p to the 4k realm! In fact, I actually ended up ordering an EA275UHD for myself! The only drawback with this monitor, and I mean ONLY, is the manual settings you’ll have to fiddle with if you're using an older computer. Even then, it’s barely noticeable.We give the NEC MultiSync EA275UHD Monitor an 86% for its great build quality, durability, connections, price, and resolution, with the ONLY caveat being its quirkiness when connected to older computers. [post_title] => Review: The 27-inch NEC EA275UHD 4K Monitor is Beautiful [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => review-the-27-inch-nec-ea275uhd-4k-monitor-is-beautiful [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-04-01 12:10:33 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-04-01 16:10:33 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=64667 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 1 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 64336 [post_author] => 30241 [post_date] => 2016-03-15 09:32:55 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-03-15 13:32:55 [post_content] => Affinity Photo, the app that is in many ways just as powerful as Adobe, has posed a minor threat to Photoshop since its release on Mac last year. Minor, only because it's not a system available across the board to everyone who has wanted to use it or needs to. Soon, that changes. Today Affinity announced they are building their software for Windows computers, a move that could move them from "possible threat" to "viable threat" in the eyes of Adobe. It's also the first time a major competitor will be available across both platforms, opening the possibilities for Affinity's growth in the creative community.
- Color accuracy — good, but not amazing as compared to the PA Series monitors.
- Input lag — while not nearly as noticeable as the 32”, with an older device that’s not designed for native 4k output you will notice a small delay in response time. On newer devices this is a null point.
- 4K with older computers — as mentioned above, 4k resolutions are not available on older computers without accessing the hidden menus via keyboard shortcuts. While this is a minor annoyance, the real problem is with the refresh rate. On older computers you’re limited to 30Hz when you should be getting 70Hz standard. On newer computers, again, this is not an issue at all.
The Affinity apps—which currently include Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo—have enjoyed tremendous success over the last 12 months with both apps regularly charting in the top 10 of the Mac App Store and gaining 1,000s of 5 star reviews from users. They have also received some serious recognition from Apple themselves having won a Design Award in July, and Affinity Photo being chosen as their best app of 2015 in December last year. Affinity apps for Windows will have exactly the same feature set as the Mac apps that have set the creative world alight, as well as sharing the same single file format that has become a core feature of the Affinity suite. Coming to Windows makes the Affinity range ideal for inter-agency collaborations, cross-platform creative workflows, and for a huge number of design studios, photographers and freelancers who have a PC based set-up. As well as feature parity, Serif also promises to match the business model of the Mac versions with a purchase price of $49.99 / €49.99 / £39.99 with no subscription.You can sign up for the free beta of Affinity for Windows here: affinity.serif.com/windows [post_title] => Serif Affinity Photo and Designer are Coming to Windows [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => serif-affinity-photo-and-designer-are-coming-to-windows [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-03-15 09:32:55 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-03-15 13:32:55 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=64336 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 63825 [post_author] => 47213 [post_date] => 2016-02-23 12:44:46 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-02-23 17:44:46 [post_content] => Announced this morning, Alien Skin Software has started their winter sale, offering 30% off of all their products for a limited time. As I've said before, Alien Skin Exposure X is the only plugin I use within Adobe Photoshop, and appreciate it for its feature heavy toning options, while allowing easy customization. Alongside my uses, Alien Skin has been used and beloved by some of the photography industry's top photographers, including Sue Bryce and Lara Jade.Though Alien Skin Exposure X isn't the only software on sale right now. Blow Up 3, Eye Candy 7, and Snap Art 4 are all also on sale, allowing you to try a lot of really interesting and innovative tools on the cheap. Below is a photo that I took, to show you the possibilities of toning within Alien Skin Exposure X. You can get the 30% off deal right now by heading to their online store.[via Alien Skin] [post_title] => Alien Skin Software is Currently 30% Off For a Limited Time [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => alien-skin-software-is-currently-30-off-for-a-limited-time [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-02-23 14:38:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-02-23 19:38:03 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=63825 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 62893 [post_author] => 47213 [post_date] => 2016-01-27 13:29:03 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-01-27 18:29:03 [post_content] => Announced and released today from our friends at Adobe comes the latest in their Lightroom platform, with Lightroom 2015.4/6.4 available now as an update for both Creative Cloud users and those who simply bought Lightroom 6. Among the features in this newest updates is camera support for eight new camera systems, and a new tool called Boundary Warp, which will be a great asset to those who use crop tools and panoramic tools.
What is Boundary Warp? If you've stitched together panoramics, you've probably ran into the problem of the edges no longer being straight and rectangular. While the old way was to just crop in, losing parts of the image in the process, Adobe has come up with a newer solution with their latest tool called Boundary Warp. Boundary Warp analyzes the boundary automatically, and warps the image into place, giving you the full image in a rectangular crop. Like many of the tools Adobe has created involving analyzing and warping, Adobe suggests you give the algorithms a few attempts to master the effect.Additionally, Adobe has added Camera RAW support to the following cameras --
Additional Updates to Adobe Lightroom CC 2015 /6.4
- Fujifilm X70
- Fujifilm X-E2S
- Fujifilm X-Pro2
- Leica M (Typ 262)
- Leica X-U (Typ 113)
- Panasonic DMC-ZS60 (DMC-TZ80, DMC-TZ81, DMC-TZ85)
- Phase One IQ150
- Sony ILCA-68 (A68)
For more information about the latest release from Adobe, be sure to check out their blog, where they've also included the additional lens profiles added to Adobe Lightroom. This update is available now. [post_title] => Adobe Updates Lightroom and Adobe Camera Raw with Lightroom 2015.4/6.4 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => adobe-updates-lightroom-and-adobe-camera-raw-with-lightroom-2015-46-4 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-27 13:29:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-27 18:29:03 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=62893 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 61946 [post_author] => 47219 [post_date] => 2016-01-04 15:25:11 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-01-04 20:25:11 [post_content] => As if a visit to the Apple store couldn't get any more fun, the innovative company will now be offering free 1-hour photo workshops starting this month. The campaign is called Start Something New, and highlights the experience of creating beautiful art using Apple products and apps. The workshops will show people a new perspective on photography, offering tips to further enhance their technique as well as presenting a useful guide for first time Mac users. It’s a great way to get started if anyone had a slight curiosity about creating works of art with the products they use on a daily basis.The workshops offer a range of different topics, not only catering to photographers and videographers. Here are a few that Apple enthusiasts might be interested in: Mac Basics, Discover Apps for Apple Watch, and Share Your Ideas with Keynote for Mac.For photographers, here’s a short list of the workshops that will reel you in: iPhone Photography, iPhone Videography, and Perfect Your Photos on Mac.Reservations for the offered workshops are now LIVE. Head over to the Apple site to see where you can start.Additionally, Apple JUST launched two brand new workshops for 2016 that are not yet listed on their site: Shoot More Artistic Photos with iPhone, and Sketch, Draw, and Paint with iPad. For registration, you can check your local Apple Store page for availability. See the details provided by Apple below:
- Nikon 1 J4 Camera Matching Profile added
- The panorama merging process should complete roughly twice as fast as Lightroom 6.3
- Improved quality when applying Auto Straighten and Upright “Level” mode
- A preference was added to the Mac to prevent accidental “speed swiping”
- Metadata is added to merged panoramas to support Photoshop’s Adaptive Wide Angle filter
- Customers can now set the location of where photos are stored when downloaded from
- Lightroom mobile or Lightroom web in the preference panel or contextually in the folder panel
- Thumbnails update much quicker when copying and pasting settings in the grid view
- Images load faster in the Library module when you are zoomed in and navigating images
- Tethered support added for the Nikon D5500 and Nikon D7200
Shoot More Artistic Photos with iPhone
Bring your iPhone along for this hands-on workshop. We’ll teach you how to shoot photos more creatively and help you try out various accessories and techniques—like long exposure for light trails, using Time-lapse to show progression, or getting up close with nature using a macro lens. Then, we ‘ll explore artistic ways to adjust and edit your photos, so you can create a work of art, find your style, or just improve your skills.
Sketch, Draw, and Paint with iPad
Bring in your iPad and we’ll practice basic techniques for sketching, drawing, and painting. Use your own pencil or we’ll supply one for you to try. We’ll go step-by-step as we sketch together as a group and build our own gallery of artwork. Then, you’ll get time to put your new skills to work on your own project. This is an all-levels workshop—seasoned illustrators are welcome to partner with beginners and share techniques.
On Thursday, Jan. 7, Apple will be hosting a special event at their West 14th Street store with five artists from the Start Something New campaign. We'll see you there! [post_title] => Apple Store One Hour Workshops Now Live! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => apple-store-one-hour-workshops-now-live [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-05 13:51:19 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-05 18:51:19 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=61946 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 60624 [post_author] => 47221 [post_date] => 2015-11-19 11:00:35 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-11-19 16:00:35 [post_content] => ‘The Discovery of King Tut,’ opening on New York’s 5th Avenue on November 21st, is a new kind of exhibition. Nearly 100 years since the tomb's discovery in 1922, the exhibition will feature a reconstruction of the excavation site itself with over 1000 precision-crafted replicas that allow visitors to breathe in, walk through, and experience it as Archeologist Howard Carter once did. The tomb’s relics, now scattered across global museums, are expertly reconstructed to give visitors the opportunity to finally view the impressive collection as one whole.This extraordinary experience was largely made possible thanks to the photography of legendary archeological photographer Harry Burton, who pioneered this method of archeological recording, and have documented every aspect of the work in Tutankhamun’s tomb, from the list inventory taking, to the transfer of the finds to the Egyptian museum in Cairo.Burton was sent by the Metropolitan Museum to serve as the excavation photographer, and with his enormous camera and negative plates, burton’s devotion to his assignment endured while carrying the heavy equipment between Tutankhamun’s tomb and his improvised darkroom in a neighboring tomb. He documented every step of Carter’s work right down to the smallest details. The result was 2,800 large format glass negatives, documenting all the finds and their location in the tomb. Color photography was not an option for Burton, who made unsuccessful experiments on autochromes. Thankfully, Carter took meticulous notes describing the colors of the findings.
"Carter’s meticulous inventory notes were one of the most invaluable tools at our disposal, which described in great detail the various artifacts that were being catalogued and excavated. Thankfully, The Griffith Institute has transcribed the object cards which allowed tracking down the individual artifacts more straightforward, as in some of the photographs we were looking at over 50 artifacts within a single shot." The exhibition will feature Burton's photos, which have been reconstructed and colorized by Jordan J. Lloyd and his team at Dynamichrome, a company which specializes in colorizing black and white historic photos. "My background is in architecture and somewhere down the line several years ago, I had made a decision to specialize in architectural visualization, as my strongest skill set was based in Adobe Photoshop (more on this later)," Lloyd told us. "Around the same time, I had a request from my father to restore a heavily sun bleached photograph in the family home - as I took the photograph out of the frame, it was obvious it was previously a color photograph but the sun had bleached all the color and contrast from the image. At the time, I’d tried to adjust the curves and levels to bring the photograph back to life but the damage was too much, and the only thing I could think of at that point was having to somehow re-color it." "Around the same time, I was also an active contributor on Reddit’s (in)famous photoshop battles and pic requests, where I had seen quite a few colorizations and I thought, ‘I could do that’, and had a go," he said. "As I recall, the first ten images were absolutely rubbish, but the eleventh, a request for someone that I thought would be good practice blew up and front paged, and people were offering me money to do more. I’d resolved at that point to get much, much better, which led onto being a mod on /r/ColorizedHistory - a really great community of top notch colorizers and then all of a sudden we started hitting the news, regularly," Lloyd explained. "At that point I knew I wanted to make a business out of it, and I knew where I wanted to position myself in essentially a very small, specialist field - the photography and processing work is fascinating, but it’s nothing without the historical research which in itself is a completely different beast." "Several hundred photographs later, and Dynamichrome turned into a registered business and the complexity of running a business from a one man band into a small team and we’re now getting a clearer sense of what our mission statement is. Given the amount of attention colorization has received over the last couple of years, it’s pretty clear that history is in the public interest, and we’re working hard to legitimize digital color reconstruction by exposing the (difficult) process that presents an authentic, slightly different perspective to an original historical record. Given the number of requests we’ve had for other kinds of media like film, we’re now beginning to move into a new phase which is to tackle the subject of ‘history, reconstructed’ altogether. Over the next two years we’ll also be working with various collaborators do bring to the public historically reconstructed environments and architectural visualization, so if you ever wanted to know what a really old church or building looked like in the 16th century, we’re working on it. The way I see it, tackling a particular medium like photography is one thing, but using the same skill sets and a rigorous research process with subjects experts in a much wider arena is very exciting." "Our first collaboration with Tutankhamun related photographs, actually happened a couple of years ago, as the Ashmolean Museum of Art & Archeology in Oxford requested a couple of digitally color reconstructed photographs for an exhibition book," Lloyd explained. "After that, we were always interested in doing a further collaboration, and through curator Chris Wild over at Retronaut earlier this summer, we were put in touch with SC Exhibitions, who were in collaborating with the Griffith Institute on the upcoming major exhibition ‘The Discovery of King Tut’ opening on New York’s 5th Avenue on November 21st."
"I was also an active contributor on Reddit’s (in)famous photoshop battles and pic requests, where I had seen quite a few colorizations and I thought, ‘I could do that’, and had a go." "Carter’s meticulous inventory notes were one of the most invaluable tools at our disposal, which described in great detail the various artifacts that were being catalogued and excavated," Lloyd recounted. "Thankfully, The Griffith Institute has transcribed the object cards which allowed tracking down the individual artifacts more straightforward, as in some of the photographs we were looking at over 50 artifacts within a single shot." "Our team worked with The Griffith Institute and Egyptologist Dr. Wolfgang Wettengel for particular detailed clarifications, as well as comparing the photographs against the restored artifacts, now scattered across the globe."We then took into account the scientific effects of over 3000 years of dust, the lighting present at the time (both natural and oil-lit sources), how light would reflect onto varied surfaces, and even weather complications on the days the photos were taken to recreate an authentic sense of what Burton was seeing through the viewfinder."Hundreds of layers of color were added, one at a time, to bring the necessary depth to each image. All in, over 700 hours of work went into the digital color reconstruction of the entire series.The Griffith Institute has extremely high detailed scans of all of the photographs from the several year excavation, to which Lloyd and his team were given access. "In every shot we looked at, there was an element of minor to medium grain restoration work to be done as part of our preparation process before blocking in the color, which also added a considerable amount of time but the results are worth it when you see the photographs at 100% detail," Lloyd told us."Suffice to say, Burton’s extraordinary photographs are unique given its context and they are framed meticulously - the black and white versions are irreplaceable. Our hope is that when seeing the photographs side by side, the viewer may have a better appreciation for the awe-inspiring views that Carter, Burton and their team experienced." "Initially the digitally color reconstructed photographs of Burton’s originals were intended as part of the overall marketing, though I’ve been told that the exhibition itself will now feature a new addition focusing on the reconstructed color images - we’re also possibly working on a mini-documentary about the process which may feature in the exhibition," Lloyd continued. Lloyd explained how Dynamichrome came to be and has grown to what it is. "Dynamichrome has expanded into a small team of people who work mainly remotely, and its the reason why we can move forward into expanding our current role," he said. "Depending on the workload, the restoration and color blocking is shared between the image specialists where the aim is to prepare the photograph for the color pass based on extensive research. In 99% of cases, photographs received need some form of minor to major restoration work and tonal correction to try and get the photograph looking like the condition it was at the point of its creation: foxing, mildew, cracked glass, dust, scratches etc. which I’m sure as many people know is a laborious process. We’re actually getting better at doing reconstruction work for really badly damaged photographs, which presents a completely different challenge." "We also have a burgeoning network of writers. This is really important to us, because the story behind the photograph is usually incredibly interesting and we want to make it accessible and informative. Over the next year we’ll really be focusing on this and therefore the value of the image is increased greatly because there’s a compelling story we want to share - not just about the context, but also a retrospective looking back and all kinds of other stories attached to it, like the lives of the photographers, or what happened to companies whose adverts you can see in the photograph, etc." "Tying this together is Emily, our Content Development Manager. Rather than take a scattershot approach and just keep churning out random photographs, our strategy is to have an active calendar of new content and stories that tie into national holidays, historical events and so forth that bring a relevancy to the content and make them topical. We often find that history tends to repeat itself and it makes a lot of the content eerily as relevant today as it was a hundred years ago. Further, we work together with subjects specialists either on a project basis, but we also have regular consultants who we work with like Jaana, a textile conservator whose knowledge of clothing, garments, costume and period dress is quite staggering."Check out more information about The Discovery of King Tut here at tutnyc.com and dynamichrome.com. [post_title] => Colorizing History: How Jordan Lloyd and Dynamichrome Brought Color to King Tut's Excavation [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => colorizing-history-how-jordan-lloyd-and-dynamichrome-brought-color-to-king-tuts-excavation [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2015-11-18 17:54:20 [post_modified_gmt] => 2015-11-18 22:54:20 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=60624 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 2 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 60452 [post_author] => 47216 [post_date] => 2015-11-18 18:25:19 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-11-18 23:25:19 [post_content] => Experience. It's what gives photographers the know-how necessary to succeed in this competitive business. While it takes decades to truly instill confidence in clients (and in yourself) that you can get the job done, there are a ways to get a head start in the all important game of acting as if know what the hell you're doing. One of those ways is to attend a workshop, such as CreateShops NYC Photo Workshop, presented by Daniel Castro. Recently, I had the privilege of attending the very first iteration of this event, which I left with beautiful portraits, valuable business knowledge, and some indispensable retouching tips and tricks. Saturday morning, I walked into the beautiful Colony Studios where the workshop was held and saw a full photography team hard at work setting up a high end fashion shoot. Among the 25 or so people was a group of around 15 students, politely breakfasting on the greatest donuts known to man. The students ranged in skill and experience from those simply interested in photography to creative directors and professional freelance photographers. The range of skill levels ultimately worked as a disadvantage to the class, as some of the information went over the heads of half the audience, yet was too basic for the other half. Ultimately, I believe the responsibility of matching the student to the class lies in the hands of CreateShops. They could have done more to specify what type of photography experience is expected of the students, but I suspect this sort of organization will arise once they have a few more classes to offer.After waiting around for the class to actually start, I was in the audience of an intimate presentation given by Daniel Castro, an accomplished beauty and advertising photographer who has recently entered into directing, stop motion and many other visual pursuits. Daniel began the workshop by teaching the ins and outs of the business behind creating beautifully complex images. According to Daniel, it all starts with the "elevator pitch," how you present yourself as a creative professional in only a few short sentences. The presentation then moved from getting the attention of potential clients to creating an engaging proposal, brainstorming techniques for storyboarding, preparing for the shoot, and (last but not least) budgeting everything you need. I particularly enjoyed the section on the dos and don'ts of negotiating usage rights, a very tricky topic indeed. The morning was filled with rich details on the step by step process of getting and impressing big name clients with your own unique style and creative flair. After a delicious lunch, the workshop changed gears to a detailed explanation of the particular studio setup that would be shot that day. During this segment of the workshop, the problem with having a large range of experience among the students became very obvious. Some had created similar setups themselves while others had yet to use a remote flash before, and Daniel and his team had some trouble interpreting the blank stares that were offered by an audience that was half mystified and half bored. It's difficult to create a learning environment that makes strangers feel comfortable enough to admit they're confused, but doing so would really bring CreateShops's workshops to a higher level. Still, Daniel and his crew were sincerely open to questions and I have no doubt they'll improve on this aspect of teaching in short time. Once everyone gained a some degree of an understanding of how the shoot would unfold, we were all given the chance to make some gorgeous images ourselves (like the one below). Day two began much like the first, with an informative presentation from Daniel. This time, he focused on the importance of marketing, branding, and advertising yourself as a photographer. The success of this presentation was evident as the students once again gave their "elevator pitches," this time with a focus and clarity as to who they are as creative professionals. The afternoon was spent learning retouching skills from the amazing Zach Ahern of Black Magic Retouch. Using the photos taken the day before, Zach walked the class through the step by step process he uses to turn great raw photos into amazing images (some of Zach's crazy process can be appreciated here). Like the other hands-on segments of this workshop, the varying experience of the students diminished the effectiveness of the lesson, and Zach would occasionally skip over steps that to him seemed obvious but to many of the students were entirely knew concepts. The most useful part of the retouching lesson was the one-on-one help that was offered; I think that type of teaching needs to be emphasized in more workshops. While the three hours spent on photoshop were nowhere near the time needed to master the techniques presented, the core concepts behind Zach's retouching prowess were very helpful to those who could keep up. The workshop wrapped up with constructive portfolio reviews with professionals and the other students in small groups. It's always valuable to get feedback from a fresh set of eyes, and these portfolio reviews were no exception. Though there were a few hiccups that were typical of an inaugural workshop, such as the model showing up two hours late, Daniel and his team took them in stride. Once the CreateShops teachers gain more experience in engaging students, the value of the information conveyed will really set them apart. However, the most unique characteristic of this particular workshop was how genuine it was. By "genuine" I mean that it was truly designed to help the students, not drain every last dollar from them. Unlike every other workshop I have ever attended, Daniel made exactly zero attempts to get more money from the students. Zero attempts. This is not only a refreshing reminder that some teachers really do have their students' best interests in mind, but also a testament to the complete set of knowledge offered by CreateShops. In part, no other workshops were pitched because CreateShops has nothing else to pitch yet, but it's also clear that this particular workshop simply was't designed to leave any valuable items of knowledge out. Daniel et al packed as much personal expertise as they could into one weekend, giving all who attended second-hand experience that can only come from respected and seasoned professionals. If you have the skills but lack the some of the knowhow, CreateShops may be able to get you all caught up and even be a springboard into a rewarding career as a professional photographer.Overall, I would give this workshop four out of five stars, with the expectation that it will wrinkle out some of the inefficiencies soon. [post_title] => Review: CreateShops Gives Budding Professional Photographers a Head Start [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => review-createshops-gives-budding-professional-photographers-a-head-start [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2015-11-18 17:25:56 [post_modified_gmt] => 2015-11-18 22:25:56 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=60452 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 58822 [post_author] => 47215 [post_date] => 2015-09-28 12:50:29 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-09-28 16:50:29 [post_content] => Retouching timelapse videos seem to give an insight into the workflow and mindset of a creative in a very quick and entertaining view. It isn’t by any means a tutorial, but it does give viewers a sense of how a particular retouching artist approaches an image, and allows the viewer to get a sense of appreciation for what goes into retouching. Recently, there have been some that went viral and I wanted to paint a picture into some others that were really beautifully done. So we took it upon ourselves to create others to serve as a bookmark to show clients what it’s all about. These are from my colleagues, who I know all do good work.I specifically asked these colleagues if they were interested in doing this project and this is what we created together.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEf71B3Ym2A&feature=youtu.beRetoucher: Obi Grant https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMxLwYUXgn8Retoucher: David Neilands https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZg4L6YILw8Retoucher: Chris Lambeth https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWTnSBRyl94&feature=youtu.beRetoucher: Natalia Fadejeva https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_GRllrVNW8Retoucher: Sabine Metz https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMisjSYElkIRetoucher: Pratik Naik [post_title] => The Six Best Beauty Retouching Timelapse Videos You Should Watch [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-six-best-beauty-retouching-timelapse-videos-you-should-watch [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2015-09-28 12:50:29 [post_modified_gmt] => 2015-09-28 16:50:29 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=58822 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 55916 [post_author] => 30241 [post_date] => 2015-07-16 12:31:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-07-16 16:31:59 [post_content] =>
We've been talking about it for months and today we're happy to finally have our review of the Adobe Photoshop Competitor, Serif Affinity Photo. Through the whole process of their development of the platform, we've been really impressed by the Affinity developer's desire to "get it right." At every turn, it appears that they are really listening to customers and making changes to the platform.
In this review, I have been assisted by high-end retoucher Pratik Naik, who will be providing the bulk of the "should you buy it" information. He had a hand in basically any insight below on to how a particular tool works in certain situations, and how they compare to the competition. His credentials are top notch, and he has been kind enough to give us a bit of his very busy time to share his thoughts on how the platform competes in this space. Special thanks to Pratik's Facebook friends who supplied many of the questions he focused on when testing out the platform.
As you can imagine, this program is massive, just like Photoshop, and we of course did not cover absolutely everything the program can do. What we did do is give you some highlights of what we noticed in how we both use Photoshop on a day to day basis, myself from a graphic artist perspective, and Pratik from a retouching perspective.
Before we get into the performance of the platform, let's go over what Affinity Photo looks like, how it functions and how you can expect to use it.
Affinity Photo is set up similarly to what you have come to expect, but it has some key differences. Firstly, as we mentioned in our Beta review, the way Affinity handles raw files is different. If you're a Photoshop user, you're used to seeing a smaller window appear in front of your main Photoshop window that contains all of the Adobe Camera Raw adjustment settings. In Affinity, there is no smaller window, but rather their "Develop" panel takes the place of the entire Affinity panel like so:
If you had a photo, or set of photos, open before opening a raw file, Affinity simply opens the raw in a new tab and continues to give you uninterrupted access to whatever you were working on previously. You can work on the raw for a few moments, switch back to a jpeg or tiff you were working on in a different tab, and then resume work on the raw at any point. At first it's a bit jarring of a difference, but once you get used to it, it's a really nice way to handle files.
The raw photo adjustments are very similar to what you would expect out of Photoshop as well, though it doesn't appear Affinity has any library of lens profile corrections the way Photoshop does. You can make any adjustments you want manually, but there weren't any that automatically showed.
Creating that graphic above brought to light a couple other little details I noticed about Affinity that graphic designers might be curious about. When I am creating documents, sometimes I like to know exactly the pixel dimensions of a particular file quickly and make new, blank documents based on those dimensions. Affinity does show those in the upper left hand corner, but if I select all, copy and then go to make a new document, it doesn't auto-fill the new document with the copied document's exact pixel dimensions.
Let me explain that a bit better. In the image above, you can see three screenshots that were placed beside each other on a wide blank canvas. In order to determine the size of that blank canvas, I took the height of my screen shots (average, since they all had a slightly different height) and then multiplied the width (average width) by three and then added 100 pixels to account for the white spacing between each. In Photoshop, to get this halfway done, simply selecting, copying and then going to make a new document auto-fills the new document pixel dimensions with whatever I had just copied. Affinity does not do this, but instead remembers whatever the last dimensions typed into it were. So, I was slightly slowed down in my process.
Jumping back into raw performance, Pratik was very impressed with how the program handled raw files: "I used an assortment of images from the Pentax 645z, Canon 5DIII, Nikon D810, Hasselblad, and Phase one camera systems. It seemed like Affinity did a lot better with how the colors looked in the raw converter than in Photoshop’s Camera Raw. Capture One still did the best render of the raw images in regard to apparent color accuracy. But it’s pretty impressive how much better Affinity was compared to PS in that aspect." This is huge news, since Pratik and I have been talking for a long time now about a possible third independent contender for raw processing. The last time we tested it, it was for a program called Mylio, and Pratik was pretty disgusted with how it treated raw files. To say Affinity was not only good, but better than Photoshop, is a massive achievement for the program.
Pratik did notice that the shadow recovery tool in raw editing wasn't perfect though. "The shadow recovery tool muddied out the colors in the raw processor." I noticed that Affinity tended to give preference to highlight areas in images, showing significantly brighter rendering of a digital negative than Photoshop would give. This is especially noticeable below in the photo of the rusty gears.
Below are two examples of how a photo looked when exported from Photoshop and from Affinity, with no adjustments made to the files. This is to give you an idea of how each program renders the raw data. Both photos were taken with a Pentax 645z, and have been cropped to account for their massive size for web display.[caption id="attachment_55920" align="aligncenter" width="838"] Affinity Photo Raw Export[/caption][caption id="attachment_55922" align="aligncenter" width="838"] Photoshop Raw Export[/caption][caption id="attachment_55921" align="aligncenter" width="838"] Affinity Photo Raw Export[/caption][caption id="attachment_55923" align="aligncenter" width="838"] Photoshop Raw Export[/caption]
Getting into how things actually work, first we wanted to let you know that Affinity provides a really great set of tutorials and a showcase of their best features. Even if you don’t buy the program, you can see how they stack up vs Photoshop: https://affinity.serif.com/en-us/tutorials/photo/
Pratik was impressed with the "Blend Ranges" feature in Affinity. It's like the "Blend If" modes in Photoshop, but with more finesse in the curves functionality. Check it out: https://vimeo.com/130959696
He also liked that brush hardness is visible next to flow or opacity. The Healing brush has a flow setting too and it works really fast, much faster than expected. The Quick Mask allows you to view output in various views (transparent, on white, black, etc). It makes it a lot better for the purpose of extractions for those who need it.
Pratik also noted that there are some features that require conversion into Smart Objects in Photoshop, but that isn't the case in Affinity: "There are some filters that are only adjustable when you covert them to Smart Objects in Photoshop, such as the blur filter. In Affinity, you can apply it right away without converting it to a smart object. We call these Smart Filters in Photoshop. And if you apply multiple smart filters to a layer, you only have one mask for the entire bunch of smart filters. In Affinity, aside from not having the need to convert the layer into a smart object, you also get masks for each of the filters. This isn’t huge, but just an example of the small tweaks found through the program."
Live Filters are sweet, and allow you to apply filters without having the need to convert an image into a “smart object.” Here’s a video to illustrate what I’m referring to: https://vimeo.com/125234685
Something else we noticed about Affinity is that the native format .afphoto was considerably smaller than a .psd file, and seemed to save faster. For instance, Pratik said he opened an image and made 8 duplicates of the background and saved it in the native .afphoto extension. This is the equivalent to .psd in Photoshop. It ended up saving instantly and also only being 90mb in size. He did this again, this time only making 3 duplicates of the background and exporting it into the .psd format. It went up to 3 times the original file size at 180mb in .psd. Whatever Affinity is doing, they're making their files a lot smarter on how they handle large numbers of high megapixel layers.
"I could also export the .afphoto layer stack into .psd later as well whenever I want to," Pratik also noted. However, when using blank layers with healing or cloning work and a variation of changes, they were more comparable.
Another cool note is that the Liquify tool doesn’t tend to blur pixels in areas that you work on. They seem to stay sharp! Of course they stretch when you push it, but it seems a lot sharper than Photoshop. It also seems to work more fluidly as well. That said, Pratik was left wishing for different brushes in the Liquify Persona menu. "The power of liquify with different brushes would be amazing. Also being able to add non-linear guidelines/rulers would be great."
History states can be saved, even after you close a document: "You can save your history states even when you close out of the document. You have the option to send the document with all the history states intact for someone else."
When looking at how Affinity handled cloning, there were some mixed results. On one hand, when you clone or heal, after you hit alt/option to source, it puts an anchor point right away to show you exactly where you sourced from before brushing. This is very helpful along with the live preview your cursor usually enables in PS. On the other hand, Pratik was disappointed with the speed: "With the speed in which I work, when I was healing or cloning, it did’t register my source point about half the time. I often pick my source point rapidly and it didn’t keep up with me. But if you’re slower and more careful, it worked fine. But this needs to be improved to work as fast as Photoshop. It may just be my machine and I have no way of verifying since we all have different systems."
Pratik and I noticed a few things when it came to saving a document. "Right now, if you want to save a document to a PSD, you have to export the file into a PSD. You can’t do it through the File>Save As command." In fact, that command seems reserved only for saving a document as a .afphoto extension. To get anything else, you have to use the "export" command. This is a bit nit-picky, but Pratik and I agree it would just be easier to have everything under one prompt. "It also needs to save to PSD faster," he noted. "When I tried to export is as a PSD, it took considerably longer than Photoshop. Perhaps it’s just my system." It could be that, or it could be that it takes a lot more power to convert to a format that isn't native to Affinity Photo.
Some general things Pratik noticed that could use improvement:
- It doesn’t seem to be able to bring in actions from Photoshop so this may be a deal breaker for many. But it has a Macro tab where you can record your own. For some reason, my version didn’t have it so it may be that they’re still working on finalizing it from the beta in a future release. I’d like to have the ability to load these actions.
- I don’t use any plugins at all but I am not sure about the compatibility between many of the popular ones out there.
- Below a certain pixel radius, the cursor goes from being a circle to the cross hatch. This is not idea for dodging/burning where you need to see the exact brush size when every pixel size makes a difference.
Generally speaking, Affinity managed to improve upon their Beta and offer a platform that's even better than we were expecting. It has very similar extraction tools as Photoshop and works as you would expect. If you want to see how a lot of their tools work, make sure to check out their tutorials page for a lot of videos that show things in action.
Photographers who use Lightroom will probably stick with Photoshop since it works more intuitively with it. Especially as Lightroom has options like “Edit in Photoshop,” it seems to make for a more organic workflow for Adobe users as the programs play nice with each other. That said, if you're not married to Lightroom, or you have purchased a perpetual license of Lightroom and don't want to get in on the Adobe CC model, pairing Affinity with Lightroom may not work seamlessly, but it can happen. It's a much better option than using Gimp, and the program plays well with Adobe apps (as well as can be expected since it's not made by Adobe).
- Intuitive workspace
- Excellent base raw processor, perhaps better than Photoshop
- Live Filters are awesome
- File sizes created by Affinity are generally more compact than out of Photoshop
- When you clone or heal, after you hit alt/option to source, it puts an anchor point right away to show you exactly where you sourced from before brushing.
- Liquify seems more robust than in Photoshop, keeping areas sharp instead of blurring pixels
- Healing brush flow settings are great, and work quickly
- History states are saved even after closing a document
- It's downright cheap at $50 for a perpetual license.
- Shadow recovery muddies colors in the raw processor
- Saving/exporting seems convoluted
- Source point registration in cloning/healing wasn't fast enough to keep up with swift workflows
- Photoshop Actions are not importable, and it's unclear if Photoshop Plugins will work
- Needs different brush options in the Liquify Persona, as well as the ability to add non-linear guides
Affinity Photo is really, really close to Photoshop as far as usability goes. "If you’re new to the world of processing, I’d recommend this software over Gimp," Pratik mentioned. "The fact that it’s even being compared to Photoshop is a win for the program. I wouldn’t switch over from Photoshop for the reasons mentioned above regarding improvement, but it has so much to offer that it’s almost unbelievable." Basically, if you're already locked in to the Adobe system, it's really hard to leave. But if you're one of those guys who has refused the CC model and is steadfastly using CS6 because you're not a fan of the "rented" software concept, than Affinity Photo is certainly worth trying. The pricing is unbelievably good, and the quality of the software is as good, if not better, than Photoshop in places. Of course Photoshop has places where it too is better than Affinity, but Photoshop has had many more iterations to make those improvements. To see this robust of a software platform, with promises from the developers for continued major updates/additions over the approximate 2 year lifetime of this software (who have already shown they are trustworthy in this regard), it's hard to not be really impressed.
"They seem to listen to user input and improvement," Pratik noted after comparing the finished software to what he tested a few months ago in the beta. "So if you want something, they have keen ears and it appears that they are eager to bring what’s missing." If you watched our original Beta review, Pratik mentions that the color temperature isn't in Kelvin, like we are used to, but measured in a sort of weird, degree format. In the final release, color temperature is in Kelvin, which right there shows that the developers listened to feedback.
Resource Magazine and Pratik Naik give Serif Affinity Photo a solid 4 out of 5 stars for an excellent raw processor, powerful tools and excellent usability, held back by a short list of small complaints that are easily amendable in updates, should Affinity wish to address them. Affinity Photo is easily the closest competitor to Photoshop right now at an incredibly low price point, which is very, very exciting. [post_title] => Affinity Photo Review: It's Amazing How Powerful This Program Is [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => affinity-photo-review-its-amazing-how-powerful-this-program-is [to_ping] => [pinged] => https://vimeo.com/130959696 https://vimeo.com/125234685 [post_modified] => 2015-07-16 12:56:53 [post_modified_gmt] => 2015-07-16 16:56:53 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://resourcemagonline.com/?p=55916 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 3 [filter] => raw ))