David Cardinal: Nikon D810 Raises the Bar for Image Quality: Still Benefits from SpyderCheckr 24® Calibration
Aug 2014 27

While the Nikon D810 is not a massive upgrade from its predecessor, the Nikon D800 (e-version), the sensor has been tweaked for improved color and dynamic range. The result is apparent in test results – with DxOMark rating it a new record 97, compared to 95 – and in images. I’ve been able to shoot in a variety of challenging lighting situations with excellent results. Similarly, images from the camera show excellent color, even before being corrected. Even starting from such an excellent base, there’s room for further improvement with a SpyderCHECKR-based profile, which we’ll cover later in the article. While even the D810 can’t create detail where there is none in the white sky, it is good enough to keep the detail in the shaded flowerbed in front, while also showing detail in the sunlit buildings in the background – all with no exposure compensation.

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Seán Duggan: Understanding Photoshop’s Missing & Mismatched Profile Messages
Aug 2014 20

In Photoshop’s Color Settings dialog (Edit > Color Settings) you can specify a working space for RGB (the spaces for CMYK, Gray, and Spot pertain to to images that will be reproduced on a printing press). The RGB working space should always be set to a device-independent color space (i.e. Adobe RGB, sRGB, or ProPhoto RGB). Even though the profile for your monitor is available in this menu, you should not use a profile that represents a particular piece of hardware for your RGB working space.

In terms of which working space to use, and with what type of files, that is another article all on its own, and I’ll delve into that topic in more detail in another column. The important thing to understand is that the RGB working space you choose in the Color Settings is only used as a default setting for any new files you create in Photoshop (i.e., totally blank documents), or as a baseline for how to interpret a file that has no embedded color profile. You can choose to work in other color spaces on a per-file basis.

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Trip of a Lifetime: Datacolor Contest Winner Rosemary Romito’s Week with Cardinal Photo and the Bears of Alaska
Aug 2014 12

Rosemary Romito is the lucky winner of our Datacolor Sweepstakes contest, co-sponsored by Sigma Photo. She won an all-expenses-paid trip with me on one of my Alaskan Grizzly Bear (aka Brown Bear) and Puffin photo safaris.

Coming from the intense heat of Las Vegas, the cool weather of Alaska was a refreshing change for Rosemary as the trip started. The first evening we all went out to dinner at a restaurant overlooking a seaplane lake in Anchorage — not the sort of thing you’d see in the desert environs of Nevada — then had a quick briefing on what to expect during the week, and finally got some rest before our charter flight to the Silver Salmon Creek Lodge in Lake Clark Park.

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David Saffir: The New SpyderCHECKR 24 From Datacolor – Camera Color Correction for Photo and Video
Aug 2014 05

I’ve been working with the new SpyderCHECKR 24, which is the latest addition to the Datacolor toolbox for still photography and videography. It’s convenient, portable, and most important, very effective.

Every combination of lens, camera, and sensor has a unique color signature, and this may change in different lighting conditions. And, of course, these devices don’t perceive or record color the way the human eye does. And that’s where the SpyderCHECKR 24 comes in.

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Seán Duggan: Working with One Lightroom Catalog on Multiple Computers
Jul 2014 31

Most photographers’ digital life doesn’t revolve around a single computer. In this article we’ll explore some of the ways to use one Lightroom catalog on multiple computers.

One Catalog on an External Drive

The easiest way to use one catalog on multiple computers is to keep the Lightroom catalog file on an external hard drive, and move that drive between the computers. Since there is only one catalog file, it will always be up to date, no matter what computer you’re using.

To move your Lightroom catalog onto an external drive, first quit Lightroom. Then move the catalog files to the new drive. The default location where Lightroom stores the catalog files is in a folder named “Lightroom”, which is stored in the Pictures folder on a Mac, and in the My Pictures folder on a Windows machine (so, for example, the file path would look like something like this: Drivename>Pictures>Lightroom).

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Ken Sklute: Stormy Weather, Lightning, and Photography
Jul 2014 23

Ahh, summertime! Long days, short nights and lots of weather happening. Summertime to me means warm humid beach days along both coasts, cold days in San Francisco, frost and remnants of snow in the beautiful area of Mt. Rainier in Washington State and my favorite, Monsoon season in the desert southwest.

Monsoon season in Phoenix delivers storms almost every day. When I say storms, I am talking about thunderstorms. What is unique to this area is these thunderstorms very rarely have rain associated with them, making it an ideal location to chase storms.

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Seán Duggan: Gradient Adjustments (Part 3)
Jul 2014 16

In the first part of this article, we explored how gradient adjustments can be made in-camera, by using a graduated neutral density filter. In Part 2, we covered basic gradient adjustments in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom. To conclude this series, we’ll take a look at making gradient adjustments in Adobe Photoshop.
Gradient Masks in Photoshop

The Photoshop equivalent to the gradual filter in Lightroom is to create a gradient layer mask that can be used with adjustment layers. Although simple gradient adjustments are easily applied in Lightroom, gradient masks in Photoshop allow for more customization, as well as the ability to use the gradient mask for editing that goes beyond tonal and color adjustments. This includes blending different images together in a composite.

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Datacolor SpyderHD: Color Management for Photo and Video
Jul 2014 09

Datacolor’s David Saffir recently spoke on color management for video at B&H. While he was there, he also had an on-camera interview with B&H’s Steven Gladstone regarding the new SpyderHD calibration kit for video and still photography. You can find the video here.

Lee Varis: Options In SpyderCube Workflow – Music Studio Shoot Part 2 of 2
Jul 2014 02

Most of the time I was also shooting video and, after doing a custom white balance in-camera, I pretty much had to stick with one setting for everything and try to get a decent overall exposure within the frame. For the video, I used a slightly blue white balance card to cheat the white balance a little warmer – this is a common trick for video to prevent the footage from looking too cold. This also had a slight benefit for the high iso – my camera, a Cannon 5D mk II, has a tendency to go blue in the shadows at the highest ISO.

The SypderCube proved to be very helpful in rough calibrating the color shift in the shadows…

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Video: SpyderHD™ – For Color Management in Video and Still Photography
Jun 2014 25

This video provides a detailed introduction to features and benefits of Datacolor’s new flagship product, SpyderHD.

SpyderHD offers unprecedented flexibility and accuracy for videographers and still photographers. It is the first product to calibrate both computer displays and video reference displays First, it offers precise color calibration via the Spyder4ELITE™ colorimeter. Photographers and videographers can calibrate their desktops, laptops, video reference monitors, field video monitors, and television screens. Computer-driven displays and video-driven monitors are supported.

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