David Cardinal: Ambient Light in the Digital Workflow
Jul 2012 19

For all the time photographers spend worrying about color reproduction, and lighting their subjects, far too little attention is paid to the importance of light after the photograph is taken. Until you spend some time actually doing a comparison, it is hard to believe how much difference ambient light — the light that just happens to be there when you edit, print, or display your images — makes to the appearance of images.

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CD Tobie: SpyderTune: Spyder4ELITE’s Secret Weapon
Nov 2012 20

The launch of Spyder4ELITE earlier this year brought a new tool to display calibration and the digital color workflow: SpyderTune. This feature is easy to overlook when running Spyder4ELITE, as it is not part of the wizard workflow. It only appears as an alternate tab in the SpyderProof window, where the results of your calibration are displayed. Choosing this alternate tab brings up the SpyderProof test image set on all connected displays, with a new set of controls on the right.

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Webinar: Advanced Workflow Using Lightroom 4 and Photoshop CS6
Feb 2013 05

There may be some difficulty that comes along with leveraging the strengths of both Lightroom 4 and Photoshop CS6, and achieving optimal image quality and impact. This webinar will cover techniques to make doing so a bit easier.

Techniques will include: RAW image import into Lightroom (including concurrent backups), and progress through image review and selection, incorporating metadata, color and tonal corrections, use of adjustment layers, image transformations/perspective adjustments, lens corrections, global and selective sharpening, and printing. The process of setting up Lightroom will also be reviewed to make moving back and forth between Photoshop more manageable.

Watch as Datacolor Experts David Saffir and C. David Tobie explore the building blocks of integrating Lightroom 4 and Photoshop CS6 workflows.

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C. David Tobie: SpyderLENSCAL for Video Focus Control
Apr 2013 30

Datacolor’s SpyderLENSCAL is used to check the auto-focus on still cameras, and to micro-adjust the auto-focus on cameras with micro-adjustment controls in their in-camera menu. However, there are other uses for SpyderLENSCAL. This article describes how to use it to assist with focus settings in video, TV, and cinema capture workflows.

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C. David Tobie: Workspace Conditions and Color Critical Work
May 2013 09

Views are a wonderful thing, and when you work your way up to a corner office, the idea of blackout shades dimming your room to low light levels, and not allowing you to even see whether the sun is shining or not is something that many resist. After all; you’re an editor (architect, advertising account manager, etc) now, not a photo retoucher (draftsman, graphic designer, etc). However; if you select the images for articles, choose amongst architectural renderings, or ad versions, or if you are in any way part of the workflow that processes images and layouts for press output, web output, fine art prints, wedding albums, or any other color critical use, then either you are part of the color managed solution… or else you are part of the color management problem.

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Top Reasons Why You Should Consider Calibrating Your Display
Aug 2013 13

Photographers, videographers and designers can work confidently on a properly color calibrated screen and can assert greater control over the color fidelity of their digital process. Images can be reliably assessed and adjusted on a properly calibrated display, enabling true-to-life reproduction of image files.

Displays are normally set at the factory for a brightly lit office environment, more for word processing than image editing. This “fresh from the box” condition can be very frustrating. First, you have very little chance of seeing the correct color. Second, the brightness and contrast settings kill shadow and highlight detail, and often flatten out mid-tone transitions.

Calibrating your display will bring the performance of the device in line with requirements for photography, giving you rich but not over-saturated color, accurate neutral grays, good mid-tones, and realistic shadows and highlights.

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David Cardinal: Cintiq Companion – An all-in-one, pro-quality, mobile digital darkroom
Apr 2014 02

Wacom tablets — and especially the Cintiq portable touch-enabled display versions — have been wildly popular with serious photographers and graphic artists for years. Until now, using one on the road has meant bringing along both a laptop and a tablet. With Wacom’s new Cintiq Companion, Windows users can have it all in one device. The Companion runs Windows 8.1 — including all of Adobe Creative Cloud’s applications — on a high-end pressure-sensitive display that supports both multi-touch and a Wacom stylus.

Unlike most Android and iOS tablets, the Companion is essentially a full laptop — minus the keyboard. It features a powerful i7 processor, 8 GB of RAM, and either a 256 GB or 512 GB solid-state disk for storage. It has mini-DisplayPort for driving an external monitor, as well as two USB 3.0 ports — handy for high-performance card readers and an external mouse or keyboard. Wacom also sells a small — but not backlit — Bluetooth keyboard.

The Companion provides a great starting point for a full, mobile, digital darkroom, but putting a workable system together still requires some planning and effort.

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