This picture taken at Porto Cathedral in the early evening when the building was nearly empty and the sun was low in the sky. There is enough dynamic range in the RAW file to bring up the shadows and recover more depth in the sky, but it’s going to need some careful local adjustments. This […]
Image retouching can be as simple as removing a couple of sensor spots from a sky or cloning out a few scraps of rubbish in a landscape shot. It can also be a highly-valued professional skill in the fashion and advertising industry.
Plenty of programs offer spot removal and retouching tools, some with 'content aware' object removal that attempts to replace unwanted objects with details from the surroundings. Where these work or not depends on the particular image – you can think of them as no-loss experiments. If they don't work you can simply hit the Undo button and go back to regular cloning tools.
The principles of the Clone Stamp tool in Photoshop and its equivalent in other programs are pretty simple. Getting a good results doesn't need any particular technical understanding – instead, it relies heavily on experience, subtlety, patience and skill. You can read about it as much as you like, but it's only by doing it that you get the 'touch'.
Adobe’s content-aware technology, as found in Photoshop and Elements, has a rival. Perfect Photo Suite 8 now has a Perfect Eraser tool in its Perfect Layers module. It works just like its Adobe equivalent – you paint over the object you want to remove and it magically vanishes, replaced by surrounding details and textures. Adobe’s […]
Spots, blemishes and messy details can spoil otherwise great shots, but you can fix them without ever leaving Aperture. You’ve probably spotted the Retouch tool on the bottom toolbar, and this does a decent enough job on minor problems, but have you tried the Aperture Spot and Patch tool in the main tools panel? Maybe […]
To be honest, I don’t use portrait enhancement plug-ins that much. It’s too easy to end up with something that looks like a porcelain doll rather than a real person. However, I do like shooting portraits, and I do realise that sometimes the lighting or your own technique doesn’t do your subject any favours – so […]
Shooting in available light often gives the most natural and attractive portraits, but it also means you often have to shoot at high ISOs. I took this informal picture while I was working on a feature for N-Photo magazine, and while the light from the window is soft and even, it’s not very bright and […]