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PIXelations 4

post processed

by fotofinish , 08-09-2005 at 09:20 AM (353 Views)

From 222 pictures down to 64. That is what the final total is that I will turn over to the museum (see the August 8 pixilation…).

I downloaded all of the raw pictures from my one-gig and two-gig cards from my card reader to a subdirectory in my Originals directory. I then copied that subdirectory to my working directory. Once there I was able to go to work without fear of having changed any of my original files. I will later back up the Originals directory to a data DVD for safe keeping.

Next, I used Adobe Bridge to examine my working directory. I began the process of deleting the blurred, the unsalvageable under exposed, the unsalvageable overexposed, duplicates, and any other shots I deemed were off the topic of highlighting the sun dial creation steps. This reduced the photo total down to 120 pictures.

So now I could begin my workflow. Essentially, I opened each in the raw converter. For the indoor shots, I increased the temperature from 5750. Although I used the “shade” white balance for both my outdoor and also my indoor shots, the color of the indoor shots needed some warming up to bring out more color. I also adjusted exposure, contrast, and saturation to taste for each picture.

Once I opened each in Photoshop CS2, the first thing I do is run the Photokit capture sharpener. Then I would add a curves adjustment, and a hue and saturation adjustment. Finally, I would run an action I recorded in CS2.

This action would first update the File Info with my copyright statement. Next, it would resize the image to 640px on the long side and then reduce the image from 16 bits to 8 bits. The last step of the action would run Photokit’s output sharpener for the web. I saved the finished result as a jpeg to my output subdirectory. I also sometimes had to run the picture through my denoiser, especially the 800 iso shots. I bought the 20D profile and denoiser software, Define by NIK Multimedia. I would then resharpen as the last step.

Thanks to my friends here at photozo and POTN, I was able to create a professional looking label for the CD I burned with the final 64 pictures. The CD label has a copyright disclaimer, contact information for me and what I am calling myself, fotofinish photography, and brief lab printing instructions in case the museum wants 4×6 prints. The instructions tell the lab not to color manage, and not to resize the pictures. I have already addressed both of these issues in my post processing. I printed a similar label for the CD case.

Here’s a picture of the big sun dial near the museum’s garden:

Here’s another of some of the materials used in the event:

For additional pictures from this shoot, look here.


by fotofinish , 08-10-2005 at 09:30 AM (417 Views)

The museum called me first yesterday at exactly the moment I had picked up the phone to dial them. It seems one of the mothers at the sun dial making event called asking for copies of any pictures of her daughter. Apparently her daughter was deaf and she wants to submit the pictures to a Newsletter For The Deaf.

I called the mother and made arrangements with her to send her 4×6 prints. She asked me if there was a charge for this. I was taken by surprise. I quickly figured that I can’t go out-of-pocket for every cause that may come my way. I told her all she would need to pay was whatever my costs were, which I guessed to be about five dollars. That was acceptable to her, and she gave me her address.

If the pictures were for the mother only, I would have quoted something more. But since it was for a non-profit organization, just covering my costs was good enough.

But this sent me scrambling searching through my photography forums to see what others were doing for charges for services. I guess it is time for me to start thinking about this. I’ll report more about that information in a later pixelation.

So I found four pictures and put them on a CD and went down to CVS. All in all, CVS for the most part does OK with the pictures once I tell them not to color manage and not to resize since I had already taken care of that with CS2.

After an hour, I picked up the pictures and they looked fine. I bought a mailer as well. The total for all of this was just under three dollars. I went home and found a business template in Microsoft Word to use as a cover letter for the pictures. I told the mother the charge was three dollars and I also included a self-addressed but unstamped return envelope for her convenience.

I also asked her in the letter to inform the newsletter folks that I would like recognition for the picture, and for her or the newsletter folks to mail me a copy of the newsletter with the picture for my files. This way I can see if they did what I asked. I will start building a file of my publications. If I have to go back in time for any reason, I will have a copy of what was published, especially if someone asks for my credentials.

I realized that I need to come up with some sort of logo for my operation. Imagine that! I want to call myself fotofinish fotography. I had trouble deciding if I wanted to spell the word “photography” with a “p” or an “f” to be consistent with “fotofinish”. What do you think? I also have to come up with some sort of design as well. This is the fun part! Anyone have any ideas?

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