In Case You Missed It Photoshop is an invaluable tool for all Lightroom users, and in this class Scott Kelbyteaches you the most important Photoshop techniques you’ll need to know to get the most out of it. Starting off with the basics of moving between Lightroom and Photoshop, Scott moves on to covering the fundamentals of working with selections and layers, and then builds up from there using various projects to demonstrate how it all comes together. Through the class you’ll learn how to remove distractions, how to blend layers with layer masks, how to work with high contrast images, the fundamentals of portrait retouching, how to get started with compositing, and how to deal with all kinds of problems you might encounter in your photographs. By the end of the class you’ll realize that Photoshop is not that hard when you focus on just the techniques you can’t do inside of Lightroom.
A Bit About Me: My name is Eric Van Nynatten and I am a photographer based in New York City.
I grew up in Brazil and frequently moved around across the country, which allowed me and my siblings to experience life in a way few others get the chance to.
We were accustomed to being transplanted every couple of months to a new city, a new neighborhood, being introduced to new people and new food. Looking back, I think that the constant change in scenery and environment I was exposed to while growing up contributed to my ongoing desire to explore and photograph new people and places.
The Gear I Use: Nowadays I shoot primarily with Sony mirrorless cameras, which I chose for their lightweight design and full-frame sensors, my primary one being the A7rii with a 55mm Zeiss 1.8 lens.
I also shoot a lot using my iPhone. I find that if the camera is cumbersome, you will leave it at home more often and miss incredible photo opportunities, so the lighter the better.
A Bit About My Process: One of my favorite pastimes as a kid was drawing and painting together with my siblings. I could spend hours trying to capture the mood of a scene that I had had imprinted in my mind from a new beach I had been to or a movie I had recently seen, trying very hard to perfect the colors and lighting on a single piece.
Even after picking up a camera, I continued to apply the same effort when photographing, always making sure I was capturing the best light and colors the scene had to offer, be it a cityscape or portrait.
In my photography I always like to approach the scene as if I were shooting a live-action film, always trying to capture a cinematic quality to it, from the composition of the scene to the actions of the people.
When shooting cityscapes or street scenes I’ll often wait quite a while for a shot to line up. Of course, most everything doesn’t align the way I want it, so patience and timing is essential, including being able to walk away from a scene to move on to another when it isn’t working.
I like to imagine the millions of beautiful scenes that go un-photographed every second all over the world. It gets me out and about to try to capture at least a couple of them.
I enjoy shooting the most during uncomfortable hours. It could be just before dawn, during a thunderstorm or blizzard.
To me, the experience of observing those moments in person, capturing a bit of the beauty and excitement on camera, and making sure the finished image transmits a small percentage of that magic to the viewer on the other side is probably the best part about what I do. In fact, It’s probably the sole reason why I do it.
Hello one and all, and thanks for dropping by again for #HybridDaveTuesdays on #TravelTuesday here at Scott Kelby’s Photoshop Insider. I’m Dave Williams and I’m here once a week to share something with you from the world of Photography and Retouching, and this week it’s a little note on noise in your images and using the Reduce Noise Filter. Let’s get going!
So, last week I told you all that I was in Tromsø, Norway, and despite the -12 celsius conditions and occasional blizzard I persevered and got some awesome nights of Aurora and had some stunning views before me through the fjords and snow blanketed terrain. One image in particular though, the view from my hotel, was the inspiration for this post. Here it is:-
This was a snapshot caught right at the start of the day before a long drive north. The light was very low, the ISO was very high, and the grain in the image is testament to that. For me the most noticeable noise is up in the snow around the mountain to the right. So sometimes it’s good to leave the noise there, it’s quite a good characteristic to have, but often in the world of commercial photography it’s just not acceptable.
The Reduce Noise Filter
Filter > Noise > Reduce Noise
This tool has been hanging around in Photoshop for a while. It’s generally pretty good but it’s worth noting the name. It’s called the Reduce Noise Filter, not the Remove Noise Filter. The reason I point this out is because it’s pretty hard to remove the noise in an image without losing detail. This is because Photoshop is taking a look at an area of the image and trying to determine which pixels don’t fit, then replacing them with an average of the surrounding pixels. Make sense? So if I have a 9×9 grid with a white pixel in the centre and black pixels surrounding the edges, the noise filter will notice that the white pixel is the one which is out of place and stick a black pixel there. What this does on a larger scale is pretty catastrophic if you think about it. We invested in an awesome camera which we use to shoot RAW, capturing the precise colour and tone of each individual pixel, then we stick it through a noise reduction process which changes each one of those pixels based on it’s neighbour and spews out an average which it’s decided works better. That’s what you need to have in the back of your mind when you use noise reduction, along with this:-
“Nobody ever threw away a photo of their relative, their wedding, their partner, or their cat because it was noisy.”
-Hybrid Dave, 2017
So let’s break it down. One type of noise that the Reduce Noise Filter can deal with is Color (I think that means Colour) noise. This type of noise is red, blue and green dots scattered across your image, often in the form of splodges rather than individual pixels, but it could be either.
When using this filter it’s best to reset the sliders to zero each time to start off, thereby effectively hitting the reset button on the filter and seeing the preview with no filter applied.
Back to the Color Noise, with the slider at zero give it gentle progress to the right until the color noise starts to blend with the rest of the image. Be careful not to slide too far!
Luminance Noise is next up on the list here. Unlike Color Noise, Luminance Noise is made up of dots which are grayscale, anywhere between white and black. Here’s a closer view from the bottom right of the image showing these dots:-
Removing the Luminance Noise comes as a two part process, with the Preserve Details slider activating once you move the Strength slider. What happens here is you effectively smooth out the image using the Strength slider, then bring the detail back with the Preserve Details slider. With the Strength slider set to zero, slowly move it to the right until you’re happy with the effect it’s had on the Luminance Noise. Once you’re happy here, start increasing the Preserve Details slider to bring back the detail without reintroducing the noise. This is simple to understand, and easy to use once you do understand, but without that prior knowledge of what’s actually going on it can be just a random set of sliders being moved up and down. Let’s move on…
Switching the radial selection from Basic to Advanced will open up the option to apply the noise filter to single channels of colour. It’s the exact same principle as the Color filter, but applied to Red, Green, or Blue only. If you’ve noticed that only one channel needs the filter more than the others it’s a handy tool to have, and it comes with the Strength and Preserve Details sliders right there.
The last thing to look at here is the box entitled Remove JPEG Artefact. This tackles the problem caused by compression in JPEG files. Each time a JPEG is saved the quality gets worse, and it wasn’t great in the first place! This check box will do what it can to reduce the noise caused by the processes a JPEG file is put through in order to try to preserve it from the compression effects.
So that’s my breakdown for you all today on the Reduce Noise Filter right there in Adobe Photoshop. It’a a fairly simple tool, but understanding it will help you to better utilise it, and I hope I’ve helped.
As always, I’d love to see what you’ve made, and I’m on Instagram and Twitter if you want to reach out. Keep an eye on my Instagram story today and tomorrow, I’m currently in the air heading across the pond to New York City to have a little look at how they do Christmas over there!
OK, I know I’m way, way overdue for sharing these images from my trip to Lisbon, but I was on a critical book deadline, and blah, blah, blah I just didn’t get it done until now. Thanks for everybody that asked about them, and that has been so patient as well.
I shared the images, story, and behind-the-scenes shots using Adobe Spark Page. Here’s the link.
After this few days in Lisbon, we flew to Morocco, and I’m building a separate Spark Page for those, and I’ll share those as soon as it’s done. Thanks for letting me share these images with you. :)
“The Grid” has its own commercial spot I’m excited to have a little commercial promo spot for our weekly photography show, ‘The Grid’ and I wanted to share it with you guys. It’s put together by our own Steve Nicolai and Steve wanted to create a clip that showed the fun and personality of the show, I think he did a great job (make sure you watch all the way to the very end).
Without further ado, I present “The Grid” commercial:
I would love, love, love it if you’d share that on your social media. Here’s the link (https://youtu.be/9PFNBndox6s) to the YouTube video for sharing (and my thanks in advance).
That’s it for today – don’t forget to come on back tomorrow for Diamond Dave William’s Tuesday post. :)
Believe it or not, when I first started this gear guide, Gerald Ford was still President, we were watching Happy Days on TV, and we were all driving around in AMC Pacers. Although many things have changed since then (now we’re watching Little House on the Prairie), the wholesome goodness of a carefully selected piece of holiday gear still glistens in the crisp morning air (I have no idea what that actually means).
Anyway, let’s refocus on this year’s list, which is compiled from my own gear, and it’s stuff that I can’t possibly live without, even for a single moment, and I’m hoping to pass that uncomfortable dependence on to you and your loved ones this holiday season.
My Gear guide is in three categories:
Stocking Stuffers But you can use these as actual holiday gifts if you’re not that crazy about the person.
Great Value Gear Stuff that’s a really good deal for the money, and even though it’s not a lot of money, they’ll still totally dig it.
Cha-ching! Stuff you buy for the NBA player on your holiday gift list. This is the stuff that makes them burst into spontaneous tears of joy. Well, at least I would.
Neewer Professional Metal 360 Degree Rotating Panoramic Ballhead Want to make ’em think you spent a bundle? Get ’em this awesome little ballhead, with a quick shoe plate and built-in bubble level. It supports a camera rig up to nearly 18 lbs., and if their camera rig weighs more than 18 lbs., it’s possible they have an entirely different problem that holiday gifts won’t fix. Anyway, believe it or not, it’s just $12.99, which is insanely cheap
The Joby Flash Clamp & Locking Arm It’s kind of like a cheaper, lighter, simpler version of the Manfrotto Magic Arm, with two articulating ball joints so you can position it just how you want (it rotates a full 360° and can pivot 180° side-to-side). It comes with its own flash shoe mount, and you can attach it to all kinds of surfaces (like the back of a chair, a table, a railing, whatever—as long as it isn’t thicker than 2″). At just $39.95, it’s cheaper than it oughta be.
3-Legged Thing QR11-LC Universal L-Bracket The 3 Legged Thing Universal L-Bracket is perfect for the landscape, nature, or outdoor photographer on your gift list who uses a tripod because it lets them change from shooting wide to tall in two-seconds flat. The problem has been that L-Brackets have traditionally been ridiculously expensive—until now. It comes in gray or really bright orange.
Moose Peterson’s New Book: “Takeoff: The Alpha to Zulu of Aviation Photography” How do I know this is the most awesome book ever on aviation photography? Well, (a) I read the reviews on Amazon, and (b) because we worked with Moose to produce this book and he absolutely knocked it out of the park (which is a baseball metaphor, and an aviation metaphor would have been better, but it’s late at night, so we’re going with this). Anyway, if the photographer on your list loves taking photos of planes, this will help them take way better pics from this moment on.
Stuff that’s a really good deal for the money, and even though it’s not a lot of money, they’ll still totally dig it.
Platypod Ultra with Multi Accessory Set This tripod alternative has taken the photography world by storm: It fits in your pocket, you can screw a small ballhead on it, it holds your camera steady as a rock, and you can place it where tripods either aren’t allowed (which sadly is pretty much everywhere these days) or where they can’t fit. Everybody wants a Platypod Ultra. They’ll love you for it. It’s $59, but splurge a little and also get them the Multi Accessory Set (it’s awesome) for an extra $20.
Price: $59 (link) $79 w/Multi Accessory Set (link)
Oben BE-117 Ballhead If you want to get them a quality ballhead, but without paying $300+, check out the Oben BE-117—I love mine, and it works great with a Platypod or a tripod (or anything with a -pod at the end). It’s really well made and compact. They’ll love it.
TetherBlock Arca If your photographer has a home or office studio, chances are they shoot tethered, and if they do, they’ll love the new TetherBlock Arca from Tether Tools. It’s a quick-release plate for their tripod that threads their tethering cable between it and their camera, keeping them from accidentally pulling out the tethering cable during the shoot. It’s so darn clever!
B&H Gift Card This is always a perfect gift because: (a) B&H Photo is the greatest camera store in the world, and (b) whatever the photographer on your gift list wants, B&H has it in stock, ready to ship. They are the magical unicorn of camera stores. Get them a gift card from here and they’ll follow you anywhere.
A Roll of Savage ‘Fashion Gray’ Seamless Paper Everybody needs a great roll of seamless, and if the photographer on your list ever shoots fashion, this is kind of the official “fashion gray” of paper: Savage’s #56 Fashion Gray 107″ wide by 36′ long roll. Your photographer will love you for it, and if you’re a KelbyOne member, B&H Photo will even ship it for free if you order from our Discounts page on the KelbyOne member site.
MagMod Basic Kit This one is for the flash user on your holiday list, and it doesn’t matter which kind of flash (Canon, Nikon, Sony, Yongnuo, Phottix, etc.) they have, this system will work and it’s pretty darn brilliant because it’s all based on magnets. You slide on their MagGrip and now their MagGel or MagGrid just slaps on/off instantly and magnetically. So clever! Your photographer will fall in love with ’em (like I have).
Elgato Thunderbolt 3 Dock This one’s for the MacBook Pro user on your holiday list—it’s a dock with about every possible port you could want to make up for the fact that Apple took most of them away on the MacBook Pro. It has two Thunderbolt 3 ports, a DisplayPort (so you can connect multiple displays), an Ethernet port, three USB 3 ports, and headphone and mic jacks. All this, and it comes in a slim size that connects with just one plug into their laptop. They will super dig it!
WD 4TB My Passport Portable External Hard Drive Everybody needs more photo storage, and WD’s 4-TB My Passport USB 3 portable external hard drive totally rocks at just $120. Think about it—4-TB of storage that fits in the palm of your hand. Crazy! But, it’s a really important, thoughtful gift. You’ll get lots of hugs.
Skylum Luminar Plug-in for Lightroom/ Photoshop This is the hot new effects plug-in that everybody’s talking about, and now Skylum (previously Macphun) has a Windows version as well (and the original Mac version, too). It pretty much does everything, and these guys are on the cutting edge of interface design and effects. Great presets, and it’s the “heir apparent” to the beloved Google Nik Collection. (photo by Kalebra)
Perfectly Clear Complete Plug-In for Lightroom/ Photoshop I don’t use a lot of Photoshop or Lightroom plug-ins, but when I do, I use this one. It uses intelligent image analysis to quickly fix your images. I mainly use it for portrait retouching, and it does an amazingly good job, for a pretty decent price. Totally worth it.
Hoodman HoodLoupe Outdoor Loupe (H30MB or H32MB) This is the latest update of a classic, and this is probably the third or fourth time this has been on my holiday list because it’s such an indispensable tool for any photographer who shoots outdoors in direct light. It covers your entire LCD screen so you can see your images perfectly outdoors (when everybody around you can’t). It’s $89.99 and totally worth it. (There are versions for 3″ screens or Canon’s 3.2″ screens.)
Westcott 43″Apollo Orb Octabox There’s a reason the Westcott 43″ Apollo Orb Octabox is probably the biggest selling light modifier from one of the world’s largest light modifier companies. If your photographer has studio lights, this is a killer gift. Big soft beautiful light, with a quick setup/tear down, and a price that’s right at $129.90 (and if you get it from B&H, they throw in a 40° Fabric Grid, which is normally $69.90 on its own). Hard to beat.
Stuff you buy for the NBA player on your holiday gift list. This is the stuff that makes them burst into spontaneous tears of joy. Well, at least I would.
Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM Lens This is the lens…of the gods. It’s a super wide-angle, but it’s not big and bulky, and it’s really sharp, and it’s mega awesome, and your photographer will dedicate his or her life to somehow paying you back for this life-changing, photo-making, love-taking gift. I take mine pretty much everywhere, and I love it so. At $2099, this is why this category is called “Cha-Ching.”
Nikon D850 DSLR Camera Body I had to include this one because I haven’t talked to a Nikon shooter who doesn’t think this isn’t the greatest camera body Nikon’s ever made. They’re literally over the moon about this one. (I’m not a Nikon shooter myself but based on the specs, and reactions from shooters I’ve talked with, this body is the real deal for the Nikon shooter on your list.) It has a 45.7-megapixel sensor; it does 4K; and it, well, pretty much does everything. It oughta—it’s $3,296.95 at B&H. Give them this and your photographer will accept a marriage proposal, or at the very least, they’ll move in with you.
Drobo 5D3 5-Bay Thunderbolt Enclosure The Drobo 5D3 is a photo storage device for pros (or pro-quality photographers, or anyone really serious about keeping their images safe). I’ve been using this one for over a year and it’s been awesome (and flawless). I’d given up on Drobo years ago, but their new CEO, new designs, new technology, and most importantly, new warranty (two years on the standard 5D3, but up to five years if you splurge on either the Gold or Platinum Edition), changed my mind. Stellar gift and the price is actually great for this robotic safeguard of your images.
DJ I Mavik Pro Drone ( Fly More Combo) If there’s a hotter gift in general out there this season, I’ve yet to find it. Everybody wants a drone (not just photographers), but this is the best one ever made at this price point. It’s the“dream drone,” and you won’t find a Mavik Pro owner who doesn’t think this isn’t the greatest thing since free lm. I would get them the Fly More Combo, which comes with an extra battery and important stuff they’ll actually need. Honestly, it’s a deal for what it does (it flies up to 4+ miles, shoots 12-megapixel photos, comes with its own camera, shoots 4K video, and it’s a freakin’ drone. How awesome is that?).
Canon, Nikon, or Sony Teleconverter This is probably the lowest-price gift under the “Cha-Ching” category, but don’t let that throw you because this is a seriously awesome gift for any photographer who shoots things at a distance—such as sports, aviation, or wildlife— because it gets them 1.4x closer to the action without losing quality. Don’t go with the 2x—stick with the 1.4x so they don’t lose too much light or quality. If your photographer is a Canon shooter, go with the Canon brand; if they’re a Nikon shooter, go with the Nikon brand; and if they use a Sony camera, go with Sony (I’m usually cool with third-party stuff, but not when it comes to teleconverters). A really killer gift without breaking the bank.
This is stuff, from us, that’s cool. I don’t know what else to say.
My Brand-New Book, The Flash Book If you know the photographer on your wish list already owns flash, then this is the book to make them finally fall in love with their flash. I wrote this book, which teaches a system I use for getting fantastic results with flash every time. It’s for anyone who has struggled with flash and isn’t getting the results for which they bought their flash. The book is brand new—printed copies are shipping early December, but the eBook edition is available right now.
Photoshop World Conference 2018 Full Conference Pass Want to blow their mind and give them an experience they’ll be talking about for years? Give the photographer on your gift list a Full Conference Pass to the three-day Photoshop World Conference 2018 early next summer in Orlando, Florida. Get the pass before April 27, 2018, to take advantage of the Early Bird special, and you’ll save $100. And if you’re a KelbyOne Pro member, you’ll save an additional $100 on Early Bird pricing. You’ll have a friend for life. Maybe longer.
Price: $599 (KelbyOne Pro Member Early Bird Pricing) Link
One-Year KelbyOne Pro Membership If you’re already a member, you know firsthand about all the incredible online courses, the online Community, the digital magazines, the webcasts, the discounts, and more. Now you can share all that with a photographer you super dig. It’s only $199 for a full year, with full access to everything! They will devote the rest of their natural life to letting you know how thoughtful, caring, and generous you were to change their life in such a meaningful way. Plus, you’ll just look cool.
Uncovering The Magic Of Yellowstone And Grand Tetons with Rick Sammon Join Rick Sammon and learn how to get the most out of photographing Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. These parks are close together, and a must-see destination for landscape and wildlife photographers. In this class Rick shares his favorite locations within both parks, and teaches you how to prepare for your trip, tips for creating powerful compositions, overcoming exposure challenges, how to shoot time-lapse and HDR, and a host of tips, tricks and techniques for landscape and wildlife photography.