Tips from the master!

On Monday evening of 7th September an almost full house of over 50 members sat in eager anticipation of the evening’s talk by John Gardner. John is a well-known professional photographer and club member and he regularly provides practical sessions on club evenings about the use of lighting. However this evening was to be different as he was giving members the benefit of his knowledge and skills in processing images using Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop.

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A captivated audience for John’s final image

John started by using Lightroom to demonstrate how a few, relatively simple adjustments to an image can make all the difference – IF you know what you are doing, and John certainly does. Using example images of his own and from other people he clearly showed the effect of each adjustment he made, explaining why he was making the adjustment and the various options available. To ensure it was relevant to everybody John used images of landscapes, portraits and buildings. In each case a quite reasonable starting image was given more “life” and impact.

In the second half John moved on to Photoshop, again going through some standard adjustments. However he spent quite some time on processing portraits. A particular problem in processing images of portraits is where you want to improve skin tones and remove blemishes, but you don’t want to end up with no skin texture or a “plastic” feel to the skin. John explained how it could be achieved and everyone saw how effective the treatment was. He finished off with an explanation of how he achieved one of his latest composite images which showed a ballet dancer in full flight with angel wings, in a slight haze created by flour being thrown, against a backdrop of the Milky Way! It may sound complex but it was very effective indeed. Everyone there was very appreciative and took away a whole host of ideas.

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