Post-Production – New Workflow

It is about time to add another post about my current post-production workflow. I shared my experience with using “free software” in very details but this was back in 2015 with two smaller updates in early 2016. Now in 2018, many things have changed.

Hardware

Post-production happens now on Apple hardware only. I replaced my windows powered 17″ laptop with a small 13″ MacBook Pro for two reasons. Mobility: The 17″ laptop was so heavy and so large, I couldn’t take it with me. Although, labeled as “Laptop” it’s more a fix desktop solution. Monitor Colours: The large laptop frequently changed monitor colour-settings when attaching an external monitor or using certain programs. Whenever I started to edit photos, I first had to run through the colour calibration process. Annoying.

My 13″ MacBook Pro fits weights almost nothing and fits into any size backpack or bag. Further, no application installed on my mac turns the screen to blueish or reddish and no colour calibration needed.

Software

As much as I want to get rid of using Adobe Subscription, I haven’t found a way around it. Thus, all me editing is still done using Adobe Lightroom.

Workflow

  1. Copying all files from memory cards to the external drive
  2. Importing all files from external drive into Lightroom
  3. Browsing through all newly imported photos and reject them [press X] if I don’t like them.
  4. Delete and remove from disk rejected files [command + delete]
  5. I then go through the remaining photos again and rate them with 3* [I like it] or 5* [I love it].
  6. I crop so that the main object of the photo is into the one of crosses of the thirds. Specially with animals on the move, composing the photo before taking the shot is not really an option.
  7. I then go through the different sections of Lightroom’s control in the right column with particular attention to shift the histogram if necessary and to enhance/balance the colours and to suppress noise. I almost never use additional software like photoshop or affinity photo to edit photos.
  8. Finally, I geo-target the photo using the map and export the edited photos into a temporary folder on the desktop

Organizing and editing the photos of an average output of a photo session [about 1000 shots] takes me up to three hours. Most time consuming task is the selection and rating of the photos though. At the end, I have about a handful photos ready to be published.

Publishing

The 5* rated photos are published in my Flickr account. All new species and interesting close ups of other species are published in my web site Fauna & Flora Photography.

I used to publish frequently in Fauna & Flora Facebook page and on Instagram. Nevertheless, recent events at Facebook have discouraged myself to continue using Facebook and Instagram.


Featured Image

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Close up Great Blue Heron [Ardea herodias], Rapids Park Lachine, (c) KHMuller 2018

Note: I intentionally excluded two subjects which are my current photography gear  and video recording. I will discuss these subjects in a separate post in the near future. I am expecting some significant gear upgrades in the next days which would make any thoughts about my current gear obsolete within days, My video processing workflow is such a mess not worth talking about.

Disclaimer: Products and services of all brands mentioned in this post have been purchased by myself and they are not mentioned here because I recommend them but solely because they currently are part of my workflow.

 

 

Taking Off – Exploring Nik Collection

Browsing around, I stumbled over the Nik Collection and as it is free and from Google, I downloaded  and installed the software immediately. Now, I am the third day playing around with the different filters and I am discovering a complete new world of digital photography.

Taking Off - Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

Please forgive the experimental approach to the post production of this photo.

Back to Process Photos with Lightroom

After having insisted for nearly a year to work on my “cheap” laptop with Ubuntu and various different free image processing applications like GIMP and Raw Therapee, I am back using Adobe’s Lightroom. First, I would like to explain you why I considered Ubuntu a valid approach and then why I gave up and returned to Windows, Lightroom setup. Maybe, my experience with this topic could be of interest for someone else in a similar situation.

Continue reading

Honey Bee (Apis)

Getting Closer

Honey Bee (Apis)

I have originally started with photos of flowers for the Flower Power Project a few years ago. Finally, I am getting more pleased with output, slowly but steady. Lately, I figured out that I should also include some noise reduction during image processing :).

I have stopped using 4000x2667pixel size and will go with 8×10″ or 4000x3200pixels, even if this higher format will not fit on most laptops and tablets. For publishing in my web sites like ploring.com or discoverymexico.com, I use Python to crop and resize the photos anyway so that I get optimal dimensions and file sizes for each device category.

At the moment this is my work flow to get to the final photo. Comments are welcome! :)

Shooting
RAW format
Move files into folder with date and name
Backup to external drive (automatic sync)

Processing – with Lightroom
Review photos and discard low quality
Continue with best variants only
Crop and resize to 10×8
Add tags and geo location (readable with Python?)
Export as TIFF 16pixels/component

Processing – with Photoshop
Resize to 4000×3200 pixels
Adjust basic exposure, tones
Fix unpleasant details
Save as JPEG to Media folder

Finally – Noiseware or Photoshop
Noise Reduction

I am not yet sure, if I should buy Noiseware or stay with Photoshop noise reduction. I will test for a few days.

Las Divas de Montreal

I promised a friend to check out how to publish videos in wordpress blog and here it is. I am sorry about the quality. It has been taken under low sugar level with my mobile phone on a windy day (shaking ;) ).

I take advantage to promote “Las Divas de Montreal”. If you live in Montreal (who doesn’t? THE place to live nowadays) and if you love Mexico (who doesn’t?) you should check out their calendar and don’t miss the next event!

To catch up follow their Facebook page.

And here “Las Divas” of last weekend’s concert in Parc Jean Drapeau:

 

Forest L'île des Sœurs

L’île des Sœurs (Nun’s Island)

L’île des Sœurs (Nun’s Island), Montreal, July 2013:

A long walk around the island along the river. My last visit was not blessed with sun shine and good light. Also, I was still running around with my Lumix pocket camera. But, my trip here was the end of my flower power project and the start to take photos of animals. Hope to be able to revisit and post some more photos, now with my new camera.