Photo Keepers & Rejects

In days of olde (so I was told),

Many photos were discarded because of their poor quality

Much less so today

Technology to the rescue

With current imaging software

Almost anything is possible


“Painting requires skill. Photography is created by the camera, and one cannot fully control what the camera sees. So people take many photographs because several must always be discarded.”

(Igor Babailov – Igor was a painter. Surprise, surprise. 😉 )


The Weigh-In

Old Silk Mill – abandoned since 1957

Taken in almost complete darkness (on-camera flash)


One of the first shots during a four-hour shoot. Still feeling  my way –

Visibility-wise: Don’t have a flashlight? Don’t come in here!

Camera setting-wise

I’m not a flash person so it was a learning experience

Would have done better if I tried again later (smarter by then)

No worry – modern software to the rescue

Here’s the image as captured and two post-processing versions.

Click to see this full screen

Unless you’re my old mentor (no changes PERIOD after capture; he shot slides, wouldn’t touch digital with a 10-foot pole) –

The capture is just the first step

Under normal conditions it may be enough

This dark dungeon wasn’t normal 😦


This image is an example of why shooting in RAW is a good idea.

I had many, many options for exposure improvements.

Here are just a few examples (capture at left) –


In addition to the obvious changes between the original and completed versions, two subtle adjustments were made –

  1. The flash glare in the window was reduced
    1. I used Viveza (it’s for local adjustments)
    2. Not Color Efex (it’s NOT for local adjustments)
  2. Verticals & horizontals were straightened
    1. Used Picture Window Pro’s “Warp” feature
    2. Can easily cause unwanted distortions (scale face)

Many (most) programs offer multiple ways to do these adjustments.

I took the right-hand version into Color Efex Pro 4 for Color & Tonal Contrast adjustments and into Silver Efex Pro 2 for the B&W (sepia) version). I could easily have stopped at the after version above.


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2 thoughts on “Photo Keepers & Rejects

  1. Ed, Thanks for your posts which I read daily and now my wife has subscribed also.
    Could you elaborate a bit about your comment above which states that Viveza is for local adjustments and Color Efex is not for local adjustments?
    Dale Stevenson

    • Dale, Good question.

      I’ve thought about doing a post on exactly that question. Your request made up my mind. Look for it within the next week.

      A quick overview –

      Viveza is all about using control points to make selective local adjustments. Everything revolves around a control point(s) and nothing is (can be) done without one. In turn, the control point(s) affect only selected portions of an image – not everything. To remove the flash glare in the window, a localized problem – this is what control points do.

      Color Efex Pro is global (not local) in nature. For example, consider the CEP B&W filter – you choose that filter and the entire image is converted (not selected portions). In CEP the role of the control point is to inhibit the otherwise global nature of a CEP filter – the CP adjusts the filter’s strength, nothing else. Use of a CP in CEP is optional (vice mandatory in Viveza).

      Viveza control points can control multiple image parameters – Brightness, contrast, hue, structure, ……, etc., but only selected portions of the image.

      CEP control points control ONLY ONE thing – the strength of the filter in the selective region where it’s placed. The rest of the image is changed in accordance with whatever the filter is designed to do and control points play no role there (just in the selected areas).

      Viveza – Primary effects are local in nature
      CEP – Primary effects are global in nature
      There is (can be) some forced overlap between the two.

      Hope this makes sense. I’ll elaborate in the upcoming post.

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