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Lightroom for Landscapes – Controlling Color

In Landscapes - Post-Processing, Learning Center by jfischer1 Comment

Without light, there is no photography. So it’s no wonder that when it comes to editing, most people dive into the light first. However, light and color are tied to the hip when it comes to editing in Lightroom. Where in Photoshop you have different blend modes, such as luminosity, that helps decouple these two elements of the image, in Lightroom where one goes, the other isn’t far behind. So understanding these two parallel concepts on their own as well as how they interact is vital to your ability to create …

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Lightroom for Landscapes – Controlling Light

In Landscapes - Post-Processing, Learning Center by jfischer1 Comment

Without light, there is no photography. So it’s no wonder that when it comes to editing, I first start with the light. The human eye can see at least twice the dynamic range as your camera’s sensor, even the best cameras out there no where near the human eye in this regard. Add in a slight misjudgment of exposure settings that need to be corrected, or simply artistic style decisions that you wish to make, being able to successfully edit your RAW files in Lightroom for light correction is the …

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Show and Tell – Barn Burner Vertical

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

As they say, “No plan survives contact with the enemy.” – as so was the 2018 Fall trip to the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and North Carolina. And that enemy in our case was Hurricane Micheal. It’s path up the east coast put it squarely over where my shooting partner and I were planning to be. So a detour into Kentucky was quickly planned on the fly so we would be on the outer edges of it’s influence instead of sitting right under it in a downpour for 2 days. …

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Landscapes 301 – Ultra-wide Compositions

In Landscapes - Fieldwork, Learning Center by jfischer1 Comment

The ultra wide lens is the single most effective tool in the Landscape photographer’s kit to bring a huge swath of earth and sky into a single image. It is also one of the most difficult to use effectively, as it is not forgiving of poor composition skills, demanding more out of the photographer with every shot. Get it right and you’ll be rewarded with a dramatic sweeping view that pulls the viewer in from the near by blade of grass and throw them all the way to the tallest …

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Off the Deep End – How I started Deep Sky Astrophotography

In Astrophotography, General, Learning Center, News, Travel by jfischer2 Comments

My progression in photography started with a desire to spend more time outdoors, in the fresh air of nature and away from a computer screen. After a couple years of exploring the natural landscapes under the light of our nearest star – the sun, I began to explore and work some in the field of wide field astrophotography landscapes, capturing the natural world under the wide open night skies. Experimenting with different focal lengths ranging from the ultra-wide 14mm all the way to 50mm primes on my full frame Canon …

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Photoshop Fundamentals – Understanding Layers

In General - Post Processing, Landscapes - Post-Processing, Learning Center by jfischer1 Comment

Making the jump from Lightroom to Photoshop can be an intimidating proposition.  Much like that first time you switched the camera from Auto all the way to that frightening ‘M’, suddenly you had more tools to work with than you knew what to do with.  No longer was the camera handling everything and making the majority of the decisions for you; now you had to know the correlation between Shutter Speed, Aperture and ISO to make the image you wanted. While Lightroom isn’t exactly the ‘Auto’ of Post Processing workflows, …

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Show and Tell: Old Rock Eclipse

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

St. Olaf’s Kirke, also known as the Old Rock Church in Cranfils Gap, Texas was built in 1886 by Norwegian settlers in the area. Since those days it has become known as one of the most haunted places in the Lone Star State. This reputation however has not kept it from becoming a well known and often visited astrophotography location by area night sky photographers who contact the care takers for permission to shoot on its grounds after dark. As was the case when a friend and fellow photographer friend …

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Landscapes 201 – Composition

In Landscapes - Fieldwork, Learning Center by jfischerLeave a Comment

There are two things that need to come together to achieve a striking Landscape photo.  The first, and ultimately most important is the light. But coming in at a very close second is composition.  You can have the most glorious light filling the scene in front of you, but without a strong composition it is simply just that – light.  It won’t engage the viewer beyond the color, and no amount of editing will fix a bad composition that wasn’t thoroughly considered and thought about while in the field. Composition …

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Show and Tell: Red Rock Milky Way

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

I’m about to break a few hearts, but hopefully also blow a couple minds. This is a composite. Not only is it a composite, the foreground was taken at 5pm, not 5am as it might look. Taking an image that I shot on my way out to Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada on my last day of my 2018 Death Valley trip, and pairing it with a Milky Way exposure I took previously on the trip without a good foreground, I took the best of two photos and …

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Show and Tell: Trails on the Prairie

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

Seeing as one of my most popular articles here in the Learning Center is my ‘Stacking Star Trails in Photoshop CC’ – decided to share this non-stacked single frame star trail to show what can be done with a single exposure – as well as the challenges in capturing them. Where most star trails are shot at around 30-60 seconds per shot and then stacked with either Photoshop of another specialized application such as StarStax, this photo was taken in a single 2100 second exposure… doing the math, that’s 35 …

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Show and Tell: Possum Kingdom Invasion

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“If there’s one thing I know, it’s never to mess with mother nature, mother in-laws and, mother freaking Ukrainians.” – Skinny Pete Storm Chasing – it has become extremely popular in recent years, however it’s also very dangerous, not only to you, but others on the roads as well. Mother Nature is not to be taken lightly when she’s full of anger and fury. For this single reason, I choose not to chase on my own, but instead have formed friendships with a couple of experienced chasers whom I trust. …

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Show and Tell – Artists Palette, Death Valley

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

The for my first major trip of 2018, I set my sights on Death Valley National Park. One of the few places with a good chance of being ‘camping weather’ at the end of February, and a location I had wanted to shoot for some time. Clear skies during the day and partially cloudy skies at night frustrated me much of the time. While the weather wasn’t as cooperative as one might hope, I can’t complain too much either as I think the warmest we ever saw was in the …