Fixing a Photo

Lightroom 5: A First Look

It's been a little over a year since we got our hands on Lightroom 4 and now Adobe is fast at work on the new version called Lightroom 5.

The public beta of Lightroom 5 is now available to download and test. Adobe wants the feedback so go ahead and start playing with it. Lightroom is quickly becoming the only photo editing tool I use and the new features might keep me from visiting Photoshop much anymore. Of course I need Photoshop for layers work but just take a look at these new features:

  • Advanced Healing Brush is remarkable and allows customers to heal imperfections and remove distracting elements
  • Upright tool analyzes an image to automatically level horizons and straighten objects like buildings to correct a keystone effect
  • Radial Gradient tool is a Photoshop favorite and creates off-center or multiple vignette effects and now it's in Lightroom
  • Smart Previews allow customers to edit images without needing the original raw file and is seems to be a really great way to share photos while on the go
  • Video slideshow enables customers to combine still images, video clips and music in a creative HD slideshow
  • Upgrades to the Book module enhancing the ability to create, customize and order elegant photo books using a variety of tailored templates

ou can grab the free download here and use it for a few months until it expires.

Repix: A Fun Photo App for iPhone and iPad

I'm not one of those photographers who gets all high and mighty about retouching photos. I love post-processing and Repix for the iPhone and iPad takes processing and turns it into an art form. 

No more filters! Again, I love filters for the right photo like a little background blur on a portrait, etc. But Repix does away with the filters in favor of brushes to paint in special effects. It's like finger paint blending between the real world and the imagined. If you've ever used the amazing app Paper you know what I'm talking about. Repix, like Paper, gives you a handful of regular brushes for free. If you want more you'll pay for them inside the app. Brush packs are $1.99 or $4.99 for the whole kit and caboodle. Just pay the $5.00 and be done with it. 

Repix still has basic setting tweaks like contrast, brightness, saturation and more, but they're only here for small fixes. If you really want to fix your photo first I'd jump over to SnapSeed or iPhoto for iPad. Both great apps. 

Most of the free brushes felt gimmicky to me but some like Charcoal and Edger added some fun to the stock flower photos they provide. The real magic happens when you start playing with the paid brushes like Daubs or Van Gogh. I really felt like some of my painted photos would look great on my wall, or over a toilet at least. 

Don't worry you're not stuck with your camera roll photos to play with. In fact Repix lets you import photos from Facebook albums, Photo Stream but it won't let you get access to your synced iPhoto albums. That last part was a bummer as I have a synced album called Portfolio filled with my best photos. It would have been nice to bring in that sunset photo and do a little painting. Of course there are all kinds of ways around that like simply adding that photo to Photo Stream or Facebook. I have to think an update will change that limitation soon. 

Repix also lets you share your finished work of art out to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr. It's a fun app that's sure to give some added flare to that butterfly photo. Here's a butterfly photo I shot with a few Repix brush effects added. What do you think?

 

How would you fix this photo?

This is part of my on going series where I stumble across a photo I've taken but haven't yet processed and I want your input. I shot this a few months ago on a bridge in Heidelberg, Germany. It was pouring down rain. I was using my Sony NEX-7. I don't think I've ever processed a rain photo before. 

How would you process or fix this photo?

Photo Fix of the Day

How would you fix this photo? I took this a few days ago on an apple picking adventure with my family. My son was having a blast running around the pumpkin patch. I was trying to keep up with him so I cranked up the ISO just a bit so as to reduce some blurring. I cropped this photo a bit to make sure his face was centered. I was a little disappointed at some of the pumpkins n the foreground in my photo. Anyway, how would you fix this?

Photo Fix of the Day

Here's a photo I took at a local farm this past week. The skies were dramatic all day and at one point I spun around to see these intense rays of sunlight pouring through the clouds. When I first processed the photo the juvenile apple trees in the foreground were very dark so I brought up their exposure quite a bit. I added some clarity to the clouds but other than that I didn't do much. 

How would you improve this photo? I thought maybe some cropping would have been in order but I opted not to. What do you think?

I shot this with a Sony NEX-7 using the kit lens at 21mm, f/8, ISO 100.

Fixing a Photo Session

Last week I posted of the NYC skyline and I asked you to help me fix it further. I mean I already ran it through Lightroom but I knew it needed more help. You gave me some great suggestions. Here are just a few from both this blog and Google+:

These are great suggestions. I tried to put them to the test in this screen cast.

And finally here are the two final photos. What do you think?