Friday, March 19, 2010

Constructive Feedback Friday

Okay, here's the deal with this: iheartfaces is doing Constructive Feedback Friday in which their contributors look at amateur photographers' shots and give them tips on how to advance their editing skills.

Of course, my first reaction was, Where do I sign up?!

The shot I chose to *hopefully* get professional help is this one of Matt on the Walkway. The sun was to my left, thus the overexposure on his sweatshirt, the deep shadows on his neck, and the weak color on his face.

This was taken with a Samsung point-and-shoot, so no way of changing the ISO, shutter speed, etc. Since I don't have my own DSLR yet, I'd really love to learn some more editing techniques to amp my photos. I know a little bit, enough to do some editing here and there, but I'm still not altogether comfortable or skilled with textures and vignettes. I use pse 5.0 right now, but I hope to be using PS in the future.

A note to my regular readers: Because this is Constructive Feedback Friday, some of the comments left on here will be critical. Never fear! I can handle it. Besides, this is how they will help me improve!

UPDATE: I was able to do some editing with this picture. I don't like it at all. His face looks blotchy and the sky is too bright.


Marvelous Mommy said...

I participated and my name is Amy too!! :-)

Here's mine...

Christina said...

Have you ever been to the CoffeeShop website? There are free actions there to download for PSE and Photoshop...It's AWESOME!!
Here's a link:
That link will take you to the Perfect Portrait action where you can smooth out the skin (since you mentioned it bothered you in this pic), create a vignette, among many other things. HTH!

AJ said...

Hi! There are lots of things you can work on with a point and shoot. You can learn about composition and framing and lighting all with a point and shoot. After all, the first camera was a box with a hole in it!

I would definitely look up some tutorials on "finding the light." This will get you on the right track to getting good light in your pictures.

Read your camera manual. Learn it inside and out. You can take fantastic pictures with a little camera phone if you know its limitations and play to its strengths.

Read up on composition. You'll find that this picture breaks several of the "rules." Now rules are made to be broken, but only if you know them first ;). One thing you did right is have his head on the rule of thirds. This would be a stronger composition if you had him looking into the picture, rather than out. It would also be stronger if he were looking at the camera.

All that said, I use PSE5, also :). You can use the coffeeshop actions and the smartcurve plugin. A quick google will locate both of those for you.

And here's a quick edit :).

Have fun!
Amanda J.

Amy said...

Awesomeness. This is exactly what I needed! Many thanks to Christina and AJ for the VERY helpful tips. I am now running off to pse to play with some new textures and actions I just downloaded. :)