Trick Photography and Special Effects

Trick Photography And Special Effects

Have you ever looked at professional trick photos and wondered why you are not able to get the same fantastic results from your photography? Well believe it or not, there are just a few easy tricks that you have to master in order to start taking photographs that will show the SAME level of amazing quality that professional photographers show! You actually do not need professional, expensive equipment to get that same amazing feel that great trick photos do; all that it takes is Knowledge. You will also learn how to improve your regular photography as well; your overall photographic knowledge will increase as a result of what you've learned! Normally it takes years to move from amateur to professional photographer, but with the skills that you will learn, you don't have to stay stuck in the amateur stage; you can move the professional stage very quickly! Read more...

Trick Photography And Special Effects Summary


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Using Plug-ins To Add Impact To Yourphotos

In this chapter, we look at nine plug-ins that can either make your tasks easier and quicker to do or can do them better than you can do with the features found in Photoshop 7. Several plug-ins covered make it a snap to complete basic image correction. Grain Surgery does an excellent job of removing the dreaded digital noise from images. Convert to B&W Pro makes it easy and fun to make black and white images from color images. You discover how to transform a digital photo into a painterly image by using buZZ.Pro 2.0 and how to use a pen tablet to selectively paint photographic effects on your digital photos. The last technique covers a few special effects plug-ins that can be useful to photographers.

Images in the Digital Domain

To see what I mean, examine Figure 1.2. Many photographers will recognize the traditional photographic effects used to create that image. (Bear with me for a moment if you are not steeped in photographic technical minutiae.) The sun image appears to have a halo caused by lens flare with the telephoto or zoom lens used to take the picture. The odd flag colors could be produced by partially exposing transparency film during development, a technique which reverses some colors to produce an effect called solarization. The rich colors were a direct result of the photographer's choice of a film stock known for vivid colors. And, of course, the flag and buildings appear compressed in space because that's what telephoto lenses do.

Catching fast-moving subjects

Using slower shutter speeds creates colorful blurs of moving lights or sparks. Faster shutter speeds freeze the image and capture it as-is. For sports shots or any shots where there is movement, you have a couple options i Pan the action. Set the shutter speed to J oth of a second or slower and move the camera to follow the motion of the subject. In other words, keep the subject in the same spot in the viewfinder. This technique keeps the subject sharp and blurs the background, enhancing the feeling of motion.

Using the Camera RAW Plug-In

Photoshop's Camera RAW plug-in lets you manipulate many of the settings you can control within your camera. I'm using the Nikon D70 as an example here. Your camera probably has similar RAW file settings that can be worked with. Here are some of the most common attributes you can change. This is an overview only. Check your Photoshop Help files for more detailed information on using these controls. I'll also be providing you with information on color correction, exposure compensation, saturation, and other parameters in later chapters of this book. I'll address these topics with respect to Photoshop CS, but the same concepts apply to the manipulations you can make within the Camera RAW plug-in.

Taking advantage of raw format

Some digital SLRs underexpose photos by about one f-stop when shooting in raw mode. That's by design it prevents you from blowing out parts of the image (that is, overexposing certain parts of the image so no usable image data emerges). Such underexposure saves you from ending up with (say) unusable pure white as part of a sky. You could deal with extremes of exposure by using exposure compensation (if your camera has that feature) or you could use Camera Raw to adjust the exposure after you shoot and probably get better results. Keep in mind that it's often easier to compensate for underexposed areas than overexposed areas.

Figure 6.40. You'll end up with an extended dynamic range photo like this one.

Prepare to take two or three photos at different exposure times. You should vary the shutter speed, rather than the lens opening, because changing the aperture will modify the depth-of-field and may change the apparent size of some components of the photo, such as points of light. If your camera has a bracketing command, you can use that to change the shutter speed between shots only if your camera allows relatively large exposure increments, such as 1 EV between bracketed shots. Generally, most cameras bracket using smaller 1 2 or 1 3 EV steps that are not suitable for Exposuremerge.

Viewing Information About a Photo

Metadata includes the caption (if there is one), the camera's make and model, resolution, and other data. EXIF is a variation of the JPEG file format (see Chapter 3 for more on formats) and contains information such as your camera's aperture, shutter speed, exposure and other settings.

Removing Camera (EXIF) Metadata

Digitally captured images include camera EXIF data that applications and plug-ins can use to process and correct images, such as autocorrecting distortion or vignetting. However, having made use of the data, you will have occasions when you do not want to impart this data to a client. That's when you discover Photoshop refusing point-blank to edit the metadata categories for Camera Data 1 and Camera Data 2 or to exclude the categories when you come to save the file. Together, the categories can include the make of camera and model, date time when you made the capture, shutter speed, aperture value, ISO speed rating, focal length, lens type, and other data that you may consider too sensitive to divulge.

264 Part V:The Part of Tens

L Mount your digital camera to a sturdy tripod. I always recommend shooting as many of your photos on a tripod as humanly possible. A tripod helps you achieve the sharpest possible photos, especially when you're shooting in low-light conditions and your shutter speed is less than X25 of a second. Look through your viewfinder or LCD and pan the scene from left to right (or top to bottom) to make sure your camera is level. If you see that your panning is a little off, adjust your tripod head to level your camera as best as you can. l Meter the main part of the scene. I recommend using manual shutter-speed, aperture, and white-balance settings. Look at your LCD or view-finder to see how your digital camera is metering the scene. Switch to manual mode, and then set your shutter speed and aperture to match your digital camera's first meter reading of the scene. The idea is to ensure that the exposure is the same for every photo sequence you shoot. Additionally, set your white balance...

What Are Filters?

Figure 8.2 shows a variation on the flag picture used in Chapter 1. There, the intent was to show how Photoshop could duplicate traditional photographic effects. In this illustration, however, you can see what the same image looks like with six different filters applied in a deliberate attempt to create a more highly processed appearance. While Photoshop can duplicate many traditional camera effects, it can go far beyond them, too.


Some filters do their work by finding the edges in your image, then enhancing them in some way. These filters all produce somewhat abstract effects, but if you check out the photography magazines you'll see that they are quite popular with traditional and digital photographers.

No Perfect Lens

Some lenses are designed so they can better work with ultraviolet illumination for scientific purposes, or optimized for close-up photography. The most challenging lens design of all may be the zoom lens, which with a continuous series of focal lengths, is many lenses in one. There are lots of tricks optical magicians can work with, including non-spherical lens surfaces, special coatings, and combinations of lens elements that move in strange ballets to improve your results. There are even lenses that jostle their elements in response to camera movement to stabilize the image when the shutter speed isn't fast enough.

Motion Blur

When we see lines drawn radiating from the back of a car, a cat, or a comic strip character, we instinctively know that the subject is supposed to be in motion. Those lines represent motion blur, which is actually a photographic mistake caused by using a slow shutter speed on a fast subject. The image's subject appears totally or partially blurred against the background because the subject actually traveled some distance during the fraction of a second that the camera shutter was open. In the early days of photography, motion blur was a common occurrence, primarily because shutter speeds were slow, and film sensitivity was not very great. Today, motion blur is unusual, unless the photographer is capturing the subject this way on purpose by using the least sensitive film available or by using a small lens opening and a correspondingly slower shutter. If you want to try to approximate the effect of motion blur, Photoshop gives you a tool that can do it.


Face Off Face Photoshoped Image

Any classic photographic effects can be reproduced or simulated by using new digital tools, such as Photoshop 7. With good techniques, the intent of the original classic photographic effects can be taken even further and doing them digitally often allows more variations, or control over the effect. In this chapter, you find out how to digitally hand-color a black and white image without all the mess and fuss of using photographic paints. Technique 21 shows how you can create a pseduosolarization you may have to read it to learn what it is. Next, you discover how to apply digital texture screen effects to a digital image, such as the screen effects that were used by William Mortensen in the 1920s and 30s. If you did not use a graduated neutral density filter when it was needed when you shot a photograph, you learn a digital technique that may still be able to improve your image. Technique 24 shows how to digitally simulate an infrared film effect, and the last technique shows how you...

Grainy Images

This document iscreatedwith trialversionofCHM2PDFPilot 2.16.100.r the grains of silver in a film, the more sensitive that film is to light, and the better able it is to capture images in reduced lighting or with faster shutter speeds and or smaller lens openings. In the never-ending quest to increase the exposure speed of films, grain has been a frequent byproduct. Given the if you can't beat 'em, join 'em attitude of photographers, grain itself has found a place as a creative tool. Grain can mask defects in a person's face and, like high contrast (which often goes hand-in-hand with grainy pictures) reduces an image to its bare essentials.


Let's not get started on filters, just yet. In traditional photography, filters are handy gadgets you place in front of the camera's lens to produce a variety of effects. These can range from multiple images to split-field colorization (that is, blue on top and reddish on the bottom of an image, or vice versa) to glamour-oriented blur filters. Using third-party add-ons like those from Andromeda or Alien Skin, Photoshop can reproduce virtually any optical effect you can get with glass or gelatin filters, plus hundreds more that are impossible outside the digital realm. If you've used filters with your film camera, and perhaps purchased a set of the Cokin series, you'll love what Photoshop can do.

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