A Look Behind the Scenes: Post Production

Earlier this week I had the opportunity, along with photographers from the Cleveland Photographic Society, to photograph the Parade of Sail as about 7 tall ships sailed into Cleveland Harbor for the annual Tall Ship Festival.  We were on the Charter boat Holiday and had fantastic access to the tall ships.  The day was rather gray and hazy making for fairly low contrast photos, but with the help of Adobe Photoshop and Nik Software plug-ins, I was able to cleanup and enhance a few photos to something I really liked.  I posted a couple of photos on Facebook and was asked how they originally looked, so here’s the before and after.

Original photo #1

Original photo #1, Sørlandet

 

Enhanced Tall Ship #1

Enhanced Tall Ship #1, Sørlandet

In this first photo I was looking for more of a vintage look, wanted the motorboats out of the photo and wanted to emphasize the haze with the tall ships in the background emerging out of it.

Original Pride of Baltimore

Original Tall Ship #2, Pride of Baltimore

Enhanced Pride of Baltimore

Enhanced Tall Ship #2, Pride of Baltimore

This photo, a ship’s portrait in my mind, was enhanced to bring out the color of the ship, it’s flag, and the sky to give it a painterly portrait look.  As you might also notice, distracting elements were removed from the skyline at the stern of the ship and the tour boat Nautical Queen, which extended under the bowsprit was removed as well.  I decided, as I sank the Nautica Queen, to save the passengers standing on the top deck!  So in the enhanced version, they appear right where they were, but now they are spectators standing on the shore above the new breakwall that I had to construct!

Post production in the age of digital photography can take up a lot of time.  But it’s similar to time taken in the darkroom with traditional photography.  The tools are different and the capabilities multiplied many times over.  Sometimes it can be grueling and frustrating but other times, like this one, it can be fun and rewarding!

 

 

 

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About Kolman Rosenberg

My interest in photography began as a college newspaper and yearbook photographer during the stormy 1960s and 1970s. I was influenced by many of the great photojournalists and documentary photographers such as W. Eugene Smith, Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Gordon Parks, Margaret Bourke-White and other black and white photographers of Life Magazine and the earlier Farm Security Administration. Though many of these photographers documented the horrors of war and the plight of poverty, they also showed me the dignity and adaptability of human beings in their desire to prevail.
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8 Responses to A Look Behind the Scenes: Post Production

  1. Barb Cerrito says:

    Outstanding work Kolman! I love both images.

  2. Janet Kody says:

    thank you for the mini-tutorial……what creative work!!! and happy you saved the passengers!!!!

  3. Ken Phelan says:

    Very impressive work! Thanks for the insight and background story.

  4. Thanks, Kolman. It helps teach amateurs that the photo you “print” is more the vision you had when you took the photo, rather than what it actually looked like.

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