*Everything you need to know about digital photography (well, almost). Two years of tips, tricks and various freebies, revisited.

With my blog’s second anniversary coming up, I wanted to thank everyone that has stopped by, commented and added to the content.  It’s been a fun couple of years and has been far more educational for me than I’d ever thought it would have been.  I wanted to make a list of my more popular posts as well as some that can help some of us who may be just stumbling into the fold.  Any of us who have recently acquired a new camera and may be wanting to learn how to use it to its potential, or are looking to build up a few post processing techniques, I’ve compiled some of the more useful and popular posts below…

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*WILL WORK FOR FUN! Your questions about life, love and photography, answered.

Do you want to know more about a particular technique?  Are you curious about purchasing a particular camera or lens?  Do you ever see an image and wonder “how do they do that?”  Ask away, I will do my best to answer anything you can think of, or at least find someone and direct you to who can.  I enjoy all of the email I get, and do my best to answer each of them as accurately as I’m able.  So, I thought, “why not try and open this up so that everyone can enjoy and benefit?”  As summer comes into focus, I’m finding my time being stretched in quite a few different directions, juggling projects and life, so let me know what you are interested in and I’ll do the leg work.  Hopefully we can all learn something along the way!  Go ahead and drop a comment below, or email me and I will answer them/showcase them as they come in. Read on…

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*Free Bleach Bypass photoshop action.

Bleach Bypassed

Bleach Bypass is a fun way to add contrast and moodiness to an image.  Because of the way it renders luminance, it tends to flatter skin tones in that it will push the highlights a bit which, if controlled, can produce nice, smooth skin.

Used in color film processing where the bleach portion was skipped, resulting in the emulsion retaining the silver and color dye in the process, it produces high contrast images with muted colors.  Digitally, it can be reproduced by layering a black and white duplicate over the color image and adjusting the blend mode in photoshop…

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*Presets! Less talk, more rock! Or, one easy way to streamline your workflow.

Presets, a key to streamlining your workflow. (*using a New York Times Mag Aperture3 preset by Zurli) - image ©tyson robichaud photography2010

Alright alright now.  No matter what your stance is on post processing, love it, hate it, meh, one thing that is hard to deny is that for the average photographer, digital photography requires a bit more time than shooting film on an image by image basis.  Yes, our feedback with digital is instantaneous, yes we are able to immediately adjust on the fly but one thing that has crept into the equation is the amount of time needed after shooting to upload, catalog, tag, process and archive all of your images (not to mention, many of us tend to take quite a few more images per outing now that we get more than 24 exposures a round).  One helpful tool is the use of presets, or actions.  These are a series of repeatable adjustments and instructions applied to your digital file so that you don’t have to manually adjust each and every one individually.  Read on for links, examples and tons of freebies for APERTURE, LIGHTROOM and PHOTOSHOP presets and actions…

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*Exposure 3, third time’s a charm!

Alien Skin's Exposure 3 makes your digital files instantly feel film like. - ©tyson robichaud photography 2010

I have been curious about the Alien Skin Exposure software plugin for Photoshop for a long time.  With the third iteration, Exposure3  has taken their film simulation software even further.  Read on for examples and reviews…

*Authors note: Link to Alien Skin’s Newsletter showing this article here!

To those who’ve come from the newsletter, welcome!!!

 

(March 2012) Now that Exposure 4 has been released, you can read my updated review HERE!

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*Shooting Fireworks

balancing the scene's ambient lighting with a long exposure: ISO100-f/11-6seconds

For those of us in the US, it is getting close to the 4th of July holiday and a fun photo opp.  Capturing fireworks can present some fairly unique challenges, but with a game plan, it can be a lot easier than you think…

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*Free Photoshop Contrast Pop Action!

My lovely friend Kira plays the good sport.

Here is a brief tutorial on how to add a contrasty “look” to just about any picture.  There are sites out there to purchase many of these types of actions, and some of them are well worth the price, but I’ve found that through my years, many other photographers have offered up free advice as I was learning to scrape the surface of Photoshop, which enabled me to gain a deeper understanding of my post processing.  So, in this tradition, I shall try to pay back a bit of that help by offering up this little trick.  I know that many photographers would rather spend their free time taking pictures, not in front of a computer processing them.  I myself find enjoyment on both sides of this coin, but I sure don’t mind being able to quickly automate some of my more “used” techniques.  This is one of them…

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*A thank you to many, or, why I think the internet is cool.

I do feel that you are neat. If you are reading this, it is meant for you.

First, thank you.  To those of you who’ve been visiting, reading and commenting and those who have been linking me to their blogs, articles, allowing me to guest blog for you, re-posting my blog posts, and generally helping each other out, thank you.  If you are here, reading this, I mean you.

The internet is an amazing tool for information gathering.  Sometimes that information can be challenged and in some cases, just downright wrong, but the fact that it is a tool that enables all of us to provide the dialogue, has gone a long way in helping me in a variety of ways.  I wanted to take the opportunity to thank a few of the folks who’ve helped my blog gain a little exposure and hope to be able to turn a few of my new friends onto their sites as well.  Many of the links below may be well known to many of us, others perhaps not, but regardless, I find a lot of value in these sites and hope that others may as well if you don’t already…

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*G-FD’d Up From the Feet Up! (or, how I saved thousands buying FD lenses)

Looking down the barrel…

Recycle, reuse, reshoot.  As long as you don’t mind manually focusing and establishing your exposure, why pay a ton of money when there are so many used, high quality lenses available?  Sure there are many optical and automated benefits to modern lenses, but sometimes, for the money saved, I can deal with the shortcomings of older, out of date lenses.  Using older, “legacy” glass on multiple cameras, either via a proprietary mount or adapter, can provide a fun, reasonably affordable and beneficial experience… Continue reading

*Floating in Photoshop! How to levitate in a photo.

*Wanted to thank everyone who has stopped by to read this post over the last few years. I’ve received quite a few emails and seen links back to this article from many different forums based in many different countries. Thank you! As originally mentioned in the tutorial below, this isn’t a particularly original tactic, but if you put your own spin on it, it can produce some really cool imagery. Okay, on to my original posting, and thank you again for everyone who has stopped by. I’ve been really excited to converse, learn and meet with many of you since I started this blog over three years ago!

Enjoy,

Tyson

This is not an original idea, but so few ideas are anymore. While it may be a well used tactic, it can be very effective. I’ve played around with this technique a few times and it is one that when done decently will almost always get a “wow!” or at least a “huh, wait, what?” It is easy to do as well. It requires Photoshop, or if you are fundamentally against paying $600 for software you can download GIMP. I’ve used Photoshop for this one, so if using GIMP, you will need to translate these steps into GIMP-speak which shouldn’t be too hard.

Okay, our goal is to appear to be floating, or hovering so unless you’re an accomplished zen levitation master, you will need to take two pictures to create the illusion.

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