When to use post processing?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Raizels, Apr 20, 2010.

  1. Raizels

    Raizels TPF Noob!

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    Hi,

    When is post processing used? Sometimes the picture looks better without.

    As a beginner I'm discovering tools to work with but I'm not always sure whn to use which tool.
     
  2. Jon0807

    Jon0807 TPF Noob!

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    I shoot in RAW with complete neutral settings and use PP on just about every photo I intend to keep. But that's just my personal preference. I don't really like how the camera processes photos and I tend to be a control freak when it comes to that.
     
  3. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    #1- Always shoot in RAW.
    Since you will always be shooting in RAW, #2 is easy to guess
    #2- Always use post processing, no matter how small. A slightly tweaked RAW file will still look better than an untouched JPEG.

    If you don't want to edit every single shot, you can shoot in RAW + JPEG and only touch the RAW in post processing if there is something you want to fix. JPEG is very limiting how how much you can correct/fix.
     
  4. Raizels

    Raizels TPF Noob!

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    Do you play around with it or use auto?
     
  5. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Auto setting on the program or on the camera? Auto adjustment doesn't change much. You should learn how to manually tweak all of the settings.
     
  6. Raizels

    Raizels TPF Noob!

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    no, sorry, I should have been more specific. I meant when doing pp (I do it on GIMP) I just press the auto button and the program does it for me :)
     
  7. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I would get comfortable using all of the settings independently of each other. What if you have a picture that needs more contrast after your auto adjustment? Or saturation? You should know how to tweak them, and when to do it.
     
  8. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'm not sure the cameras you work with, Raizels, offer you the option to take RAW images, which are practically only data, to begin with, and not even pictures as such.

    But whoever takes RAW data first, has to put all their pictures through a first stage of post processing, as the data needs to be converted into picture data. And the RAW converter programmes offer you a first choice of things to do to your photos in post, manually, and in the way YOU want them to look like (not the camera manufacturer who put his ideas of an ideal average photo into the pre-settings of the camera when you use the AUTO-mode or the P-mode, or set it to certain parametres).

    When your camera doesn't give you the chance to shoot in RAW, then you still maintain the highest control over what YOUR photo is meant to look like in the end when you learn to manually set your camera instead of relying on the AUTO- or P-settings. With those, you might take a "nice picture", one that you can present "SOOC" (straight out of camera) on here, but that picture will always have followed the ideas of what a "nice picture" has to look like of a technician in the camera manufactory. It will not quite be YOUR photo.

    In my workflow, EACH and EVERY photo that I mean to save undergoes post processing. The tweaks I give the final photo may be totally minor (and yes, I admit I'm happy about each and every photo that - once it's been converted, as I shoot RAW - is so it does no longer require any tweaks in Photoshop, save a bit of Unsharp Mask, maybe), or they may be more, depending on what I want MY photo to look like, and what I expect it to represent.

    Actually, I admire those who are so photoshop savvy that they can give atmospheric nuances to their photography, add emotion to their photos by applying Photoshop, making them extra bright, extra dark, extra this or that. This shows how creative they are about their photography. I wish I had this in me, I wish I could be as creative as some are with regards to their own photography.

    For to my mind, processing one's photos further does not "make bad photos good" (no post processing software CAN do THAT!), but makes each photo more "the photographer's OWN work".
     
  9. Raizels

    Raizels TPF Noob!

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    You're right about my cameras of course. They're pretty basic. As a paralegal, photography is something I do 100% for fun.
    I do enjoy making my photos look better w/ GIMP. I can see I have a whole lot to learn, but it's exciting to see how different an image can look, and I do agree it makes it more "mine". It's like having a virtual darkroom. I'm beginning to see the pictures I take as raw material.

    What kind of camera would offer RAW?
     
  10. Nameless

    Nameless TPF Noob!

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    I shoot in RAW also and will always PP every image I intend to share and keep. Since I am working with a RAW file, sharpening and color enhancements are generally a must and I will add any other processing that is needed.

    Raizels, what kind of camera do you use and we can let you know if you have the RAW option.
     
  11. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I learned through this_thread that apparently the camera (Canon Powershot S90) allows for RAW, even though it is "just" a compact digital camera.
     
  12. Live_free

    Live_free TPF Noob!

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    One when answer about when to edit photos? Always
     

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