The Process(for this photo)

For the most part, most of my photos are edited with the same process. This particular photo ended up doing a lot better than any other I have posted, and I think part of the reason was that I posted different steps of the edit on my story. 

To start off, I could not have done this edit, or any edit on my own. I try my best to have others look at my work as I edit. By having others look, I am able to fix things that wouldn't have come to mind. 


Camera: Nikon D800

Lens: Nikon 85mm 1.8 @ 2.8

The first step was simple, colors. I always start my edits in Lightroom to take full advantage of the RAW file, although you could also use photoshop. For this photo, I started with my MT001 preset. I wanted to add more blue to contrast her yellow sweater, but not go too far with the teal because it would take away from the contrast in the colors. I brought out some contrast as well. The sky was too blown out for me to fix, so I decided I would get back to it in photoshop. 


The next step is where most of my time went. I retouched the skin, not going to say exactly how, but I will say that it was not using frequency separation. I removed a spot on the bench using the clone stamp tool because it was a little distracting. I also added some bokeh to the right of Nicole to balance out the photo. Elliot mentioned that the bokeh on the right grabbed a lot of his attention and that it would balance the photo better if I added some more on the right. Adding it to the right really balanced out the photo after looking at it. 


For the next step, I fixed the color on the photo. I changed the hue on the yellows to make them a little more orange. This added a little more contrast to the photo against the blues. I also dodged and burned the photo a bit in order to make it look like the light was a little stronger, for a future step. 


The sky was too far gone for me to be able to bring it back out. I decided the best thing to do was to just find another one online and add it in. I added it in, changed the hue to match the other blues on the photo, and then blur it to make it look like it was originally there. After I also added in a little bit of flare on the left for the next step. 


For the flare, I used two different layers. The first was to add a more general glow using a radial gradient. Then, for the second one, I set the same type of layer but more visible, and with a smaller radius. The first layer had a low visibility because it covered part of her face and removed details the more visible it was. 


The final steps were some general adjustments to add in more contrast in the photo. I like photos with heavy contrast, so I added a bit more in. I also added a bit of vignetting and corrected the color last time. The layers I used for these, were hue/saturation, color balance, exposure and curves layers in photoshop.


Final Image. 


Nicole Holder


Pier 7, San Francisco

Fun Drives and Windy Hill

It would be more accurate for me to say that I go out on drives and take photos than that I drive to take photos. I'm fortunate enough to live close to roads with some amazing views. My car may not be the fastest(it isn't bad either), but I do like the feeling I get driving it through the roads and turns. The most accurate description I can give it is the one Tiffany gave me when I asked her if her car was fast, I make it go fast.

My favorite road to go on drives is Skyline Blvd. To get up to SKyline, you first start by driving up highway 9, which is also a fun road to drive on. The main difference between highway 9 and Skyline, other than the uphill on 9, would be that Skyline is more stretched out, making the turns a little more fun.

For this drive, I was hoping the fog would be high enough to look good from Russian Ridge. Unfortunately, the fog was lower than I had expected, so I decided that I would just keep driving and hope for something better. I still managed to capture these couple of photos before the sun came up. The fog was moving quick, but unfortunatly I was to far to get good long exposures. 

I knew Windy Hill is at a bit lower elevation, so I quickly drove over for the sunrise. I had never actually hiked at Windy Hill, but I knew whichever path I chose, I needed to go down. After turning one of the corners I saw the sun and realized I was heading in the right direction. After only a short hike, I found a small patch with an opening that I set myself on to shoot the sun on. 

By being so close to the level of the fog, I was able to capture some rim lighting on it. I captured a small timelapse that unfortunately did not come out the way I wanted it to. I always forget to change my camera to manual focus to prevent it from losing it during the time lapse. Fortunately, I did not take too long of a time lapse, so I was still able to photograph for most of the sunrise. 

I was able to capture the fog waves as they rolled over Palo Alto. 

I walked down a little further as the sunrise came to an end. The clouds quickly lost their color but I did see some sun rays pass over the hills. 

Last photo before I began the long walk back up the hill.


Russian Ridge

Windy Hill


Mood #BayCityHouse

People always turn to art as a release. Sometimes it happens without even noticing, your mood affects your art, negative or positive. At this meet I was spacing out a lot, just had my mind in another place(something I might talk about in a future post). My mood has always been something that has reflected on my art, whether it was drawing, music or photos. 

I had a good time seeing some familiar faces and meeting some new ones. These photos had a different feel than my usual ones, and there were definitely less than normal.

Captured some pelicans and the top of a whale spouting. There was a pod of whats under the golden gate, I wish I were closer to catch a better photo. 

One reason I turned to portraits was because they are able to be taken in all types of weather. Despite the weather being boring for landscapes, I was able to capture some great portraits. The lighting was perfect for some backlit portraits.

A lot of the photos ended up having a dreamy look. They are intense in color and are simple. I realized I did have a telephoto lens in my bag and was able to capture the photo of the boat. 

Even when taking photos with others, I always manage to find time to myself. I have been told and have noticed that I always find time to sit down when shooting with others. Our small group was out of the frame taking photos. 

I did have more photos of Taylor in more golden light, but the sun flare killed them, so I won't post.

Last photo of the day.


Golden Gate Lookout

Marshall's Beach