|Nik Software Complete Collection on Sale through July 8th!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Nik Software USA is offering the Complete Collection at a substantial discount through July 8th. Save $150 off the Ultimate Collection or $75 off the Lightroom/Aperture Collection. This offer expires at midnight Pacific Time on July 8th, 2012.
If you don't need the full set of plug-ins, you can still save 15% your purchase with coupon code JODELL.
CameraBits announces Photo Mechanic Version 5 Public Beta
CameraBits has just announced a major new version of their powerful image browser, Photo Mechanic. I've been testing the beta version, and it's a significant upgrade from version 4. In this version, you get even more IPTC options, you can view movies, and searches are cached for improved speed.
I whole-heartedly recommend Photo Mechanic as a front-end browser to anyone using Capture NX. It's also a great way to embed metadata into your RAW files directly... something that Aperture and Lightroom don't do.
All registered users of Photo Mechanic 4 can try the free beta of version 5. Learn more here.
Tip of the Month: Shooting into the Sun
|Sunrise over the Badlands|
This HDR image was taken with my Nikon D4 and 16-35mm f/4 AFS VR G Nikkor lens. In order to get this image right for HDR, there were a couple of things I had to do.
- First, when shooting into the sun, stop your lens down all the way to the smallest aperture. In this example, I used f/22. This has the nice side-benefit of creating that cool star pattern in your image.
- Next, align the sun with the lens axis to minimize ghosting and flare. This is especially important when shooting an HDR sequence, as flare is nearly impossible to get rid of.
- If you are shooting HDR, you'll need to use a wide range of exposures to make sure you've captured both the sun rays and some of the shadow detail. For this image, I shot a range of +/- 4EV to get the full sequence. On most Nikons, that would translate to a 9-shot bracket sequence 1EV apart. On the D4, you can do it with five shots 2EV apart.
I tone-mapped the image in HDR Efex Pro, and I intentionally kept the foreground a little dark. After all, we are accustomed to seeing "sun shots" as silhouettes, so I didn't want to make it look too surreal.
Reserve Your Spot for the Texas Birding 2013 Photo Safari
This one of a kind trip includes three days of wildlife photography in professional photo blinds, hands-on instruction, lodging, and home-cooked meals every day.