Sunday, August 10, 2008

Portrait photography and using actions

I've been asked lately to do a few photoshoots for friends so I thought I should look at bit more into postprocessing portrait type photos. Mostly I've been looking at utilising pre-designed photoshop actions. Actions are simply a series of tasks that you play back on a single file or a batch of files - menu commands, palette options, tool actions, and so on. So rather than spending a age getting the perfect B&W effect you simply load your photo and 'play' an action to do the conversion for you. After the action has been done you can then tweak and adjust the individual layers that it creates to refine the effect to your own taste. The actions I have been using are Michelle Black's basic actions and they are stunning! So photoshoot 1 today with my favorite BaBa Charlotte produced the following types of results:

1. Chocolate BW Tint 2. Modern 3. Vintage Fade 4. Blue BW Tint

1. Epiphany BW 2. Dreamy BW 3. Bon Bon Glaze

1. Michelle's Classic BW 2. Antique 3. Vintage Glaze

Model with photographer (above) has been processed with Michelle's Extreme Bleach Out Glaze action. My favorite few can be seen on my Flickr Stream (thanks for letting me experiment on you Charlotte xxx).

More thoughts on baby photography....
The last few times I've photographed babies they have been very small. With an 8 month old cutie like Charlotte one needs a few more tricks up one's sleave. Peek-a-boo - very effective at getting baby to smile, but pretty difficult if it's just you, enlist the help of someone with a funny face to amuse them unless you are extra good at multitasking. Failing a person, cats are pretty good - babies like cats, just make sure its not in a biting mood. And just make sure they are comfy - I used a big double bed with pillows down the sides. They tend to topple a bit at 8 months!

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