Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Yet another "Wedding Wednesday"...



And this post has as much to about recovering images that weren't so good to begin with and how using black and white conversion can help salvage them.

They were both taken before I got my hands on a Nikon D3 and my camera at the time (a Nikon D300) really had zero high ISO capability.

If you look at these two images as they downloaded off the memory card they are not all that impressive (and that is being generous), but I knew that before I ever hit the shutter release.

Both were taken in non-ideal situations and I had to figure out what I had to work with at that moment and what I could do in post-processing.

In the first image the bride is standing in the doorway of the church with her dad while mom is behind her adjusting her dress. It's one of those shots that you don't have too much time to think about and certainly no time to fiddle with equipment or the moment will be gone as quickly as it came.

I am standing in a dark entryway facing the door, I can't use a flash to light her, and it is a bright sunny day outside (behind her). If I adjust the exposure for the bride that background is waaaaay blown out, and if I compensate too much for the outside I will end up with a silhouette of the people, so I opted to adjust the exposure between the bride and the bright outdoors behind her.

The exposure gives me some detail in the people and I know I am going to convert it to black and white to get back even more while at the same time keep the bright background from being the focal point of the image (as it is in the original).


In the second image the couple is at the altar and I was presented with several challenges, it was dark and what light we did have came from several different light sources (temperatures) making it difficult to get a correct white balance.

To get the shot (without using flash) I jacked up the ISO, but this added noise to my bad white balance, so things are going from bad to worse.

Black and white to the rescue again, it gave me back more details, overcomes the bad white balance, and the noise simply makes it look like an "old time" black and white.

Noise can be much more easily overcome (or explained away) in black in white than it can in color.

Are they "perfect" images? No, far from it, but it can still end up being a treasured memory for the client.


(click on either image to view larger and in a new window)


These images are over three years old and since then software has greatly improved (as have my editing skills), so assuming they were taken today (but still) with a camera without a high ISO option, we have better noise removal and certainly better black and white conversion tools that would result in a better outcome.

It doesn't change the fact that we should get it right in camera, but sometimes circumstances just don't allow for that, so this could be considered a "fall back" plan.


1 comment:

Miguel Palaviccini said...

Taking away the color really adds to the photo. Interesting and very informative!!!