2 December 2016

Capture One 10 & Laundry in Havana

Posted in: capture one, cuba|

Capture One 10 released

Some great news – just yesterday my favorite RAW processor, Capture One was updated to version 10! I’ve been using Capture One 10 for some time already as I’m in the beta program and I must say I love it! With each release this powerful app becomes even more powerful enlarging the gap between Lightroom.

Capture One 10 review

You can read my full review of Capture One software below, now updated for version 10:

http://hdr-photographer.com/2015/09/capture-one-8-review-or-why-i-said-goodbye-to-lightroom/

New features in Capture One 10

The main features of this update are following:

  • Improved performance – I always loved how fast Capture One was. And you know what? It now became even faster!
  • New 3-phase sharpening tools:
    • “Diffraction correction” – input sharpening that corrects sharpening problems of a lens
    • Regular sharpening – it’s a normal sharpening tool similar to previous versions of Capture One. It still got some enhancements. First, there is new Halo suppression slider that reduces halo artifacts caused by sharpening. Second, sharpening can now be added as a local adjustment so it’s possible to apply different sharpening to different parts of the image, which is great!
    • Output sharpening – you can also apply sharpening specifically for your output recipe (e.g. different for web, for full-size image or for print).
  • Camera Focus tool – although I hardly ever shoot tethered (although this changes as I’m playing with light recently in my small home studio) I think it’s a great feature. You can now adjust focus manually in tethered shooting mode. Both Sony, Nikon, Canon and PhaseOne cameras are supported.
  • Support for compressed RAW file formats like Canon sRAW or Nikon RAW M.
  • Some changes to the default workspace. For example photo browser is now on the right-hand side of the screen.

Laundry in Havana

I always liked colonial architecture and was very happy to see it in Cuba. Although you can generally find it across whole country, in Havana you will the most beautiful and most monumental pieces of it. And the best thing of all is that it’s still used – not only for museums – for hotels, restaurants but also people live there.

Laundry in Havana

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30 November 2016

Cuban woman smoking cigar

Posted in: cuba|

Cuban woman smoking cigar

Today I’d like to share my first image from amazing city of Havana. In my first post from Cuba, I wrote it’s a great city to do some street photography – wherever you look there is something worth photographing – from street artists to colorfully dressed people to the poor fighting for better tomorrow. Photo below shows a traditionally dressed Cuban woman smoking cigar. It’s one of those photos you simply have to take when being in Cuba.

What I really love about this portrait is color – blue doors behind her contrast so well with the reds and oranges of her clothes!

Cuban woman smoking a cigar

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28 November 2016

Sunset in Cienfuegos

Posted in: cuba|

Sunset in Cienfuegos

Even though I found Havana city the most interesting and picturesque place in Cuba (and that’s not surprising I guess), there are a lot more to see there. And before jumping to photos from Havana I would first like to share an image from Cienfuegos – small city around 250 km from Havana.

In the image below you can see Colegio San Lorenzo located in the Jose Marti square. Colorful clouds were exactly behind the building creating some very nice background for it. I hoped for a different car to be in foreground (some American classic would be great) but unfortunately that red Lada didn’t want to move 🙂 And well, it’s a classic vintage car in its own way! Maybe the reason I don’t find it that interesting is that Lada (though different model) was the first car my parents bought when I was a kid so I know it too well 🙂

Sunset in Cienfuegos

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24 November 2016

Back from Cuba

Posted in: cuba|

Recently I was very silent on the blog because I was travelling again and this time I visited island of Cuba. Though it doesn’t offer that many landscape photography opportunities as other destinations I visited recently, it is still great with its colonial architecture, colorful houses, vintage cars, cigars and music everywhere. So this time I focused mostly on travel and street photography and despite the fact I’m no expert in street photography, I still took a few thousand of images. And there are some I really like 🙂

But did I fall in love with Cuba? Well, honestly speaking – no. There are many great things for photographer (like vintage cars I already mentioned) but also too many things reminded me of Poland in 70’s and 80’s (and partly in 90’s as well – even though communism fell in Poland in 1989 transformation didn’t happen in a single hour, it took years) like empty shop shelves, propaganda posters, equality which means everyone is equally poor (apart from few lucky ones of course) and things like that. And I found it difficult to be excited about seeing all this, I was feeling very sad instead…

Anyway below are a few unedited images I took during that trip.

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2 November 2016

Photomatix FX for iPhone is out!

Posted in: photomatix, photomatix fx|

Photomatix FX adjustmentsPhotomatix FX for iPhone

I have some interesting news for you today guys 🙂

At HDRsoft we have just released Photomatix FX for iPhone!

It’s a free and easy to use app which uses powerful prioprietary Photomatix Pro technology to enhance single photos taken with your phone (or ones that are stored in its memory). Additionally it lets you make some basic edits like contrast, brightness, temperature, saturation adjustments, crop and rotation. Once you’re happy with your image, you can easily share it on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or Instagram or save it to your iPhone memory.

Main FeaturesPhotomatix FX home screen

Main features of Photomatix FX app are listed below:

  • It includes 6 photo enhancement effects: ‘Balanced’, ‘Enhanced’, ‘Vibrant’, ‘Painterly’, ‘Surreal’ and ‘Grunge’ that let you achieve any image style – from natural to painterly.
  • After selecting the effect you can apply some adjustments to the image which include: Brightness, Contrast, Saturation, Warmth, Strength, Cropping and Rotation.
  • There is a single paid adjustment, Strength, which lets you control strength of the Effects adjustments. You can get this paid adjustment for 1.99 USD.
  • Of course at any time you can compare your edited image with original photo to see what changes you made.
  • Once you finished editing, the photo can be shared with your friends via Facebook, Flickr, Instagram and Twitter or saved to iPhone memory.

Get Photomatix FX for iPhone

The app is completely free (but it also includes one purchasable adjustment, Strength, at the moment).

You can get it from iOS App Store:

https://hdrsoft.com/fx

28 October 2016

Warm Sunrise Light

Posted in: madeira|

Warm Sunrise Light

Today I would like to share with you HDR image taken during sunrise from Pico do Arieiro, 3rd highest peak of Madeira island. It was beautiful (but very cold!) sunrise with some wonderful light.

Warm Sunrise Light

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24 October 2016

The Layers

Posted in: madeira|

Layers of Rocks

I’m sorry for another very short post, but I’m still very busy in the last few days.

Landscape photos aren’t always about showing wider picture or whole scene. Sometimes it’s good to focus on some details, textures instead. And that’s what I did in this case. This image was taken in a beautiful Ponta de Sao Lourenco in Madeira island. And it’s so different from another image I took there! Instead of showing whole scene I chose just a small bit of it and photographed it through tele zoom lens.

And I’m really happy how this one turned out. There are a lot of lines, layers and nice color contrast. And besides that – fantastic textures.

Layers of Rocks

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18 October 2016

Adventure Begins – Artificial Light

Posted in: studio|

Adventure Begins – Artificial Light

For years I’ve been shooting natural light only. As I’m landscaper it isn’t very surprising. There are techniques of using off camera flash to lighten up foreground in landscape photography but I used them very rarely as I never really needed them.

Anyway for a long time I wanted to try to tame artificial light. I already know theory very well. I did a lot of reading and am former 3D graphics programmer so not only do I know how the light ‘behaves’ but I also understand the physics behind it (and also know various maths models describing it). But theory is one thing. Practice is completely different one – all my previous attempts at studio photography were complete failures.

Recently it’s been raining quite a lot so there wasn’t much of good light outside and so I finally was determined to start learning this very difficult type of photography. So I bought some small studio kit – I got 2 lamps, a softbox, several tripods and a background and started shooting (and some other accessories as well). I didn’t want to spend fortune on that so I got gear from Quantuum. It’s not Bowens or Fomei but honestly speaking so far I don’t see any difference (I feel similar to getting first camera ever – at that time it seemed fantastic!).

As soon as the new equipment was delivered to my house, I started experimenting. I spent probably an hour trying to figure out why wireless controller doesn’t work as it was supposed to do. But after I managed to get it work, real fun began.

Here’s one of the first attempts. I know it isn’t perfect… but hey – it was my first photo 🙂

Artificial Light

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