Wednesday, October 12, 2011

How to edit a high contrast image using ACR and CS5 …

A lot of images on sunny days come out of the camera with significant exposure issues. Blocked shadows, blown highlights … that kind of thing. Even the D700 is no guarantee of a fantastic exposure if the image has a slash of sunlight cutting across it.

Here, for example, is an image that is converted by Adobe’s default settings in ACR.


And here is the same image after processing in ACR and CS5.


I think most would agree that this is a more pleasing image. So how does one perform this edit? Well, here is a 24 minute video (shot in two segments, hence the brain fart near the end where I say it is 13 minutes long) describing the process in painful detail.

Cherish this one, as I recorded it in full 4 times … the first three using Hypercam 2 and trying to fix the out of sync audio to no avail (yes, I checked out a half dozen videos on how to fix it and none of them worked.)

The final one was recorded with a trial version of Screen Recorder Gold (hence the watermark top left) and I must say worked beautifully. Much, much better than Hypercam.

The final version was mastered in Sony Vegas Platinum 11, although next time I will try and edit it in SRG …

Please ensure that you open this to full screen (1080p) so that you can see it as close to the original as possible. I am still tweaking the settings, hence this one is not quite a perfect rendering of the final sharpness. But it is pretty good and it certainly demonstrates the relevant techniques.

Enjoy. Or not. As you wish Smile