Hi Steve,

I’m just starting to process my RAWs from the PI. As far as white balance goes...so far I’ve left it at “as shot”. That should mostly be okay, right? As far as all the other post-processing is concerned I go about it just as I would do with the JPEGs? I’ve imported them all to Lightroom with “Auto Tone” enabled. They look okay already. I’m thinking about only tweaking the best shots some more now. I’ve got more than 700 from the PI alone and just the thought of processing them all already gives me a headache...

Akulka
 

 

Hi Akulka –

Yes, for the greater part the auto white balance sensor, especially in natural daylight, does a very good job of capturing the more “accurate” white balance.  White balance sensors have really improved in just the last few years, it’s amazing how the auto WB sensor on my newest $300 point and shoot compact is more accurate in less than ideal lighting conditions than my five year old $8000 professional DSLR.

However, “accurate” may not be the best choice.  Don’t hesitate to experiment with the white balance to “warm” or “cool” the colors to your taste.  This takes some practice to get really good with.

The “auto-toning” sometimes works great, sometimes not so great.  If the images appear correct to you then by all means use them that way.  There’s no need to adjust anything that’s already “right.”  More people spoil their images during post-processing than during the capture.. just because they think they must do something.  So, I think tweaking only the best shots is a great idea.  In fact, this is what I do.  I can’t be bothered with processing all the images I capture.  I use Lightroom to view my work, tag the images (or save them to Quick Collection) I’ll have further interest in, and then I’ll go back at my leisure and work on them individually.  Post-processing should be fun and entertaining.  If you try to do too much, or do them all, it loses its fun very quickly.

BTW -  Your last gallery and this last question gave me a great idea for a learning topic!  Thanks!

Steve
 

Hi Steve,

Got a quick question. I want to put some of the photos of our holiday online for friends and family to see. As I don’t have my own domain, I was wondering if you can recommend a good photo hosting website. If possible, a website that makes it difficult to download the photos, as I don’t want other people to use them. I think some of the images could be used for commercial purposes (only a few, I’m not pretending I’m that great :p). Any ideas?

Is it possible to embed a copyright on the images when you export them from Lightroom?

Please let me know your thoughts on this.

Thanks.

Best regards,

Koen
 

Koen –

This would make a great learning topic.

You’d be surprised how many people think because the image is on the web they’re free to use it without regard to copyright.  I’ve had images stolen on a regular basis and the last time I checked (several years ago) my images were being used without permission in over 600 instances!  Many on professionally built websites for commercial use where web designers just copied them instead of going to a stock agency and paying a fee.  For a person whose livelihood depends on copyright this can be more than annoying.

True story:  Yahoo has an African Grey parrot user group.  I decided to check it out once because I have African Grey parrots.  On their opening page is the flying/attacking African Grey shot of Caesar in black and white.  I joined the user group and asked the guy running it where he got the picture.  He replied he took it!  It has my watermark and is clearly my image.  He took it from my Pbase account.  I called him on it and he stuck with his position.  Giving it some thought, this was only a group of 35 - 40 individuals and they’d never pay for an image anyway.  It was when this happened that I just accepted a certain amount of my work could be written off to theft.

Keep in mind that anyone can “print to screen” (ctrl, print screen) which copies the entire screen to your clipboard.  Then, when you open a new document in Photoshop it will automatically be sized for your clipboard.  You then select “paste” and the entire screen is now in Photoshop.  Crop around the image you want and you have it.  If you can see it on your screen there is nothing you can do to stop someone from taking it.  Nothing.  You can only make it more difficult so others can’t do the “right click” and “save image” easily.

Flickr doesn’t allow right click.  Smugmug protects them as well.  I personally think their fees are too high so I’ve used Pbase for years now.  Since I purchased my own domain I’ve thought of shutting down my Pbase account but I’ve developed other uses for it that I can’t do on my own domain.  When I do the learning topic on photo hosting sites I’ll cover these.

I hope you’ve found this somewhat useful.  I’m sorry more can’t be done to protect your images.  I recommend keeping them as small as possible to discourage use off the web, watermark them, and compress the heck out of them to keep the quality down.  I know this is contrary to showing off your images for best effect.. but this is why I limit my images in the weekly column the way I do.

Take care

Steve

 


Please submit your questions to QandA@Bkkimages.com.  All questions will be answered and most will show up in the weekly column.
 

A Snapshot of Bangkok Images Week in Review

A relatively slow week.  One photography workshop, two bids for product photography, and lots and lots of processing, writing, and administrative work.  I continue to work on the design for my new website.