Tag Archives: silver efex pro

POTD: Monochrome with Luminar

Luminar monochrome
Old Ford captured in infrared and processed in Lightroom and Luminar.

Replacing Silver Efex Pro 2 with Luminar

I’ve recently been adopting Skylum Software’s Luminar as a Photoshop plug-in to replace my aging Nik Collection. Don’t get me wrong, I still love Nik, but it’s outdated and I’m not sure where it’s going to end up (yes, I realize it’s been purchased by DXO). With a little practice, I’ve gotten to the point where Luminar is effectively replacing Silver Efex Pro 2 for monochrome conversion work.

With Luminar I’m able to replicate most of my go-to Nik filters, all in a single plug-in application. Luminar also supports Smart Filters, so you can create non-destructive edits if you use Smart Object layers in Photoshop. Instead of having to run multiple plug-ins (usually Silver Efex and Color Efex), I can do everything in a single interface

This image is a digital infrared capture (590nm) that I processed to emulate deep black (830nm) infrared using Luminar.

Save $10 off Luminar with code: JODELL

New Release: Mastering Monochrome (Video Workshop)

Master the art of digital black and white photography
Master the art of digital black and white photography with my new video workshop for Silver Efex Pro 2.

If you missed my online class on digital monochrome conversion using Silver Efex Pro 2 (Nik Collection), you can now download the video workshop. The video workshop includes an illustrated printable PDF notes package for easy reference.

Get Mastering Monochrome with Silver Efex Pro 2 

My Descent into Infrared Photography, Part 3: One Camera, Multiple Looks

Old building, Ashcroft mining town. Super-color infrared image processed to produce "deep black" style.
Old building, Ashcroft mining town. Super-color infrared image processed to produce “deep black” style. With the right tools, you can create many infrared styles from a super-color infrared conversion (590nm).

I’ve been taking lots of infrared images with my converted Nikon 1 V1 camera. It’s not just because I think infrared is cool, but there is a method to the madness. Any time you get a new piece of gear, whether it’s a lens, camera, or accessory, you need to learn it. That means spending some serious time to learn the strengths and weaknesses of your gear. With an infrared camera, I not only need to understand how the camera itself operates, but also how to best process images to get the creative results I desire. Continue reading My Descent into Infrared Photography, Part 3: One Camera, Multiple Looks

Get Out of Your Rut: Tips for Creative Photography

Photography is a combination of technical and artistic techniques. The more techniques you master, the more opportunities you’ll have to create your vision.

Photography combines technical and artistic elements and allows me to express my creativity. Today, just about anyone with a cell phone has a camera on-hand. So how do you go beyond just taking pictures of your food and your cat?

As with all things, you should have a grasp of the basic fundamentals of exposure. Sure, you can put your camera into Program Auto or “Scene” mode, but doing so can sometimes restrict your creativity. Program Auto mode is great when you’re just looking to get snapshots, and it is well-suited for those just starting out to allow the user to concentrate on composition. But at some point, all your photos will start to look the same, and you’ll probably want to expand your horizons. Here are some techniques you can experiment with once you have the basics down. Continue reading Get Out of Your Rut: Tips for Creative Photography

I’m not that tough, really!

Don’t try this effect on your mom (click to enlarge).

Part of being a photographer is finding ways to express your creativity. I thought I’d experiment with a “selfy” shot that I did a while back to give it some more character. Ok, those of you who know me are probably saying, “dude, you don’t need any more character.” But I digress. Let’s have a little fun.

The original shot was done using my Nikon D3s and 105mm f/2.8 AFS G VR Micro-Nikkor lens (a very good portrait lens). I used a single SB-900 Speedlight off-camera on a stand, controlled by the Nikon SU-800 commander. The out of camera result was this:

I used a single off-camera SB-900 speedlight for the original image.

I brought the image into Photoshop, where my goal was to apply plug-ins effects via layers for complete control. Now it was time to get down and dirty! I duplicated the background layer and I used single-image tone-mapping in Nik Software’s HDR Efex Pro 2.

Single-image tone-mapping in HDR Efex Pro 2 creates quite an extreme look.

Yes, this is extreme, but hang on… Continue reading I’m not that tough, really!