John Gardner’s Technical Evening

John Gardner’s Technical Evening

Professional Processing Perfection

For me and a lot of our membership, John’s Technical Evenings are an annual highlight. Despite some IT niggles, John clearly explained his processing philosophy and practice. As a highly successful professional, his workflow and post processing are based on a need for speed. Changes to his favourite software, have seen John move over to Lightroom as his primary organising and editing package. 

After an initial download and cull, John explained and demonstrated how he uses Lightroom to bulk name images and use the collections facility to keyword his catalogs. 

Then, using a set of images he had recently shot at Stocksbridge Camera Club, he explained his thinking and methods of using Lightroom’s develop module. A year or so ago Adobe gave Lightroom users the opportunity to reorder the right hand module panel so that each aspect could be moved into the user’s preferred position. Logically he said this was a great development, where speed was of primary concern and one that he particularly appreciates.

Having selected a portrait of Dave, John then carried out a series of adjustments in the basic panel of the Develop Module, tweaking things such as exposure, contrast, highlights and shadows. With an image that was now starting to show character, he illustrated how the adjustment brush was a terrific way of carrying out local adjustments such as dodge, burn and work on eyes, to give even greater impact. He also demonstrated how the Develop Module was an excellent entry to black and white conversion and editing too.

After a quick break, the second half of the evening focussed on finishing images in Photoshop with the aid of adjustment layers, vignettes, blend modes and plug-ins such as Nik filters. John even found time to demonstrate the quick selection tool and how this can work out its own selection. Using this powerful feature, compositing and changing backgrounds can become much more straightforward.

To cover everything that John showed us in a few paragraphs is impossible and I know that I have omitted things he demonstrated. David Kershaw summed it all up when he said  that it was a ‘great evening of instruction’ and where John even found time to critique a member’s ARPS images.

Once again John, thank you very much for a splendid evening. I am quite sure that everyone who heard you at Brookhouse, will have taken away something new.