Monday, December 29, 2008

post processing - picnik

Any post processing junkies out there?

I'm always checking out different editing tools and programs. I used the 30-day free trial of Lightroom and loved it, but the program is $300...too much money for my SAHM uses & needs. I've been using the free version of Picnik lately and, until today, hadn't really branched out into its "creative" tools.

I thought I'd share the finished products in case there are others who are looking for a post processing program. In the "creative" section of Picnik, there are a variety of actions and each is represented by a little frog who has been processed with that action. Not very attractive. But some of the actions actually do look nice when applied to people!

After some failed attempts to get some new closeups of M, I used an old photo of him and then took some of myself. Yes, go ahead and call me a desperate dork but, if you do, you have to come model for me! I am really glad I did this though because it ended up being good practice. M and I have different skin tones and the editing/actions seemed to affect us a little differently.

1960's: Love those rounded corners. Notice the orange-ish cast to his face.
CINEMASCOPE: This action seems to squish the subject when it adds the black bars.

CINEMASCOPE: The "black bar squish" isn't as noticeable in my photo.
ORTON-ISH: I think this pic looks really freaky since my eyes look different colors and my pupil is so severe! If I didn't know myself, this is the kind of photo that would give me bad dreams. I DO like the way Orton-ish seems to smooth out hair and face. It gives a soft look to the subject.

DUO-TONE: This may look like B&W but is actually an action that allows you to pick two colors for the editing. I ended up choosing dark blue and light gray but, for a moment, I was looking quite lime green!

HOLGA-ISH: While it looks like a huge square spot-light is on my face, this action actually changed where the light was hitting my face. I don't like it on this photo, but Holga-ish would look cool if your entire subject was in the highlighted area. I think LOMO-ISH does the same thing except in color.

I tried both 1960s and CROSS PROCESS on mine and the colors were funky...I think the blue background in M's photo kind of neutralized the orange-brownish cast of those actions...but not totally sure. Other things: Every time I use Picnik, I have major slow-down issues. At first, I can edit quickly but after about 3 pics, my computer starts grinding like crazy and I can finish mowing the lawn before an action finishes applying itself. This, however, could be an issue with my computer. Also, the FREE Picnik only allows you to upload 5 photos at a time.

If you have an editing tool that you recommend, feel free to share!


dan and rachel said...

beautiful photos. my friend who's a photographer says picassa is great. and it's free. she also uses photoshop.

Jenna said...

Um, no advice here, but I LOVE the 1960's picture of Matthew. I'm not sure why.

I agree about that one picture of is really freaky. I mean, you look great, just dead! :) Totally CSI or something!!!!!

I've been praying for you this Christmas season! I've been MIA blog-wise a bit lately (just enjoying life), but wanted to let you know I had not forgotten you!

Tish said...

@Jenna, yes! i totally thought i looked dead, too! made me hum the twilight zone music!

Rebecca of "China, Baby!" said...

Hey cool pics chica! Love them!!! I haven't used Lightroom yet. Not ready to jump in to that whole thing... just happy with my Picnik. I did get the premium version and like it a lot!

My favorite effects are Orton-ish and I do love Cinemascope too. :) When I use Orton-ish I usually take the fade up a little so it's not quite as soft as the default.

Beautiful pics!!!!

Love you!

Sherry said...

I wish I knew the cool sites to check out. I just come to your blog to find them... hehe! BTW I LOVE Baby M's Christmas photos! Red looks good on him:)

And yes missy supplements (prenatal vit) twice a day for 10 months helped the hair grow rapidly. However I gotta say since my new diet (started begining of Nov) I have taken nothing but I think my hair is growing out much better naturally? Hmmm... I guess cutting out large amounts of sugar does make a difference in something?? :)

Lisa said...

Cool!! I love the cinemascope for both you and M! Your eyes look incredible in those pics! I suspect if I took a close up of me, it would be all nostril or tonsils. lol
I wish I had a fun tip to share...but I can say that having watched your progress now for a time, your skills are growing & growing! I'm impressed!

Tish said...

@lisa - i will say that the original photos were NOT attractive. you could see every blemish, wrinkle, bloodvessel in my eye, etc. just another great reason to love post processing!!!

Rebecca of "China, Baby!" said...

I forgot to tell you, if you're using Cinemascope in Picnik you can uncheck "letterbox my photo" and it gets rid of the black bars. Just applies the grain & effect but no "squish" (I don't think it actually compresses the picture, just picks the center and blacks out the top & bottom, but I could be wrong).

Another tip, if you go to my blog you'll see pics of our Christmas Eve party. I took those with the 50mm 1.4 and no flash. VERY LOW LIGHTING in the house. The exposure turned out ok, but the pics had a yellow cast to them because of the lighting in the house (even with the WB set to Tungsten). I fixed that by adjusting the temperature in Picnik. The only thing I had to do was bring the temp. down and it really helped the photos look better.


Colleen said...

I love picnik and use it all the time. I joined it a while back it's easy to use. Works for me LOL
The pictures are great! Happy New Year!!! Hope 2009 is a fantasic year for you and your family!!!

Andrea said...

I am a Picnik'r.
My friend turned me on to it.

I like it because I can erase my wrinkles.

I like the freaky picture....does that make me freaky?????????


Anonymous said...

Um, look at pretty much ALL of my photos. I'm clearly a Picnik addict. You can do a lot with it like, for example, I took my friend's wedding photo and made it b&W or Sepia but kept her bouquet of gorgeous red roses in full color. REALLY COOL EFFECT!

Your pictures are, as always, incredible. I wish I had an adorable subject like M to photograph, but I have to settle for my fur-babies for now. I don't feel bad about the self-portraits. I do the same.