The Power of the Edit

24 02 2013

Avast matey. Yer back perusing my lovely drivel and coloured rectangles, I see. Today I’m showing off the importance of a little brushing up to your images. Or in this case, a good brush up.

Right so, one thing I always notice that new photographers tend to forget is the importance of the edit. So many go to all the effort of getting the lighting spot on, the model looking spectacular and then they upload the very basic file from the camera. I’ll say it now – every photo needs some sort of photo-manipulation. There’s no difference between editing a photograph in a darkroom, or in a bright room at a computer. Except maybe the speed. Oh and cost. I can’t stand photo-manipulation snobs. You don’t get un-produced tracks on great albums, why put your name to unedited images?

I’ve been known to do the very least amount required in my early work, but I find I enjoy editing as much as the actual shoot these days. People go mental when other photographers say ‘I can fix it in the edit’, but to be perfectly honest I sometimes shoot with the post-process in mind.

For example, the recent DollyFrocks shoot is for their summer line. I forgot that with the initial edit, mind you, but I went back and put about 40 minutes into this one:

I changed almost everything – the colour of the sky, the models hair, the manke-up tones – the whole shebang. Truth be told, these are things I couldn’t have controlled. The hair was victim to the wind, the make up was slightly flat and as hard as I tried, the sky refused to go golden at 2pm. I probably could have done the whole thing in less than 40 minutes, but there was a semi-interesting Liam Nesson film on in the background.

Anyway, here’s a before and after.

Having seen them like this (I’ve never put the before and after beside each other before) I think I’ll start keeping a record of my best ones.
While this one might be a tad overcooked, I really like it, so screw you. If anyone wants the process, just leave a comment and I’ll point you in the right direction.

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Rugilė Šilalytė

21 11 2012

Hello again!

It’s been *ages* since I’ve been on here, but I’ve decided to make a long-awaited return, because, well the fan-mail was getting to much to ignore…

Anyway, I’ve been up to loads since you last heard from me, most notably moving from music photography to portraits. To that end, here’s a shoot with the simply fantastic Rugilė, (the best model I’ve worked with yet) in the Phoenix Park. I was also assistant by the fantastic Richard Timmons.

We were blessed with the weather, the sun was glorious and golden even as early as 2pm and the wind died down as soon as we arrived. We found an ideal spot for the three of us to shoot away from the surprisingly large crowd in the park at that hour on a Tuesday. All in all, things were in our favour. That and I’ve really got my head around the whole strobist thing.

Unfortunately Rugilė, is heading to the UK soon, so this was the first and last chance I had to shoot with her.  Personally , I was really impressed with how the shoot went – she posed like a pro and had the patience of a saint throughout.

I used only one strobe, rather than complicate things like I normally do. It meant we depended on the sun as a kicker throughout, but it also allowed us to get some creative glare shots without any major hassle.

Photoshopping was very easy this time. Infact, there was hardly a need for any – the light was perfect and the soft-light that we got from the softbox made for some great glamourous light – no surface blur was required in any of these shots. If anything, the only tweak that was needed was to the colour balance. It was hard to see the exact colours on the back of the camera in the light that day, so when I got home I added a shade of blue and magenta to some of the more sun-drenched shots.

We got some smoke involved too, nothing more than some glycerin, water and food colouring let off in a safe environment behind the model. It looked great with the light coming through it.

Anyway for more, see this LINK. There’s a load more shoots coming in the next few weeks, so stay tuned; same Bat-time, same Bat-channel…





NME, Tubs, new site & more!

20 11 2011

Since we’ve last spoken, or rather, since i’ve last had words with you (you mute dryshite, you) I’ve been selected from over 100,000 photographs to make the last 10 in the reportage category in the 2011 NME photography awards. It was great news for me. I couldn’t believe the e-mail when it came through, really. There’s the image above in all it’s monochrome glory on the lovely NME site. 

Turns out some people were interested in this development. So the Daily Mail got in contact about writing an article about the whole thing and RTE asked for a brief interview. And there I was, last Tuesday, talking to the Daily Mail reporters and Ryan Tubridy about the competition and the results coming out that night.

Sandwiched between Randy Rox and shite songs. Result!

‘Cept the results never came out on time…

They’re due before this weeks magazine hits the shelves, I’m told. Which is just as well. Me nerves are shot waiting to hear the news. I’ve been up every morning refreshing the NME page and checking it last thing before i go to bed. It’s a sad existence, really. But you couldn’t imagine what it’d mean to me. To go to NME and talk to their photographers would be good enough, let alone the Nikon camera that comes as a prize! It’d be phenomenal. In the space of three years to go from a student nurse to a photographer recognised by the NME is just amazing. But I don’t want it to end just there. Nah, I want to go to the top, baby! 😛

Anyway, I’m presuming the results were delayed due to legendary, hero man Danny North leaving the NME to shoot for Q, Kerrang and more with a different media group. So hopefully they get an equally impressive photographer to fill his boots in meeting the winners!

So there y’are.

Well, that’s not all that happened, actually. I was also chosen to have a photograph exhibited at the Ulster Hall, during Belfast Music Week, got selected to photograph new upcoming talent for TV and chosen as one of 12 Irish photographers to exhibit at the HWCH festival. Oh and I’ve updated the website. It’s still www.deadl.ie, cept it’s proper fancy now. And it should run nicely on ipods iphones, Ipads and the like now.

So yeah. A busy few weeks.

But enough about me. How have you been? Did you get that boil seen to in the end?





[Updated] OFWGKTA, the Academy

30 08 2011

Better late than never, eh?

Apologies for the delay, but here are the rest of my choices from OFWGKTA. It got much heavier once we got out of the pit, with Tyler crowd surfing several times, despite being in a cast with a broken foot. The crowd lapped it up – and fell over quite a few times. It was like a punk gig, or something. Terrible day to be a bouncer, I’d imagine. Anyway, enjoy this lot!

l





Flogging Molly, Olympia, 24/8/11

24 08 2011

Flogging Molly were at the Olympia tonight and they were insanely good. I’ve got a helluva lot of work to get through the next few days, so here’s another taster until I get everything sorted!

You can see more here, however:

flickr.com/photos/mehfesto/





OFWGKTA, The Academy, 23/8/2011

23 08 2011

A quick upload for now. Amazing gig. I wasn’t really at the races today though – let some shots slip through my hands! Gah.
Anyway, there’ll be more soon. Sleep now.





Old images found & restored

19 08 2011

This week I was charged with formatting an old hard drive in the house. Thinking I’d the lot I needed from it, I hadn’t checked it in months. After a quick look around I found some from the Kerrang! Relentless Energy tour a few years back. I don’t know how I’d missed editing them the first time, so here they are. A little bit banded and desaturated (such are the problems when you shoot in .jpg!), but otherwise fine. The bands are My Passion, The Blackout and All Time Low. They were as bad as each other musically, but they made for some decent poses at least!

Click to see large, on black.