This is another view of the Haida Heritage Centre – this time inside the main entrance hall known as Stlaay Daw Naay – Welcome House. This view is with the main entrance behind me, looking out the front towards the beach and ultimately at the junction of Skidegate Channel and Hecate Strait. This is one of several joined buildings that include the museum, gift shop, café, classrooms, performance house and a carving shed and which collectively make up the Haida Heritage Centre. At the back of this complex is the Parks Canada offices. This pole is, I believe, carved in the early to mid 1800’s and collected from the village of Skedans, which is on Louise Island, just north of the Gwaii Haanas park.
As mentioned yesterday, I have been immersed in learning some new software. That means I have left myself, for two days running, without a lot of time for assembling a blog post. And thus you get the results of some of what has consumed my time.
Sorry about that, in a few months I am sure I will be embarrassed ever to have exposed these edits to the world at large. But, this is not about presenting the perfect image, it’s about a process I am going through as I learn how to get more out of my images. In this case this is a high resolution jpeg – I did not shoot RAW while on holiday trying to conserve card space (I don’t have a portable computer nor was there any other way to move images around during this trip, so had to make do with a total of 32 gig of card space. Which sounds like a lot, except I took +20 gig of photos at the potlatch I was up there to attend).
I watched a lot of the Lightroom 4 training videos – these are basic but very helpful videos for someone who has never used Lightroom before. A few minor irritations – for instance there are some keyboard shortcuts being used that are never explained – the trainer often reverses something they have just shown, but I can never tell how (I need to reverse things I have done, often). Also, there is reference in some of the training videos to others that are not available on the list, and which I could do with watching. And finally, there are two different sources for these videos with different volume levels which is a bit annoying. But, these are small things. I learned a lot, and will be watching some again I am sure.
In addition, I have played a bit with Photomatix Pro. The image on these pages has another exposure that is better for the interior. I thought maybe combining the images or tone-mapping the two of them would be one solution to the poor exposure. But, since they were hand-held this did not work out, with my low level of skill. However, I did try tone-mapping the better of the two exposures. I did this before trying to adjust the image in Lightroom, and was pleased with the result as it brings a lot out of the exposure. However, having used, in Lightroom, the adjustment brush to paint exposure correction onto parts of the original shot, I am more satisfied with that result (top image) than with the tone-mapping.
The top version is the Lightroom edited image, the second shot is the tone-mapped one, the third shot is a quick adjustment in Picasa of the kind I often do for my blog and the bottom is the original exposure without adjustments (other than probably some Lightroom automatic stuff that I have yet to come to terms with, added when I put the watermark on and exported to a smaller file size).
I am impressed with Lightroom, the control it allows, its overall simplicity, some of the Library features like importing from a card and having a backup made automatically on a different drive. I do wonder if I will ever get the editing speed up that I would like to have, but won’t know till I have used it for a few months. I think for some situations, I am going to love the presets, and the ability to make custom ones for batch processing. For instance, I am thinking of all those hundreds (x25!) potlatch photos, taken under artificial light with identical manual exposure, one lens and focal length, each needing a touch of sharpening and a tiny bit of contrast adjustment and so on. I expect that is the ideal set of photos for a batch process. Followed by cropping as needed.
A couple of my regular readers and correspondents have kindly offered to help me with learning how to do these things. They can get themselves ready as I will be knocking at their electronic doors sometime in the near future, once I gain enough fluency to ask my questions in an understandable language, and have some of the basic questions answered for myself.
Canon 5Dii, Nikkor-N (pre-AI) 24mm f2.8 lens, ISO640, 1/1600th, aperture not recorded.