08 Jan Making a ‘so-so’ image go POW!
I snapped this photo at a wedding last year and discarded it initially because I had inadvertently set my camera (Nikon D200) image settings to “VIVID” and after capturing this image in horrible low flickering flourescent lighting using no flash, the initial result made little Elle look a little like a circus clown with bright exaggerated red cheeks, overall yellow skin and over dark circles under her eyes. I loved her expression, her beautiful eyes and flower in her hair…so I saved it for a later play session. Luckily, I was using my fabulous 50 mm 1.4 Nikon portrait lens, so all was not completely lost. The image had a nice soft quality to it with very narrow depth of field and at least one of her eyes was in sharp focus.
Using Lightroom 2.0 and some free Onone Software plugins, I applied a glow effect to the image, adjusted the red and pink coloring and desaturated the whole image slightly, decreased the black applied automatically from the glow plugin and then slightly increased the brightness to make sure her eyes popped. The result is this beautifully soft and sweet heirloom photo.