I spend on average between one to two hours editing a landscape photograph, due to the nature of landscape photography, it is very difficult to produce a perfectly exposed image throughout the scene in camera without the use of a graduated neutral density filter. This therefore means that a large amount of post processing must be done to achieve the same result.
I shoot using a Nikon D800, a camera perfectly suited to landscapes because of its vast dynamic range and superior megapixel count meaning each raw image captures a large amount of detail. The following image I took in Cornwall last year during a storm:
This is the raw file straight from the camera, I took the photograph with the camera on a tripod using a circular polarising filter to enhance the water and the sky. I was happy with the image straight away, however, I knew I could get more detail out of the image with a little post production. After some work, here was my result:
As you can see from the image, I brought out the shadows and corrected the white balance, adding a graduated filter to the sky to make it blend better with the water. I was very happy with the shot, and have been using it on my portfolio and as a background to my business card since I took the picture.
I was intrigued by SleekLens, as it uses photoshop actions in order to process the images. I usually try to avoid actions as I find they limit the amount of control I have over editing the photographs, and I was skeptical as to how much it could make my editing process more efficient. I downloaded the software, and once it installed, I opened up the file in photoshop, and was greeted with a myriad of actions to choose from, all conveniently labeled and easy to find. After some trial and error, I ran the action "ENHANCE Dramatic Sky" and let the software do its magic. After a few seconds, the loading wheel disappeared and my edited image was complete. I played around with a camera raw filter, just to tweak the exposure where the action had overcompensated slightly, and came to this result:
As you can see, the image has a greater amount of depth to it, with the vibrancy of the pebbles contrasting very nicely with the cloudy sky. The whole process cut down my editing time from around two hours a photograph, to not even twenty minutes. Of course, I could have spent much longer tweaking this, correcting that, however, I feel that the image I have is completely useable and I would be more than comfortable using this photograph on my portfolio.
Overall, I am very impressed with SleekLens, and I feel that it would be a fantastic addition to any photographers workflow system, from hobbyists to professionals alike.
To find out more about the workflow system I used, and to see what other great systems SleekLens provide, follow the links below: