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london 2009 - shaka


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David - great image. How did you tame 2500 with pp? i use it with some fequency.. but get far more noise than you did. thanks. coos


Most of the real 'work' is in the original exposure, if you get that right the post is not much different to any other shot. I convert to BW in CS4:

  1. Don't underexpose
  2. Don't stress about 'blown' highlights on the camera screen
  3. Remove sharpening and noise reduction in C1 when processing
  4. Recover important highlights in C1 - don't worry too much if this makes the shot look a little flat
  5. Use levels in CS4 with masking to bring back higher tones lost when recovering highlights, usually I paint in the levels by erasing the mask with a soft brush at about 25% density
  6. Get good blacks - pull levels up to make the shadows proper shadows
  7. Use a curve to bump contrast if you need it - again you can paint in masking to prevent important detail being blown
  8. reduce to output size and then sharpen if you like - watch the 'grain' while adjusting threshold to see when to stop


With colour, I use selective colour layers with masking to blend out colour noise in important areas like skintones. I can't recommend this approach if you have a lot of images to process as it is very time consuming. You can see some colour ones done with this approach here: late night mix - carmen - a set on Flickr

I think my PP has improved with practice since then - also having a monitor bigger than 13" and colour calibrated is helping :)

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Great shot .

I just spent an hour on your flicker blog.

I love your pictures and wish I could do some half good as yours.

BTW this red hair young woman has an incredible charm.


I put your flickr page on my favorites to show it to my daughter who loves photography.


All the best,


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