Tag: processing


Floral Friday

Only one flower today, I’m afraid I’ve been a bit slack with the macros this week. I’ve been busy and I have the Canon 5D4 I need to play with before it goes back. However, spring is almost here and flowers are starting to appear everywhere, so I will be back getting heaps again soon.
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The city of Melbourne is one of my favourite places to photograph. Though I am always trying to find new ways to do it, sometimes, I just you just have to go with it and see what I can get. I am understanding more and more what I want to do with my work, what I want to show.
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The 12 Apostles would have to be one of the most photographed natural wonders in Australia. They are right up there with the Great Barrier Reef and Uluru. Over 2 million visitors a year, not bad for a country that only has 24 million people living in it. When you are there you will find loads of tourist buses arriving from Melbourne filled with overseas visitors who want to see the wonders of the Great Ocean Road and this spot is the main draw card.
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It isn’t a secret that I want to challenge myself more with my photography and I’ve been trying to think of ways to do it. I do have a lot of ideas and I know that I want to start compositing and combining images. I am still not sure how exactly, but I do want to start experimenting. I don’t want to accept the world as it is. So when I was out the other day taking photos I saw this shop front.
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This is an image I took one evening in the city of Melbourne when I was using the Canon 5D Mark IV. It has been raining so it was quite wet. I took this image as I walked through this arcade near St Paul’s Cathedral.

There were a lot of things about the original image that I liked. The walkway at the top of the stairs was free of people, which was unusual as it is often a place that homeless people sleep, it can give them some protection.
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This post is usually done on a Friday, but to be honest, I don’t really have any news. I’m trying to get some articles written and I’ve been away for a few days. I thought perhaps we could just look at what I’ve posted to Instagram for the last week. We will see what happens in the following week.

Here are my Instagram images. If you do follow me on Instagram then you will also know that with each post I give tips on taking photos or processing them.

For those of you who have been editing your photos for some time now should be aware of these terms. However, they are often unknown or confusing to people who are new. So what is destructive and non destructive editing? Let’s see if I can explain it in this mini tutorial.

Simple explanation

Destructive – as you work on your photos you do things in a way that makes it impossible to go back and change anything. If you make a mistake, then you have to start again.

Non Destructive – everything you do on your images can be undone. Nothing is permanent, so if you do make a mistake you can go back and change it.

Working Destructively

It is very easy in Photoshop to work in a destructive way. If you avoid using layers, or continue to flatten your images you start to make it so you can’t undo a previous mistake or process. There are those that think this is fine, and I see people others this way, but it should be avoided.

The image has been processing in a destructive way, you can't see what has been done to it, and therefore can't undo anything.

The image has been processing in a destructive way, you can’t see what has been done to it, and therefore can’t undo anything.

All the processing is done in the one layer. While you can go back into your history to undo things, there is only so far you can go back. If you save the image with the idea of working on it again later, you will have lost all the history. While you continue the work and if you find you missed something in the earlier session it may be impossible to change it. The only option could be starting over again.

Working Non Destructively

There is a way to work so that you can protect or change anything you have done, which is to do your images in a non destructive way. In Photoshop this means working in layers and every adjustment you do is done in a different layer.

All the processes and adjustments to this image are done in separate layers.

All the processes and adjustments to this image are done in separate layers.

While not much editing has been done to the image you can see what was done by looking at the layers. You can turn them on and off to see if they work. If you realise you have forgotten to do something you can go back to it the later and fix the problem.


This program by Adobe is by nature a non destructive editing platform. Everything that is done in it can be undone. It is a great program in this respect.

There you have it, a quick description for what these terms mean. If you have other terms you would like explained, let me know and I will do my best to give you an explanation.


It is good to be back with the Up for Discussion posts, but for the title I have trimmed it down to U4D. It doesn’t take up as much room. I thought I would start with a post on Copyright, you and the law because it seems like a good subject and can never be written about enough.

Recently I had experience, which I will tell you about in a minute, but it brought back the importance of knowing your rights as the owner of your images. It is so important that you learn what the rules are, to protect your work and to also make sure you are not using other images illegally.

My Story

A couple of weeks ago I was sent a message on Facebook to inform me that someone was using one of my images on their page and claiming it was their own. I had a quick look, but thought the processing on it was so bad it couldn’t be mine. The image was of light trails in front of Flinders Street Station. I told the person who let me know I didn’t think it was mine and she showed me the blog post it had come from. So I took another look at the image.

This one, and it was one of mine.


At first I couldn’t see my watermark on the image, but then it stood out so clearly.

I left a comment under the photo saying something about how it was great that she likes doing long exposures, but perhaps she shouldn’t use my image to show that.

I decided to message her and tell her not to steal images. She claimed she hadn’t, that she had taken it. I then told her that the image was mine, it had my watermark on it. She clearly hadn’t seen it, and continued saying it was hers. I also asked what would the chances be of us both taking the same image with the same light trails, exactly the same?

She removed the image from her Facebook page, but continued to say it was hers. When I asked why she removed it she replied that she didn’t like negative comments on her page. I don’t know why she didn’t just remove the comment then.

It has to be said that I continued the discussion and suggested if she was going to be so adamant that the image was hers perhaps she should put it back up, that I would put mine up and we could let people decide for themselves who the image actually belonged to. She declined.

She had been found out and I continue to check her page to see if anymore of my images are there. In this instance my watermark was my saving grace, it was there and recognisable.

It was a good outcome for me, the woman was using my image without my permission, passing it off as her own, and she had done more processing to it. She violated so many copyright laws. She was, more importantly, trying to use my image to promote her own business, so using it for commercial purposes. It was amazing to see it happening.


One of the things that I don’t like about Facebook is how they remove all metadata from images and the original filename. People can remove that themselves, but most people wouldn’t. When FB does that it takes away all your protection and makes it much harder to trace images.

This woman has a history of steeling images, but you can’t trace them, unless you know exactly who took them.

If you are putting photos on Facebook make sure you have them watermarked, and do it in such a way that it is hard for people to remove them.


Protect yourself

In Australia you don’t have to register your images, but you should keep all files that show how you created it. If it comes to a fight to prove copyright if you have the original image and all the files to show how you created it, then you are going to have a better chance.

There are sites available that are meant to help you protect and fight for your copyright. I haven’t looked into it, but an article was recently written for Digital Photography School which you might find interesting, ImageRights – Finding and Pursuing Copyright Infringement of Your Images.

The best way to protect yourself is to know the law and laws around Copyright. In Australia you can go to the website for the Australian Copyright Council. For overseas I found the following which has some great information.

Copyright Fair Use and How it Works for Online Images

How can you breach someone’s copyright

There are so many myths around what is allowed and what isn’t on the internet. The obvious one is “if it is on the internet it must be free”. Of course, that isn’t true.

It is illegal to take someone else’s image, remove the watermark, to work on it and use it for your own purposes. Recently I saw that someone had taken an image from a well known artist, reversed it and then applied textures to it. I am fairly certain if the artist in question saw what this person had done it they would not be happy. You must always get permission, unless otherwise stated.

I found another site, Copyright Agency here in Australia and they had a great page on Copyright Myths, and I think it is something we should all take notice of, read and memorise. It not only tells you what your rights are, but what people are not allowed to do to your images.

Copyright Myths

It seems the old idea, if you change the image by 10% you aren’t breaching copyright, is a definite myth. I know many will say what about that guy in New York who stole the Instagram images and sold them for tons of money, well I don’t know. I have no idea how he got away with what he did.

Be aware

The best thing you can do if to be aware, if you know your rights then you will know when someone breaches  your copyright. Knowledge is protection. So arm yourself with it, and be prepared to fight, if necessary.


The other night I spent the evening in the city walking around the lanes taking some night shots. It was nice to be back in the city talking photos.

The lanes are so different at night and they give you a much different look. Though all the people around the city gets a bit annoying. The city is such a busier place these days than it was a few years ago. We managed to get some shots. Oh yes, I was with a friend.

I’m just going to leave you with the images. I hope you are having a good weekend.

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It has been a crazy couple of weeks with the trip to Tasmania and now I’m trying to settle down and get back into some work.

Dynamic Range Magazine

Of course, that is always going to mean the magazine and getting the next issue ready for you.

The number of subscribers is slowly increasing which is really good. Remember you can subscribe from the shop page.  You can also buy a copy of the magazine there, if you haven’t already.

Recurring payments. It seems that Instagram automatically sets up recurring payments for everyone, I can’t stop it when you subscribe, but I will go through and cancel them for everyone. We will let you know what will happen with your subscriptions.

Digital Photography School

You can find my most recent article in the following link;

Tips for Different Approaches to Architecture Photography

If you enjoy it, please consider sharing it.

New Experiments

I have talked to you about this before, but I’m thinking of doing some tutorials to sell. I get asked all the time about processing images, and I’ve been thinking about doing a series of video tutorials.

Initially I was going to start at the beginning, but then when I thought about that I realised that there is so much out there on that already. Why contribute to the glut of editing tutorials out there. However, it did occur to me that people like the way I edit, so maybe that is what I should concentrate on that.

So thinking on from that I am going to start with one video, and then see how that goes. If it is a flop, there will be no more. However, if people like it, then I will come up with others.  With this new website I can sell them here. I can put it all together in a zip file, so there will be a video tutorial, notes for what is covered to help out later on, and maybe some images for you to work on as well. Will have to think about how to do that.  So will hopefully be a nice package to get.

The next thing is how much to charge.  If you have any thoughts, let me know. I will have to do some research on what others sell theirs for.

Instagram Photos

I haven’t shown the photos from Instagram for a while, but you have seen many of them already. Here are the ones that I may have shown, but have reworked, or others that I haven’t put up here at all.

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