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on Jun 8, 2011 in Digital Darkroom

What Is The End Game?

A luxury I don’t afford myself in my wildlife photography, I sure do a with my landscape and aviation photography. My posting saying that I shoot now a days not stressing having folks in the photo brought in a whole bunch of emails. This is a perfect example of that shot a year ago at the Reno Air Races. The paint job on this F8F Bearcat “Rare Bear” in the predawn light is simply spectacular! What you see here is finishing all done in ACR and Photoshop, and a simple, single click. The only real trick was getting down and kissing the deck to make the click. That, and seeing the final photograph at the time of making the click and then following through in post.

As you can see though, seeing that final image required looking through a tug, ground crew and stuff. And I mean, a lot of stuff. I started with the big stuff when it comes to a battle plan for finishing in post. The tug on the right was easy, that was simply Content Aware fill. With a fine lasso around it, Photoshop could easily and simply make it go away. The bottom of the ladder on the left took a little more personal attention. With a selection along the wing’s edge to protect it, I used the clone tool to remove the two legs of the ladder. This leaves with the gantry on the wing to deal with.

Can you say Ctrl (Cmd) J? I use this “trick” a helluva lot and it does a killer job. I removed the gantry on the left with the wing on the right. Making a selection with the Lasso Tool of the wing on the right, I simply hit Ctrl(Cmd) J, used the Move Tool to move the selection to the left wing, Ctrl(Cmd) T to flip it horizontally and lay it into place. Create a filled Layer Mask and then with the Brush paint in the new wing section. All of this took less then two minutes to do in post.

You might be saying, “Easy for you” but anyone can do this. The main point is, don’t let the great photos slip by because there is someone in your photo. Don’t get upset and yell at them, just know your tools and make them work for you. That’s what Photoshop for Shooters is all about, seeing the photo and then using what tools you need to finish it so other can enjoy the moment you were so fortunate to experience. Believe me, if I can do it, you can do it!