Capture One Pro – Low Key

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Continuing my learning curve with Capture One Pro I am amazed at the amount of control over an image I have available. Now at version 11 of this software from Phase One, the software become better with each release while still maintaining incredible speed on my 5-year-old mac.

A quick capture of some images of Tulips bought from the supermarket. Using only window light from the right-hand side and a plain ‘Mocha Brown’ wall with poor light shadows.

The light hitting the background looked wrong, with window light coming in from the right, the background was set back a couple of feet causing the right-hand side of the background to be much darker than the left-hand side. The Tulip was receiving a good light from the window and lit well on the right-hand side. My other problem was the light itself, a cloudy day, but late afternoon and had a yellow tinge.

The images looked ok(ish) in live view and I knew how I wanted the final images to look and knew I would be doing the post-processing to get what I wanted.

Firstly was to correct the white balance, and also reduce the vibrancy of the colours, The greens and pinks were separately lowered in saturation. An adjustment layer was added with a left to right gradient mask, and the exposure lowered to make the left-hand side darker, the colour saturation was also lowered.

A further adjustment layer was added this time with a short gradient from the bottom, to fade out the stem of the tulip by reducing the exposure.

The overall exposure of the image was taken down a touch and an adjustment to the curve to render the background to near black. Finally, a little clarity was added and a further adjustment layer with some slight highlights increased on the tulip.

The before and after images can be seen below.

 

 

Orchid on White

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Trying out some different lighting for an orchid image, I set up a small infinity curve using a Colorama Colorgloss White background which was lit from behind by a single Elinchrom RX4 and softbox.

I used a couple of small white polystyrene discs to bounce a little light back onto the orchid, as per the setup below.

Backlit Orchid setup

The aim was to get good lighting on the orchid, with the background completely white. Even thoughI was shooting at f8, the shallow depth of field with the macro lens required me to stack the images.

The final images were stacks of 10 – 12 images each with the focus point slightly moved. The images were align using Photoshop and then blended into a stack.

For the second image I got in closer which again resulted in a minimal depth of feild.