Playing with Exif Viewer for Firefox

Tennessee-Titans-Minnesota-Vikings-game. Photo by Sports Illustrated photographer David E. Klutho.

Tennessee-Titans-Minnesota-Vikings-game. Photo by Sports Illustrated photographer David E. Klutho.

Sometimes when I see an interesting photo online I am curious what information is included in the photo’s metadata. Some photos get posted and re-posted by people other than the photographer so you don’t know who took the photo, or where, or with what equipment.  If that information isn’t posted with the photo, I check the metadata to look for it.

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My Hard Drive Crashed (Burned, Drowned)! Where Do I Send It To Get My Data Back?

This laptop burned in a house fire. DriveSavers recovered the data.

This laptop burned in a house fire. DriveSavers recovered the data.

So your hard drive crashes or is damaged in some other way. Where should you send it? The choice is important. If you don’t send it to one of the first rate data-recovery services (expensive as they are), a cut rate company could mess up your drive and make it impossible for a first rate company to retrieve your data.

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Mastering Photoshop: Advanced Color Correction, Part One

 

If you want to master color in Photoshop, Dan Margulis is the best of the best. He is one of the first three persons to be named as a member of the Photoshop Hall of Fame. And the book to get is Professional Photoshop: The Classic Guide to Color Correction (5th Edition). It is well worth finding on the used market (which you can do via my photography store). What Margulis teaches you to do with color is amazing. The before and after images will make your jaw drop.

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Mastering Photoshop & Lightroom: Adobe Camera Raw (ACR)

The Digital Negative, 2nd edition

The Digital Negative, 2nd edition

If you shoot RAW camera files (and you should), this essential book should be at the top of your list. It is far and away the best of the best. You will be amazed at what you can get out of your RAW files. Your images will thank you.

A lot of the quality of your final image will be determined by what you do with your RAW files when you open them in Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) which comes with Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Photoshop Elements, and Adobe Lightroom.

Article posted Nov. 30, 2016. Revised and expanded Dec. 17, 2016.

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Buyer’s Guide: Recommendations For The Best Photography Equipment, Software, Books, Magazines, DVDs, Online Photo Labs and More

I get lots of photo questions and many of them begin with “What is the best . . . .” They usually come from photographers or someone shopping for a photographer.

Here is my list of “best of the best” of articles recommending the best photo gear, software, books, DVDs, calendars, online photo labs, and a whole lot more.

Posted Nov. 19, 2016. Updated Dec. 28, 2016.

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Tutorial: Using Photoshop’s Color Selection Tools

This tutorial will guide you through the basic color selection tools in Photoshop. Other kinds of image editing software will have a different layout, but similar tools. Before you go through this tutorial, read Learning Photoshop Colors – A Color Picker Tutorial. It covers some Photoshop color information that is basic to understanding this tutorial.

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The Nik Collection Is Now Free!

With excellent reviews, the Nik Collection of seven software plugins is highly desired. Discriminating photographers have been buying individual plugins or paying $499 for the whole set. Google bought the Nik Collection and dropped the price for the full collection to $150. Now you can download the whole collection for free. This is great news for everyone who has been wanting this powerful set of software editing tools but has been putting it off due to the price.

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The 3-2-1 Photo Backup Plan

This article has been updated here.

Earlier this week I read about a professional photographer who lost a bunch of photos because they were all on just one external hard drive with no backups. The cost of recovering the photos, if they can be recovered at all, will run between $500 and $5000 depending on the number of photos and the complications involved in the recovery process.

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“How To” Series: Using GPS

Temple Image with GPS coordinates. Click for a larger version.

Temple Image with GPS coordinates. Click for a larger version.

The GPS system is increasingly important to photography. It will help you figure out where you took some of your more obscure photos and help you caption your photos.  More and more photo editors want GPS information for the photos they publish.  A GPS communicator could save your life. This series will help you learn the ins and outs of GPS, plus keep you and your family safe.

Originally posted Jan. 29, 2016. Updated Dec. 29, 2016. This whole series has been revised and re-posted here.

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Using Google Earth to Find the Name of a Mountain (and How to Get GPS Info into Google Earth)

"Mountain in Colorado"

“Mountain in Colorado”

What is the name of this mountain? Photo editors want to know. They like caption information. If you have a distinctive mountain in your photo, “Mountain in Colorado” won’t cut it with your friendly neighborhood photo editor. Here’s how to identify that mountain in Google Earth (and how to get GPS coordinates into Google Earth).

Posted Jan. 26, 2016. Updated Feb. 3, 2017.

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Your Camera Does NOT Capture Reality! (And what to do about it.)

O'Haver Lake, Mt. Ouray, Colorado

O’Haver Lake, Mt. Ouray, Colorado.

You have heard it said a lot, and maybe said it yourself: “This picture doesn’t do it justice.” That is often true and for several reasons. One is that digital cameras do not capture reality. No matter how fancy or inexpensive, digital cameras simply do not capture what your eyes see. That is also true with film cameras. All color photographic films have different color characteristics. Some have better reds, others have better greens or blues. Some are more saturated and others less saturated. But none of them are totally color realistic. Why don’t cameras give you realistic images and what can you do about it?

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The Best Image Editing Software

Adobe Photoshop Elements 13, Adobe Photoshop CC, and Lightroom 5

Adobe Photoshop Elements 13, Adobe Photoshop CC, and Lightroom 5

Your photos will look their very best if you optimize them with high quality image editing software. Short list:

Adobe Photoshop Elements 13, 12, or 11*
Adobe Photoshop CC or CS6*
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC, 6, 5 or 4*

*The software versions listed above include all the versions that use Adobe’s newest “process version”. See the section below on Adobe’s new process version for more information.

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