Fun with Photoshop Actions



August in Thailand and Cambodia

As you can probably tell, I had a thing for Thailand and Cambodia.

These shots were taken in Koh Tao, Bangkok, Sihanoukville in Cambodia, and Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

I was carrying everything I owned in my Jansport Odyssey, a 39-liter King of Backpacks. While other backpacks ripped and fell apart, the Jansport is with me to this day. For the first few months of my travels, it held everything.

This included my:

  • Canon 60D
  • ASUS 14-inch laptop
  • 2-3 changes of clothes
  • My Kodak Zi8
  • An electronic Japanese-English dictionary
  • 2-3 notebooks
  • My travel tripod
  • A poncho & raincover for my backpack
  • And much, much more

It always blew my mind to see people carting around giant body bags and stuffing them into the local tuk tuks.

IMG_0794_CR2 IMG_0803_CR2 IMG_0812_CR2 IMG_0813 IMG_0842_CR2 IMG_0868_CR2 color IMG_0869_CR2 IMG_0884_CR2 color IMG_0898_CR2 IMG_0902_CR2_shotwell IMG_0929_CR2c IMG_0984_CR2c IMG_0987_CR2 IMG_1047 IMG_1167_CR2

Back to Southeast Asia

For certain other reasons, I had decided to remove my current operating system from my laptop and replace it with Ubuntu. This meant transitioning to GIMP and a new work method. There were a few bugs and hassles to overcome: for example, I couldn’t plug my Canon directly into my PC via USB. Ubuntu wouldn’t recognize it, so I had to remove the SD card, put that into my Kodak, then plug that in and manually move the files over.

But, fortunately, Ubuntu’s Shotwell photo manager could read RAW files and I could edit JPG files in GIMP, so that’s how I decided to work for the next however long.

Editing files in GIMP proved to be a good learning experience, since I had to start afresh and teach myself new editing techniques. Using a completely different photo editor with a completely different workflow is a good way to learn new tricks and get yourself out of old habits.

That being said, Shotwell doesn’t have the nearly same functionality as Camera RAW.

In order to pop lights and dark darks, I had to use Shotwell’s built-in slider/histogram, which is similar to the Photoshop levels function. There was a saturation slider and a couple others, but no contrast or any of the other fancy controls that RAW has. Without access to contrast or any of Camera RAW’s fancy features, I ended up sacrificing many lights and darks to achieve some effects.

Inside GIMP it’s possible to access more features, but I didn’t have any experience with it and it took me a while to get the hang of it. While GIMP is an excellent free tool, it’s just not as robust as Photoshop.

130716_0364_1 130718_0444 130721_0476 130721_0480 130721_0483 130722_0493 130722_3570 130723_0496 130723_0497 130723_0505 130724_0506

Wanderlust Strikes Again

Time to hit the road once more.

I can feel the wanderlust in my bones.

These photos are from a road trip to San Francisco.

130623_1607 130623_1613 130623_1618 130623_1626 130623_1640_1 130623_1657 130623_1666 130625_1480 130625_1487 130625_1494 130625_1515 130628_1426

Bring on the Cats

The neighborhood stray cat pack’s been driven away by the apartment building’s renovations.

130616_1376 130616_1384 130616_1389 130616_1401 130616_1410 130616_1422

2013 Moves Along

Peralta Trailhead and some fun with HDR toning,

130309_0989 130309_1011 130309_1020 130309_1023130428_1174 130429_1157 130527_1211 130610_13232 130611_1320 130615_1357 130615_1362

More Crazy Weather

It sleeted for five minutes in Tempe.

130220_0684 130220_0694 130220_0710 130220_0717 130220_0833 130220_0837 130220_0925

For the Love of Rain Part 3

It rains only a few times a year in Tempe, and this was one of those times. The whole weekend was covered in clouds, and down poured more rain in one morning than I’ve seen in almost a year. It was awesome.

These pictures are from Saturday.

130126_0358 130126_0385 130126_0387_1 130126_0420 130126_0490 130126_0511 130126_0525_2 130126_0530 130126_0506

Explorations in HDR Toning

Now begins the next phase of my photographic journey: HDR toning. I’m already a big fan of surrealism and creative photographic effects, and that’s what HDR does best.

These shots were taken around Tempe after Halloween. As you can see, I’m having fun with my new High Definition Range tools.

121103_9914 121103_9917 Untitled_Panorama1 121108_0205 121109_0111121117_9979