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Old May 30, 2011, 9:18 PM   #11
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Amy, just wanted you to know that you don't have to have Photoshop in order to edit digital photos. there's no question that PS is the most powerful and capable editor out there, but for the approx. $700 that program costs, I'd rather put that money toward a new lens. I use Photoshop Elements, which costs $99 and is quite capable. (Actually, I bought it as a Black Friday special, for considerably less than $99.) Others use Paint Shop Pro (I think this program might have changed its name recently?). There are also free editing programs that work quite well.

You have the right priorities -- just get out there and shoot photos with the equipment you have!
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Old May 30, 2011, 10:43 PM   #12
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I was going to suggest photoshop elements also. If you have some connection to a school (student, staff, faculty, parent of student etc.) Adobe gives a generous academic discount. That's the only way I can afford to buy Photoshop every few generations. I hate to think about what I'll do once I retire, though. If you have a mac, it comes with iPhoto - I took a look at it and it's not bad. Seems heavy-handed, I'd rather use Elements. On the other hand, I downloaded a trial version of Aperture and really liked it.
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Old May 30, 2011, 10:47 PM   #13
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I just bought Photoshop Elements 9 a few weeks ago from Best Buy for $69.00.

Enjoy your trip to New York!

Laurie
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Old May 31, 2011, 7:43 AM   #14
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There are some good threads in this forum that will give you lots of options (free) re. post processing software. There's tons of stuff out there. Gimp is basically a free Photoshop (and there is now even a version made to look like the PS interface). However to get you started Picasa is a great (free) program that will also help you sort and manage your photo library.
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Old Jun 2, 2011, 2:03 PM   #15
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Gimp can do almost everything photoshop can do, and it is free. Versions for windows, mac & linux.
Irfanview is a good simple photo editor (windows only, or on unix systems with Wine), and can also run many photoshop plug-ins.
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Old Jun 2, 2011, 3:49 PM   #16
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Here's another question for you, regarding photo editing/post-processing: I take TONS of photos. I'm sure that's the case for most of you, as well. Obviously, I'm sure that most people don't edit ALL of their photos. I'm guessing you pick a few and work on those. How much time do you typically spend on a photo? How time consuming is it?

Right now, I'm not a perfectionist when it comes to my pictures. That's partly because I don't have the time to sweat every detail. Also, compared to the pictures from my old canon point and shoot, every shot looks amazing! :-) I'm sure I'll get a little pickier as time goes on. For now, I'm just enjoying the new camera, and trying to work on setting up the camera properly for each shot. I'm fiddling with many of the in-camera settings to see what works best for me. White balance is something that I'm still trying to perfect. Getting better at it, but sometimes I really screw it up!
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Old Jun 2, 2011, 6:47 PM   #17
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It will be interesting to see how people respond to your question. I suspect this forum has a broad range -- some probably do minimal processing; others I suspect do quite a bit.

I typically shoot raw plus jpeg, and for most of my shots, the jpeg straight from the camera is fine for my purposes. For my favorite shots, I'll work with the raw file to produce a better image. On average, I probably spend 5-10 minutes on a shot, making adjustments to levels, cropping, and straightening horizons. (It's embarrassing to admit how frequently, when I hand hold the camera, the horizon is not level.) On very rare occasions, I'll spend an hour or more cloning out distracting features and doing more intensive adjustments.
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Old Jun 2, 2011, 7:23 PM   #18
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I Have used Photoshop Elements (the original, not even a version number), Photoshop Elements 5 and now Photoshop Elements 6. For simple editing when the images don't need much work I use Picasa 3 (free from Google), it is a simple program with a very good organizer (but do not use the sharpen feature, ugly). I occasionally use Lightroom 2.5 on my RAW files.

I have spent more than an hour on some images but usually I try to keep it simple and take only a few minutes on the first image of a set and then apply similar fixes to the others. I use "Auto Smart Fix" in PSE6 first to see what it does, sometimes that does the trick and saves me a lot of time.

It is fun but don't get too involved in post processing unless you really enjoy the work. To some it is fun, to others it becomes drudgery, play with it to see where you fit. I used to spend ages on each and every image, now I do as little post processing as I can (although I admit I am getting back into this since many of my images do need a little more attention than I have been giving them).

Good luck, have fun and get yourself a fast prime, the very reasonably priced DA(L) 35mm f2.4 is a marvelous lens at a very low price, a definite winner as an all round fast lens. (f2.4 is not particularly fast compared to a DA* 55mm f1.4 but it is much faster than the kit zooms so it will allow you to get great low light shots and give fast autofocus for less than $200).

Glad to have you on board.
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Old Jun 2, 2011, 9:46 PM   #19
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Thanks for the lens recommendation, Ira. It sounds like a nice lens that won't cost me a fortune! I may have to get my hands on one of those this summer. :-)

I have a feeling that the post processing would, for me, become drudgery. I think that's why I've been so reluctant to jump into it.

Amy
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Old Jun 3, 2011, 3:14 AM   #20
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Hi Amy,
Re. PP... I use the full version of PS, and after several years of practice, I spend no more than a couple of minutes on individual shots, if you have a lot of pics to process there's no reason why you can't organise batch processing.
Once proficient in PS, it's relatively easy to make "Actions" that automate a lot of run of the mill processing. I'm not familiar with Elements, but I'd guess the above processing should be possible (perhaps someone can confirm that?).

With my K100D I can only shoot RAW or .jpg not both, so I use the small program "Instant JPG from RAW" which very quickly produces a batch of.jpg images when required. ... Jack

http://mtapesdesign.com/instant-jpeg-from-raw-utility/
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