Fundamentals for Great Prints

Lesson 4/9 - Photo Developing Workflow


Fundamentals for Great Prints


Lesson Info

Photo Developing Workflow

There is a workflow that you should follow, and this workflow, I've been using this processing and editing workflow for a long time, I've taught this method forever, and it's not my Kagan's method. I think most photographers kind of work this way. And the way that we should think about working in software after you've taken the great photo, is to think globally, then think regional, and then think locally, alright? So we kind of work globally, and what I mean by globally is you work on the whole image, what are the things that pertain to every pixel in this image. Well what are those things? Well those are white balance, it's overall contrast, and I'm gonna go through this in detail, I'm gonna show you in the software how I do this. So I'm doing kind of the global things first. Then, I go to regionally. What do I need to do to the sky? What do I need to do to this side of the face? What do I need to do to the foreground? And so I'm using things like layer masks in Photoshop or I'm usin...

g the gradient tool in Lightroom, where I'm toning down or brightening up or changing the colors of this whole region, okay, so regionally. And then, we get to pixel, pixel level editing. Well, what are the pixel level things, well zits. Stray hairs coming off the air. We've got dust in the sky, right? Get rid of that dust. All of these pixel level things. Even things like, oh my gosh, there's a water bottle, piece of garbage over here, I need to get rid of that, so we do those pixel level. And the reason why I say that we work this way is because the amount of time it takes goes up as you go down this list. You can do a white balance change like that. (snaps fingers) You just change it from sunny to shady, white balance, okay, done. You can do regional editing pretty quick. I'm gonna paint over the sky and make it bluer. But then when it comes to the pixel level editing, that takes a lot of time. Oh my gosh, this boy has 15 hundred zits on his face, click, click, click. Oh, a lot of stray hairs on that guy, gotta get rid of those. Or, oh my gosh, my sensor is so dusty. And so all of that takes a lot of time. The reason why I put that at the end is because, at this point if you decide you don't want to work on the file anymore, you haven't invested all the detail time in the pixel level. So I'm a professional photographer, I do this for a living, I gotta be efficient, and this is the way I can be efficient. I'm also a recovering mechanical engineer, as we were talking about this morning, and I just like efficiency for the sake of efficiency, so be efficient! So start big, and then get down to detail. So let me go through this process, in fact, I'm gonna show you an editing workflow, I'm gonna start with the colors, I'm gonna do tone adjustments. The word tone is important, tone means brightness. A lot of people go, tone, meaning the color, but no, tone is all about brightness and contrast, okay? Then we do our color adjustments, vibrance and I'm gonna talk about why vibrance is more better than saturation. I think saturation's dangerous and scary. You should stay away from saturation, but you should love and embrace vibrance, such a good tool. And then we'll go into regional edits, pixel edits, and then I'll talk a little bit about sharpening, and take you through that process.

Class Description

To see a photograph at it's most powerful it needs to be printed. In this course, Mike Hagen will teach the basics of printing amazing photos. He'll cover settings and exports to print from Lightroom® and Photoshop®. The different sizes and aspect ratios to consider as well as how to sharpen for best quality. He'll show the different considerations for choosing the best paper and more. Start building your print portfolio with these essential tips in getting quality prints.


Dennis Walsh

This is a good fundamentals class. Mike is an excellent teacher. If you are just starting printing, this would be a good choice. If you are more experienced at printing it is probably too shallow. I thought the price of the class was high for the time and detail of the lessons.


Good solid fundamentals class for beginners. If you're a fairly seasoned pro wanting to refine your output techniques, you'll probably find this class too general. It concentrates on the basics of achieving a good image with a basic overview of printer settings and Adobe output dialog boxes.