One of the problems with modern software is that it allows a photographer to get terribly lazy. With all the manipulations that people can make to digital photographs, some photographers are less concerned about composition, exposure, and the quality of their images because they put their trust in their software to correct anything that went wrong.
So what’s wrong with this?
The easiest way to explain it is in terms of pixels. You remember all those details the camera salesman gave you about the importance of pixels when buying your camera? Well, he did that for a good reason. The more pixels make up an image, the greater the resolution and that means that you can blow your images up to larger sizes without impacting the quality of the image too much.
When you crop a photograph, what you are doing is chopping off a lot of the pixels from around the edges of the photograph where the cropping occurs. That leaves you with a picture that is grainier because you want it to fit the same size of frame but you are making it fill the page with fewer pixels thus stretching the pixels from a part of your photo. Thus, the quality of the image will diminish.
Look at the image below because this gives you good detail of what grain is.
This happens when you try to make a picture bigger or have taken it with the wrong exposure. The grain which is showing on the image below would spoil the quality of the prints produced. Thus, you do yourself no service cutting a larger photograph down to make it look more like the original idea that you had when you took the picture. Take time to compose your images because this is going to improve your photographic experience, rather than using software as a crutch. Of course, you can use professional software such as Photoshop to improve your images, but imagine if your images became so good you didn’t have to.
The other disadvantage of relying too heavily on your software is that you do not learn how to use the different settings on your camera, compensating for poor results with editing. This is obviously disadvantageous since it stops the learning curve in its path. For example, under or overexposure can be compensated for with software, but what a picture that is under or overexposed says is that your settings on the camera were incorrect. It is far better to take time in understanding all those settings and thus coming up with great images without the need to change what you did wrong.
People who look directly at the flash during the taking of a photograph will show up with red eyes on the eventual photograph when really all that is needed is a slight adjustment in their posture to fix the problem. Many people are disappointed by the “red-eye” phenomenon but can fix this without having to use the software.
The software makes a photographer lazy about the pose and that’s a bad thing. A photographer who is aware of the possibility of red-eye can ask the people in the photo to pose slightly differently so that the flash does not hit them in the eye. He can also use an extended flash much like that used by the press to avoid this happening.
Using a flash isn’t going to help the quality of your images especially if you don’t take them in a studio environment, and let’s face it, most images are taken in a less formal setting. If you can use a tripod, increase the exposure time, and lower the ISO you can get some stunning images.
The quality of images
People often try to compensate for bad quality images using software because they have not set up their camera correctly. Using a large storage memory card, you can adjust your camera to take either mediocre quality images or you can up the specification and take quality images.
Because quality images take up more space on the card, people tend to opt for somewhere in the middle and this is a huge mistake. It would be better to have a couple of free cards and set the camera for optimal performance, rather than using software to compensate for bad quality images, simply because the setting is set in such a way to maximize the number of shots which can be taken, rather than depending upon the quality of the images. That’s a huge mistake.
Use the camera to get the very best shots that you can and always opt for quality. If you decide to take the easy road to have masses of mediocre photographs the quality will be less and your images will show it. On a screen, they may look great, but as soon as you go over to the print process, it will be noticeable compared with images using the higher setting which adds more pixels to the image and thus fills in any potential grain caused by lack of pixels on lesser quality images.
Learning the ropes from your camera handbook
Read the booklet that came with your camera and learn what it is capable of doing. If you have lost this, you can always download a copy from the Internet as most quality manufacturers allow you to do this. If you need more specific help with a problem that you are experiencing with your camera, why not see what’s available on YouTube because there is some amazing information out there which may address a specific problem that you have encountered.
Don’t be shy about finding out more information. Every time you learn a little bit more about your camera’s capabilities, you improve your chances of taking great shots and that’s a real plus.