Old 08-04-2012, 12:11 AM   #1
Andrew Crosby
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Default Requesting Help / Thoughts on Apparent Rookie Problem

(I just posted this to Rail Photography forum, but then thought this might be the better venue.)

I'm a relative rookie trying to better understand and overcome a recurring problem. Some of my shots, even when taken in good light, look bland, possibly due to overexposure. Some of these turn out well with minor touch ups using PSE (mostly lighting and color / saturation) while others turn out looking fake and oil painting-like as is the case with the shot in the link below. (Brace yourself - it's a real stinker.)

It doesn't seem that my results should be this bad - so my question is what might I be doing wrong? Is it just a matter of more experience and trial and error with PSE or is there a more fundamental problem here?

I appreciate any thoughts or suggestions as I strive to reach a higher level of beginner, so thanks for your time.

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...14&key=9562817
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Old 08-04-2012, 01:06 AM   #2
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something looks out of whack here. to me it looks like you need to adjust your "levels" "shadow" slider. right now the colors look washed out. an unprocessed JPEG out of the camera should look better than that. did you mess up the exposure? what does the old histogram look like?
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Old 08-04-2012, 05:02 AM   #3
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It looks a little heavy with the shadow/highlights treatment.
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Old 08-04-2012, 06:03 PM   #4
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Post a shot showing what it looks like right out of the camera
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/22299476@N05/
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:06 PM   #5
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Thanks for commenting guys, but we have the problem figured out. I was using a lens filter in fair light (because I'm a rookie and didn't know any better) which gave me terrible shutter speed at 200 ISO. So I jacked up my ISO to compensate and overexposed the original shot. Mystery solved, and lesson learned.

Thanks again for commenting here.
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:36 PM   #6
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What your image looks like is the result of heavy post processing. I don't think I've ever seen an out-of-camera shot look like that, regardless of how high the ISO is.
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Old 08-05-2012, 02:15 PM   #7
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Thanks, Jim. I've been having difficulty with overdoing certain things in post processing to address certain problems - like just adding saturation to fix poor contast, for example). Part of why I posted this was to get feedback and thoughts to help broaden and improve my work with PSE.
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