Three Cliff Bay, Gower, Wales


It’s safe to say that my understanding of digital photography has improved over the years, as has my processing skills. Those that interact with me on a regular basis know that my background is in film cameras and I am a relatively recent convert to Digital.

I was constantly disappointed with my early digital shots; they lacked depth, contrast and a degree of clarity and saturation that I had got used to shooting Fuji Velvia Transparency film.

Looking at these shots from 2009 I noticed two things:

Two of the unprocessed shots are below for comparison.

 

I could not remedy the first point although I only shoot RAW these days, but I could look at the processing and I did. All of the shots above were processed in Adobe Lightroom, using basic colour Temp and contrast adjustments followed by graduated filters to bring detail back into the sky and sand, some adjustment to saturation and a bit of brushing in local adjustments.

The end result is that shots I had discarded as flat and lifeless now have a new life. I’ve said before that it’s worth looking back at old files and trying to reprocess them with new techniques and I think the images above show that to be a valid view.

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12 responses to “Three Cliff Bay, Gower, Wales

  1. These are great. Love the green (I’m missing Spring, so these are nice to look at in the cold of winter). I’ve been doing the same with some of my old photos, and have to completely agree – learning more about what makes a good image, as well as better processing techniques, can really breathe life into something that was previously considered a missed opportunity.

    • Thanks Jennifer, I’ve always tried to get the shot right before pressing the shutter but these early shots suffered from lack of understanding of the digital process.

  2. It can be quite an eye opener to go back and reprocess images from the back catalog. No matter how well we thought the earlier versions were, I bet nearly everyone will come up with some improvement.

  3. A lesson to us all and so very true too. I look back at some of my early processing and cringe at what I then thought was ‘good’ but really was rubbish. The really sad part is that in those early days I hadn’t wised up to the fact that you should never work on the one and only ‘original’. A hard lesson learnt. What a difference in your images too.

    • Thanks Andy, the really sad part is that I hadn’t even attempted to process these. I took one look and decided they were not worth the effort, just glad I never deleted them .

  4. Terrific thoughts and images here, Chris. We’ve all been through the processes you outline here, I am sure. It’s all part of the growth experience, I guess. Regardless, I really enjoyed your post and images here today, I find it fascinating to see some early work from my favorite artists.

  5. That brings back memories of a school geography week on the Gower – a beautiful place.
    When I look back at my early post-processing, ‘cack-handed’ springs to mind!

    • Cack Handed has to be better that “did not even bother” which was my problem. Thing is I used to look at negatives and contact sheets in the old days and think “yeah, not much sky detail but I can burn that in” but for some reason the thought did not occur to me when I started with digital

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