Some Quick and Easy Techniques for Editing

by David Peters

In Digital photography, enhancement is very helpful to help you edit your pictures. Sometimes an original looks so bad, it appears as if nothing can be done to help it. Not true! A couple commonly used enhancements are angle correction of slanted pictures and barrel and pincushion correction. The angle correction basically defines itself in the title. If the picture is slightly titled then the angle correction enhancement will help it out quite a bit. One thing the tool needs to have is anti-aliasing. Barrel and pincushion correction is used to fix slanted horizons that were caused by the camera being used to zoom up as far is could go. These enhancements are used mainly for generally annoying changes that some people wouldn’t even notice unless it was dramatic, but are useful nonetheless.

To resize or to resample, that is the question. The answer to that question is really what your editor has and what you feel like doing. Resizing is a lot simpler than re-sampling but doesn’t turn out as nice. This is because when you reduce an image with resizing a few pixels will be deleted altogether. When enlarging an image by resizing the pixels will be doubled or even tripled. This creates a fuzzy or blocky image. While re-sampling uses algorithms to either interpolate (enlarging the image by adding color to pixels) or reduce images by re-calculating all the pixels in the photo. Decent image editors will have a few algorithms for re-sampling and resizing will be an available option.

Lossy or lossless, this is the question of compression. Choosing compression formats is pretty easy; do you want the original image? Or do you want to be able to upload images to the web quickly and without worry? Lossless is for the people who want to the original, you can’t pick what size the image will end up in but there will be no loss of the original image. Basically this is for if you want to be able to view the image but not send across the web. Lossy is all about easy transportation of images. You can pick the size of the image and transferring it is extremely easy and fast. Lossy generally ends up in the format of .jpg which is the most commonly read image format across the internet. Lossless ends up often in the .png format which is the most accepted format amongst average image software. When it comes down to deciding you have to think about whether you want it to be quickly accessible or completely original.

Viewing images is just as important as editing them. In order to easily access your images your photo viewer should be able to be customized, easily to use, have photo enhancement tools, printable contact sheets, convenient for attaining pictures, be able manage EXIF data and be able to batch process images. Some good ones are Zoner Photo Stuido which is quite user friendly. Another is Photophilia which is extremely adjustable and able to batch process. Selecting a photo viewer is important, depending on what kind of computer user you are you can select a viewer that is quick and easy or complicated but has some great functions. Some handy functions are: slide show, batch processor, editor functions, and zoom factor.

When you want to you don’t have do edit a whole bunch of images at a time. Having something that will control all the changes you want made to a large amount of images. If you want the images resizes it is very easy. There are bunch of types of batch processors. Each has its ups and downs, some photo viewers even have batch software that comes with them. A good example of what you want a batch processor to is have a large amount of images in one directory ready to go. Then you tell the software what to do, e.g. 50 images that need to be resized to 100 x 50 pixels then add a watermark and compress the image to 5kb to be transferred in email. Then you tell the program to run and within the next hour your images will be all ready to go.

A handy tool to have if you don’t intend to collect thousands of pictures is a digital photo album. This is handy because you can add descriptions and make sure you get a nice looking album for people to look at. This is different from a photo view because it actually stores all the photos no matter where they are located. The program will actually go and find all your photos. This would not be recommended if you have more than 2,000 photos because if a file gets corrupted you could lose all your pictures. An online viewer would actually be useful because then after you used a batch processor you could upload them all to the site and have just as nice of an album online. In the end it is up to you whether even want an album in the first place.

Lots of questions come in everyday about different types of batch software, and other image processes here are a couple: Q: My photos have EXIF data, but no “taken date”, how can it be ? A: Basic information like the date, aperture, shutter speed etc should be written into the EXIF data of the photo by any camera. “Normally” differences between camera makes should only be with the “makernotes”. Makernotes are mostly completely different with different makes.Nevertheless some cameras seem to save EXIF data without saving the “taken date”. The user who did report the problem did send me one of his photos. While the other EXIF fields (camera name, aperture, shutter speed etc…) were present, the EXIF date fields were empty. The camera of the user is a Nikon Coolpix 880. Now I do not pretend that every Coolpix 880 shows the same problem. It may be one out of a given series, it may only be the Coolpix 880’s sold in a specific Country, it may even be that some fake (and unperfect) Coolpix 880’s have found their way to the market. Who knows? Q: I can’t find any way of getting my digital camera to work on my pc. A: With most digital cameras you get a pc software. This software is intended to be used to get the photos onto the pc and to do some other tasks too.Indeed most of these programs are not very convenient and you can easily go without ever using them. Easy ways to acquire your photos (i.e. get the photos onto the computer) are described at PC camera software or how to by-pass them to acquire photos.

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