One of the challenges in digital photography is knowing when you are done. Since the images really exist in the computer, the temptation to keep “tweaking” them is always there. The LR4 upgrade to the processing engine and the development tools make this question even harder. The software gives you the option to reprocess all your images to the updated 2012 processing algorithm. After a lot of thought, I have gone back and revisited some of my older “good” images to see if I could tell the difference. The answer is “YES, I CAN”. The new adjustment controls for highlights, shadows, whites, and black, really make a difference as does the improvements to the clarity sliders. Here are 3 images which I have redone and fixed some problems, which I never was fully happy with before. This image of the wood on the outside of a beach bar in Florida has a great story. It was shot in Cocoa Beach, about 12 blocks from where Roger’s dad lives. He was always jealous of the beauty of this shot, so when he went down to visit, he was going to take a “better” version of the same picture. Luckily for me, the bar has changed décor and the shot no longer exists. This shot of the sunset in California really shows how the clarity slider can intensify things like the clouds. All that information was in the image, but the new tools make it easy to accentuate the textures in the image.
Finally, this photo shows how well the new shadow recovery slider works. I could adjust the exposure to bring back the really red color of the chair and not have the edge go into the dark parts of zone 10—which can’t really be printed.
What this means of course is that I can spend more time making my favorite pictures even better.