Control Points

One of the challenges in learning to work with different photo editing software packages is that their control tools can be vastly different.  This month’s Viewfinders club topic is Black and White, and I’ve already covered the functionality of the great Nik Software package of Silver Efex Pro, but what I haven’t talked about is their unique and very helpful interface, which is standard across their entire product line.  Nik uses control points which can be dropped on any point on the image.  These points have an adjustable radius, which lets you select how far the effects spread.  The second adjustment controls brightness which does exactly what you would think. The third adjust contrast which controls the relative strength between the edges of the bright and light pixels.   The last slider control is called structure.  It is a very powerful localized sharpening tool that really enhances textural details in your image.  Each control point can be adjusted individually. You can eliminate the ones that don’t work just by dragging the icon in the control panel to the trashcan.  By applying these micro corrections, you can accomplish very subtle changes, very quickly.  I think that is a good cause to ring the bell---whoops.