And, even more Sharpen examples

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow click HERE. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the bottom-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading. BTW, you can click on photos for a larger version.

Yup. I’m still reworking old photos with Topaz Sharpen AI.

Yup, I’m still impressed with the sharpness gains, even from photos I thought already sharp.

Plus, I wanted to see how that sharpness translated into Black & Gray & White, a processing choice that already seems to enhance the sharpness and details of photos. For these experiments, I chose Nik Collection Silver Efex Pro 2 for the conversion to B&G&W.

Thus, the above is transformed into this . . .

Mind you, for each of the following color photos, one faces many choices when traveling down the monochrome path. Choices others are better suited to make than me. I don’t process enough B&G&W photos to have an intuitive feel what filters are best for which photos. I blindly feel way along a dim hallway until one of the switches I bump into lights up my “oh, that seems adequate” circuitry.

For instance, this photo . . .

. . . becomes this . . .

Is that the best processing to show off the flower? The best way to showcase the bee? Is it a good balance for the scene but not for the particulars?

Ah, my dear readers . . . had I studied photography, had I mastered the presentation of colors and shades of gray (I think there are around fifty or so), I would be able to bulshi . . . er . . . justify my choice of processing.

Since I don’t have the expertise, all I can say is . . .

. . . look at this next trio of photos.

I’ve always liked these photos, especially the middle photo. At full resolution, they are a bit grainier than I normally like and while I could go back and remove some of the noise, it’s good remembering what film used to look like when developed.

Where it any other bird than a bluebird, I would say the following B&G&W versions look just as good . . .

But I can’t. The colors are an integral part of those photos and the reductions to B&G&W — although not awful — don’t measure up.

It could be someone with more skill in B&G&W processing might come up with a version that is as stunning, but that’s not me, Bob. I mean, if all I was showing were the B&G&W photos, they would look great (especially if you click on them or see the full-size versions in SmugMug).

Side Note: Flickr was bought by SmugMug a few months ago. It’s a photo platform with thousands of users and many, many, amazing photos, all available for anyone to explore. Flickr was losing a lot of money and SmugMug buying it helped preserve the content. However, it’s still losing money. If you are a photographer looking for a place to share your photos, looking for a place to join other enthusiastic photographers in specialty groups, THIS link will take you to their membership drive and if you sign up and enter this code: 25in2019, you get 25% off the yearly membership price ($37.44 instead of $50). A price that is amazingly low given that you get unlimited storage for your account and even more amazing when considering the perks they offer for new members.

If you want to see how it looks, THIS is the link to the pictures I’m featuring in this post. I think they look as good there as they do on SmugMug for much less the price.

I especially wanted to try my hand at sharpening some photos I had of a Snowy Egret . . . here are the color versions . . .

And, of course, here are the B&G&W photos . . .

In particular, I was interested in the details of the plumage, especially given the subject itself is very bright (it was in full sun) and given that Sharpen AI lightens a photo, I was curious if it would maintain the details I had seen in the originals.

I think you can judge for yourselves that it does a pretty good job. These are not as large as the photos in SmugMug or Flickr, but they still show a fair amount of detail in the feathers.

I’ll end this post with sandpipers photos. The second is my favorite of these birds because I caught it with both legs off the ground.

And, here they are in B&G&W . . .

Next time, I’ll showcase landscapes . . . I think most readers will like what I pick.

Or, maybe not.

And now, the Color gallery . . .

And now, the B&G&W gallery . . .

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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