The Price of Admission

•November 11, 2019 • Leave a Comment

There are no photographs in this blog.

All text. Perhaps boring then. However, I did not have copyrights. I took some poor snapshots for my own reference. Had I posted them, they would have been of someone else’s intellectual property. I know how hard we work for money. I am sensitive to such things and observant of the law and the intent that people get compensated for their creative efforts, even when it seems many in the Ether do not seem to care about property rights.

Last week I went to the Capture Integration Photo Fest at Capture Integration, off 10th Street, Atlanta. Take a look at the link and the list of speakers, and then check out their individual websites.

I learned a lot. First, if you want to make real money in photography, that could support you and a family of 4, pay for the kids’ college and give you a decent retirement, your entry fee, the bare minimum you need just for one camera and lens is 10 grand. Check out Capture Integration’s products. Then add your lighting, computer systems, and software, marketing, etc. You will invest considerable capital in your start-up. Remember cash flow, too. You do not want to be investment rich but unable to handle day to day expenses.

The great thing about this level of equipment is that its professional level in every respect, and carries the expectation is that it lasts long enough to get a decent return on investment. None of this is hobbyist stuff you trade in for the next whiz-bang techno update.

The folks who presented at the Photo Fest are all making at least 6 figures or more per year. They have invested years in their craft, and developing lines of business. They spend money to make money. They have clients who are willing to pay, let’s say, $80,000 for a photograph.

One of the speakers pointed out that we price our work way to cheaply. If you cater to the art festival and tents crowd, then you get what that market will bear. If someone is dickering over $100 print, then you probably are in the wrong market.

I had friends who ran a lab near here. Steve and Lavern. Great people. Steve had been in the business for years and years. His customers were professionals mostly. I asked him one time about how I should price my work. What he told me amazed me at the time. He said, “Price it wherever you want to price it. Your price will determine your market and the kind of people you will deal with. The quality of your work will determine whether you belong in that market.” He also told me that people will pay a lot of money for sh**.

Talking tech and to put some of this in perspective, my “pro” camera is a Nikon D7500 delivering over 20mp, I have a couple entry level “backups” also delivering 20mp, if I shoot a full RAW file. My computer system has 8 gb memory. I have to turn things off to run Photoshop and Lightroom at the same time. I need a much bigger processor. I need the cash flow, and I need the investment.

Bare bones, minimum for the pro photographers who spoke is probably 40mp, medium format. A lot of them were talking 150 mp. One said a 1 GP (gigapixel) resolution. I recall that was for architectural photography. Consider the computing power necessary to process these image sizes. Consider the camera and lens quality necessary to produce it.

I saw wall size prints done on aluminum with every eyelash hair visible. I know that is possible with small format. I saw some of Louis Foster’s big prints he did with 5mp Nikon years ago when I worked for him as a contractor. That was also when 5mp was as big as it got. He was shooting events at the World Congress Center. I did shots of the seminars and speakers. However, in general you need the big capture to do the big prints. Think big scale and scale your equipment selections accordingly.

One person who spoke studied film for 7 years, and did graduate level work in art at NYU. That was before he took up photography. He travels the world now. He does architectural photography. His influences were black and white films from the 1940’s such as Citizen Kane, with its depth and lighting.

Am I envious of them? Not at my age. There’s no practical way I could start any of this now, and not really even when I first started shooting professionally as a side gig. These folks ain’t doing no side gig. However, does that mean there is not money to be made? There is still a lot of money to be made in the trade if you up your craft. I’m talking to the few I know who may read this post.

Next time CI does this seminar, I highly recommend you attend. They have locations throughout the United States.

My AA Days

•October 31, 2019 • Leave a Comment
Similarity is the sincerest form of flattery

I was so serious!

After a few years playing around with cameras I declared myself an artist and went about the joyous effort of copying my photographic heroes. I had yet to figure out that I was not them, that they lived in entirely different times, that what they did was to break new ground in uncharted territory.

I saw several prints by the famous landscape photographer Ansel Adams. I was inspired, actually beyond inspired. I wanted to see like Adams, I wanted to print like Adams. So I studied him. I was an AA disciple.

I bought all Adams’ books: The Camera, then The Negative, and The Print, and others. I bought his autobiography. My office at work chipped in and bought me the hardcover Yosemite and the Range of Light. It was an early printing, still very valuable today.

I studied Fred Picker’s Zone VI Workshop. I learned the Zone System of black and white photography. I went through all the training I could from books and experimentation. I was disciplined so I could do well being self-taught.

I wore out friends and family who could not understand why a simple family snapshot should be taken by a wooden 4×5 view camera. They endured my craziness.

I made treks to Yosemite. Figuratively speaking, I set up my tripod in Ansel’s tripod holes. It was a grand time!

Then one day something happened that changed my life forever. I was delivered from the mountain top.

I’ve told the story about hiking with my big, honkin’ 4×5 view camera, 25 pounds more of film holders, light meter, 10 pound tripod (I recently purchased a much lighter one), and other accessories. I’ll retell it briefly.

I was hiking in the north Georgia mountains. My mission was a set of waterfalls. I came to a 7 or 8 foot deep ditch with a stream flowing through it. To cross the gully, I had to navigate a single log bridge, heel to toe, or shimmy along. Too far to sling my beautiful equipment, too far and too dangerous to put everything on my back and cross the log, and too deep to climb down and up it’s sheer, wet dirt and underbrush covered walls. No left turn, no right turn, no place to go.

And I had diarrhea! I gave up, turned around, and dejectedly, I returned home.

I sold all my large format stuff after that, gave thanks for all that Adams and Picker had taught me, swore allegiance to Galen Rowell and actually went to one of his seminars, and ever since then I’ve been a devotee of light and small cameras when I photograph anything.

So these photographs from my 4×5 AA days are all I think are even worth looking at. The one at the top is made from a 4×5 inch Polaroid negative. Really a cool product. The ones below are visually self explanatory.

There is something very magical about large format – 4×5 inch and larger negatives and slides. The tones progress like heavy cream, all smooth and no blotches. They will make you forget the trouble you went through to get them.

However, there is also something more immediate and relational in small format cameras, both film and digital. Being very impatient and relational, it fits me. Find something that fits.


Technical Data: If you check the technical data from the images, they will all say the camera is a Nikon D7500. That is the camera I used to “scan” the negative. The actual camera for all 4×5 inch negatives was a cherry wood, 4×5 view camera. Lens, I recall was either a 150mm or 210 mm lens. I don’t recall the brand. Film for all except the image at the top was Kodak Tri-X.

(All images in all my blogs are owned by me, William D. Hunton. I pay my copyright dues, do my best to obey the law, and I keep all rights to all images I make to myself. You do not have the right to copy or use them for anything. My apology if this statement troubles you.)

Sad Stories – The Prequel

•October 20, 2019 • Leave a Comment

In my previous blog, Sad Stories on the Street, what was supposed to have been about street photography became more a story of how a photographer, me, can become personally involved and not just an observer. It was unintentional, but considering it a bit more deeply, what was I expecting differently?

This blog is more the prequel to Sad Stories…

I’m posting several of the original images from my walk and perhaps you can see how the story developed.

The images were taken with an A6000 I picked up used for a song. (Human Nature: We’re all guilty of thinking the next new thing will make us better or happier. Save a ton of money. Always, always look for used first. Thrift shops, pawn shops, and online markets are great.)

All images were in RAW or in Sony’s case “ARW”, processed in Adobe Lightroom, converted to high contrast black and white, and presented here. There’s no hocus pocus.

There are so-called purists of documentary photography, especially from the heyday of film, who would include the sprocket holes and maybe even the “Kodak Safety Film” logo in their photographs. I am not sure why, but maybe that was done to assure the viewer that he/she is seeing the entirety of the photographer’s vision. I always thought it was a distraction at best, or even a preening affectation.

Can’t do that now. Ain’t no sprocket holes in digital, but there are filters to add both sprocket holes and “grain.” I think there is even a Kodak Tri-X filter. Maybe better is to pull out the old film camera that Grandpa used and buy a roll of black and white film. It will slow you down to where you have to think and compose your photographs, as well as anticipate them. Mail the roll out for processing, wait a week for the negatives and scans and then go to Photoshop. How did we live back then?

I don’t think the original captured image could be my entire vision. Countless times I’ve started to work with a negative/slide or digital file only to decide to move in tighter, and cut the distractions.

What you include in the frame is already edited by you and the camera the moment you click the shutter release. You could have recorded a serene scene, say, a cow in a pasture or a mother and child, while the Apocalypse is exploding outside of the camera’s frame. You have that power, and responsibility.

However, even in the camera on the card or on the film, it may not be complete. It is just the original notation, the sketch. In my mind it’s not complete until the final photograph is a reality.

Eugene Smith is a photo hero of mine. He was a documentary photographer from the mid-1900’s. His iconic images of World War II in Life Magazine may be most recognizable. See W. Eugene Smith: Shadow and Substance, The Life and Work of an American Photographer by Jim Hughes, 1989.

I liked Eugene Smith’s idea about cropping an image: “[I crop ] for the benefit of the pictures. The world just does not fit conveniently into the format of a 35mm camera.” – W. Eugene Smith, Pictures on a page : photo-journalism, graphics and picture editing by Harold Evans , Page: 123

So if we take a photograph in RAW or Jpeg, that does not matter. If you want to switch your digital camera to record in monochrome, if that allows you to “see” better, then great. What I think matters is the final image. It is not successful unless it comes very close to what I intended to communicate.

Enough talk. Photographs. I hope you enjoy them and maybe they help you.


Sad Stories on the Street

•October 11, 2019 • Leave a Comment

Half the world will tell me, “You are exploiting these people.” The other half will say, “You need to publish this photograph.” In the end it is a matter of conscience and the agreement among J. H. pictured here seated, the folks with the signs, and me.

I had permission from each person present to make this photograph. I told them that I would not embarrass them or present them in a negative way.

Ambiguity already. What does “negative way” mean? Some kind of communication went on. But you do not know that for certain. You do not know the “rest of the story” as Paul Harvey, radio commentator, used to say. The photographer does, from his point of view. Because of the ambiguity at this moment, you the viewer are free to make up your own story.

Obviously, there is some type of demonstration going on. There may be something about race relations, or the racial divide, or something more presented here. What is the story? Write down what you think it is before you read about it. Write it down and later consider what was in your mind that informed your initial response.

I was in the Marietta Square area photographing. I noticed on one of the corners a group of demonstrators carrying signs calling for peace and love. Sounds very 60’s but these folks do not look the part as presented by popular media.

I approached them and asked them all, directed at no one, “What’s this about.” One woman and one man spoke simultaneously and then the woman permitted the man to explain. I heard his testimony directly, so I am a witness. You read it second hand. To you it is hearsay. Now you have a question to answer: Am I , the photographer trustworthy?

The leader of the group explained, and the rest of the group agreed, that they were on this same street corner every Friday to proclaim peace, to denigrate war and those who profit from it. Large corporations were specifically mentioned.

The man wore a pin which read, “Pass the Amendment”. I asked him what it means. He said that corporations in America have too much power and influence over our government. Congress needs to pass laws to resend corporations’ treatment as entities with personal rights, same as people have.

We talked more.

Then J.H. strolled up supported by his walker. I had seen him before in the park. The people in the group know him by first name and they talked. They were familiar enough to know how he normally dresses, and they remarked how sharp he looked. He related sadly, “I just left a funeral… (pause)… for my son. For my son,” he emphasized. “He was killed by a stray bullet. He was only 19. He don’t do drugs or nothin’. He was helping his grandma out of the car and a bullet hit him in the temple and he dropped dead. Right in front o’ her.”

There was shock among the group and sympathy, maybe empathy. This same story is so common in Atlanta, way too common, almost daily. I heard two similar stories last week. One person died. Another person, a little four year old girl in bed, was hit in the foot. (I have a four year old granddaughter.) A bullet came through the wall of her house. She will recover, but the stupid, the hateful, the violent just grow more violent and evil every day. I was among the right people to hear J.H.’s story. This time his common story became personal.

Do you know how many people I know personally who have had family and friends murdered, and who were murdered themselves, here in Atlanta? Awful!

Condolences and prayers for J.H. and his family were said. This photographer became part of the sad story. J.H.’s story became my story because we were all sharing his grief. Time passed. More conversation, but it began to wain. What more can be said in response to such evil in the world? What could I do?

Then the thought: Do I photograph this man in his grief? How private is private? How would a photograph of him be perceived out of context. How can I tell even part of the story? Should I ask him? Should I impose? Should I insert myself when I just met the man? All these questions simultaneously swirled in my head.

My request came out of the blue, and it shocked me. It seemed like someone else was asking, “May I photograph you?” The mere question in my universe was an imposition. Like I said, probably half of you, or more, will say I exploited the situation and the people there. On the other hand, doesn’t this man deserve to have his story told in a sympathetic way that is perhaps part of the message in his soul?

He answered, “Yes, just let me turn this walker around.” He posed himself. Maybe he composed himself. I took two photographs. They were pretty much the same except the expression on the woman with the sign.

The image was birthed in RAW format, so it originated in color. Here.

For this photograph, for this story, color does NOT work at all. This color photograph is not right.

I converted the image to black and white. Black and white is THE medium. It supports J.H.’s grief. It sweeps away the distractions, it clears the air. In fact, it becomes part of the story itself. You are left with the essence of the message, the signs and the man.

We were all participants in the story; the demonstrators, J.H. who suffered the loss, and me, the photographer who just happened by and asked if I could make a photograph of people carrying signs and proclaiming peace.

Pray for J.H. and his family.


Here’s Lurking at You, Kid

•October 11, 2019 • Leave a Comment
Family Photos

There are inherent tensions within the art of street photography. Contradictory things. Internal conflicts. First, it is darn creepy. If you do not consider yourself to be a creepy person, the discovery that you might be good at it – both the photographic art and at being a creeper, will shake your comfortable self perception.

There was a recent period of time where I put down my camera for all serious work. I don’t want to get puffed up, take it too seriously, and be all oeuvre bearing. This is supposed to be fun. However, for about 10 years I set aside the camera and professional photography – my side gig. I still “took pictures” but there was no intensity and care in it, certainly no art.

I did the same thing with guitar years ago. I’m not certain the reasons for these decade long refrains. With guitar, growth followed abstinence. It may be the same here between me and photography. However, I have learned in the most pointed way that we are not promised decades to learn anything unless it pleases our Creator. That gets into another arena of topics like the nature of God, faith, religion, and the purpose of our lives. Dare I speak such words these days. For later.

Reviewing in my mind my favorite photographers, there were the great landscape and nature artists – Adams, Weston, Galen Rowell. I modeled myself after those guys. But the weight of numbers of photographers whose work I admired was more toward those who reacted to the situations of life around them, and who photographed the human condition.

Here’s a list of ones who made an impact on me: Cartier-Bresson, Doisneau, Lange, Eugene Smith, SebastiĆ£o Salgado, Lewis Hine, many women, such as Diane Arbus, Sally Mann, Margaret Bourke-White, et al. Then there were the photographers in the Farm Services Administration, under Roy Stryker, who photographed during the Great Depression and World War II. The tradition continues.

I think it was Dorothea Lange who said something to the effect, “Photography teaches us that we usually do not see what is going on around us.” What the street photographer, or documentary photographer does is stop the world for a moment and directs our eyes to observe and consider what is before us; fortunate juxtapositions, the expressive movement of hands, the casual and random relationships that occur simply by changing our point of view. I think these are important things to study.

Lewis Hine almost single-handedly brought to the public’s eye the abusive conditions endured by children in factories. It was his photographs that were the catalyst behind child labor laws passed in the United States in the early 1900’s.

The FSA under Roy Stryker documented the Great Depression. Those photographers, which even included Ansel Adams, brought to light the gross unemployment, mass migration, the destruction of farmland, even the lack of basic soil conservation methods, and other effects brought about by the financial collapse. Their influence on America today is much more than we realize. Photographs change things.

As part of my continuing education in the art, I decided to try my hand at Street Photography, not the capturing of crosswalks and traffic, but of people going about their daily activities.

Things to Consider

It is not illegal to photograph people in pubic places. It is not illegal to photograph children, even in this time of evil people. The law is well established and proven in the highest courts. It’s not illegal to present people here in this blog, editorially. Now, if I took an image and sold it to a tobacco company and they used it in an ad, that person could possibly have a case for legal action. I certainly intend nothing more here than education and celebration of life.

What equipment should I use? Something light, very portable, simple to operate. The best photographs I ever took were with a Leica M4-2 rangefinder camera. One of my great regrets in life is selling this camera. If you can find one, buy it. It is a film camera. I cannot afford them now. There are less expensive alternatives.

Any simple point and shoot camera will do. I love my little Canons. I shot with an old G11 for years. It still works very well. The newer G7x has a ton more pixels, but no viewfinder, just the screen. I think a viewfinder is important, but a screen will work fine. Lately the mirrorless cameras have hit the market. One very popular, really impressive, and relatively inexpensive camera is the Sony A6000.

So you don’t need to spend tons of money on equipment. Buy them used, too. No more equipment discussion, just take what you have available, even a clunky SLR. However…

The advantage of small point-and-shoot cameras is that you do not look like a professional. People take photos all the time with their smart phones and P-S cameras. A big honkin’ full-frame Canon or Nikon DSLR with a 20-400,000 f2.8 zoom lens, whatever, does not lend itself easily to the goal here. They are heavy. They are intimidating at best. You will be noticed, and you will kill the mood faster than ice water. It is not the best tool in my opinion. The SLR is not the popular method. Will it work? Of course it will!

Here’s some photographs. Tired of words. I want to come back to this subject in another blog. Enjoy them. Comments welcome.


The Reunion

•September 10, 2019 • Leave a Comment

This one is a bit more personal. I’ll only post one photograph. I thought this photo represents the idea of a family reunion. Even though the family site is public, in order to provide some privacy, I won’t post everything, especially of the children. We have to protect them. There is truly evil in the world.

The following story is sad.

Our family is close and extended. We have a large family reunion every year. There is a lot of very good food that most cardiologists will advise you not to eat. There is a lot of good conversation and fellowship, surprising in today’s culture. Get in touch with your roots if you can. Graft yourself into some roots if you don’t know where you came from.

Reunion food! I can stand anything except temptation, and I got trapped by banana pudding. It was not the boxed pudding mix plus bananas, only fit for emergency consumption, but the real egg custard, vanilla wafer, and ripe banana variety that will fulfill your wildest dreams. Ah! Still thinking of it, but I surely did feel it when I hit the gym yesterday.

Sidetracked as usual, so back to the story. We have a reading of the minutes and during the reading, we announce the ones who have died in the past year. We’re all generally pretty healthy, so the list usually is not long (thank you Lord). This year, one name hit me. I’ll just call her Cousin J.

Cousin J. died in January this year. She had a list of people to contact. My older brother was on the list, but for some reason the person responsible did not call him, so the first we heard of her passing was when her name was read aloud.

It is always a shock. It does not matter if it is expected. I heard this one time regarding a conversation, talking of someone who had died, “Was his death untimely?” “Aren’t they all,” was the response. Every death is untimely. Solomon said we have eternity written in our hearts. There is a sense we have of something more beyond this life. Death comes to us all, but it is always a scandal.

In my twenties, I was part of a quartet, The City Folk, which was sort of a Peter, Paul, and Mary – esque singing group. Cousin J. sang with us in the group. She had a beautiful voice, an alto. She was an Elvis fan. Elvis was her Number 1 Number 1, and she left behind a lot of Elvis memorabilia. She was a member of a women’s singing group, The Sweet Adelines.

I think you may be able to open this. It may be set to private. I can’t recall. Around the 2:30 minute mark on the vid, you’ll be able to hear Cousin J. in the chorus. We recorded it in the basement of my best friend’s then future wife. It’s not a great recording, not our best sound, a private tape to be shared strictly among friends. However, it presents about two minutes of a life, now gone. I have hope of seeing her again one day.

I played this recording for my cousin, who is handling Cousin J.’s estate. We talked at the reunion about Cousin J. She said to me, “I didn’t even know she could sing.”

The point of all this is the obvious: Life is short. There is not enough time in the world. There is not enough time to love. Not enough time to learn about someone. Not enough time to share stories. Yet we all want to be known intimately.

We have stories hidden by years, covered over and buried deeply by life, hidden even from the people closest to us. The person from way back when is so different from the person now. None of us are given the opportunity to tell the story of who we are and how we became that person.

Like I said, this is a sad story. If you have a real “hope” then at least your story will be known one day.


I Went for a Walk: Derelict Amusement Park

•September 4, 2019 • Leave a Comment

They say you won’t die until your work on earth is finished. I am so behind now, I may live forever.

I have so many projects going on. The time consuming one is finding negatives and slides to “scan” to convert them from analog to digital. I have several hundred, maybe a thousand slides, mostly Kodachrome with just a few Ektachrome.

If you are not familiar with either, Kodachrome was THE standard in color film for decades. Believe it or not, the Kodachrome you have in Technicolor movies and photographs was invented in the early 1930’s by two professional musicians,  Leopold Godowsky Jr. and Leopold Mannes. Imagine that and think about trying to do something similar today. You’d have teams of people, millions of dollars in R&D and marketing. Yet these two guys did it just sort of fiddling around. (Pun. There was a pun.)

Anyway, so I have a ton of slides and I am copying them. I ran across photos I took of a derelict amusement park, located somewhere on the Carolina Beach Road between Wilmington and Kure Beach, NC. The property and the abandoned rides are long gone. I said derelict and not abandoned at first because there was water being pumped from somewhere into one of the kiddie pools.

The place fascinated me, and I took several shots just to record it. To me, it symbolized the kind of decay our amusements enjoy over time. They become old, battered, and worn out. We hold onto them too long when it would be better to abandon them. Ooh. Deep thoughts.

I thought I might return to explore it more, but for whatever reason, I did not.

Instead, you get to view these digital copies of the Kodachrome slides, and I want to show you some digital artifacts that occurred when I photographed the slides with my trusty Nikon D7500, with an advanced APS-C sensor, yielding about a 20 mb file full of information, and then processed the files in Photoshop Elements RAW processor.

Here is the gallery. Click on the images to enlarge them.

First take a look at the first image of the water slide. My comment. Eastman Kodak had a monopoly on processing Kodachrome film until about 1954, I believe. Before then, you purchased the film and processing together. So after you shot a roll, you mailed it off to Kodak, and a week later or so, you got your processed slides returned. That is correct, it took a week or longer by mail. I happen to live on the East Coast, so my film went to New York. Those closer to the West Coast had their film processed in Los Angeles. Go ahead and laugh.

Well Kodak lost a court case, and competition to process the film came about. Kodak was hurting. Then there were the E6 labs all over the place (think Ektachrome). Agfa, Ilford, Fuji, and others were eating Kodak’s lunch. Eventually this great film was discontinued after 74 years in production. Imagine any technology today lasting more than a couple years. It is still considered an archival standard for color photographs. Of course jpeg and tiff have a handle on digital images.

With the downturn of the product and the changes in photography, processing just was not up to the old Kodak standard. Slides were many times covered in trash from the chemistry. I guess it was cost cutting. Here is an example from the first photograph, a section of the sky in the upper left of the image. Notice the black blotches. Those are on the slide, folks. It came from processor like that. Yuk. Try to sell that to a customer.

In Photoshop you have two handy tools to clean up this junk. One is the Clone Stamp tool, and the other is the Healing Brush tool. They do similar things.

You set the Clone Stamp tool over an area of the image to copy. You select the area by doing an alt+left click. Then you place the tool over the trashy spot and click again, and the spot disappears. You can adjust the pixel dimensions of the tool with a slider to cover larger or smaller areas.

The Healing Brush is similar. Instead you just select the pixel size of the tool, maybe a little wider than the Clone Stamp. You then place it over the area to fix, and click. Photoshop interpolates what you want to happen and does it. It is very handy for sky, clouds, and water. You can fix blemishes in portraits too. If you are not satisfied, then try the Clone Stamp.

Here is about the same area of sky and clouds after I applied the clone and healing brush. It’s not perfect, and I may return to smooth it all out.

I thought I might sell some of my slides as stock images, but sadly, there is just too much trash like the specks and grunge.

If you are going to sell stock photos you better have technically superb photographs. This is my rookie season. Never sold stock before. Right now I am batting about 750. I think that may be pretty good. I am learning what they want. I am learning what sells. At least, I sure hope I am learning what sells.

Micro-stock agencies like Shutterstock do not want to see an image in a 1 mb file. Neither do their customers. They do not want to see digital artifacts like color compression, posterization, and grain. Posterization is common especially with jpegs, in oversaturated areas of color. It helps to shoot your original image in RAW and adjust your exposures, contrast, saturation, etc. before converting the image to its final jpeg format. Make sure your flower petal has detail and is more than just a big blob of color.

Even if my original photos of the park were near perfect, even if the grunge was not present, and the skies were clear blue and smooth, there is something else that disqualifies the images above. Take a look at the elephant holding the golf ball with its trunk. Click to enlarge it. What do you see?

Below is an enlarged section of the image showing the elephant trunk. What do you notice outlining the trunk, top and bottom? See that reddish outline on top and the blue outline on the bottom? It is called fringing. You may not even notice it in a casual view, but I guarantee the eagle eyes at the stock agencies will. It is not good enough to sell.

It was most likely introduced by my zoom lens that I use in macro mode to make the copies. Or it could be the processor in the D7500 itself. Don’t get all touchy. I am not saying bad things about Nikon. I love Nikon. But digital is digital. You ought to have seen this kind of thing when digital was a brand new technology.

Anyway, I have not figured out a way to easily remove it. For grins I converted the image to monochrome. Take a look below. There is still a fringe, less noticeable, but still present in the gray tones. These photographs were all about color. I do not think I want black and white here. I’ll have to consider it.

My best advice is make sure this kind of garbage is not in the original. Maybe I ought to spend more on the lens. Yeah. All I need is a new lens. Or maybe Adobe Lightroom has tools specifically created to de-fringe. I have seen a couple YouTube videos I may try. If they work, I will let you know.

Correcting these kinds of digital problems are tediously time consuming, and they drive me crazy. The return on my time invested is too small, and I need to move past this to other images.

Thank God for rejection notices. They really do help you improve. Seriously. No, I mean they really do. Really.


UPDATE: Yay! Found that there is a lens aberration tool both in Photoshop and Lightroom. Sadly, not out of the box in Photoshop Elements. BUT, there is and independent plugin. Here is video #1. And here is video #2. They show how to get rid of the fringe using the lens aberration tool. As I said, Elements does not have the tool available. This is where Elements + comes in. I am reviewing it now.

Good luck.