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Andrew Darlow

Author Archives: Andrew Darlow

Hello! For over 25 years I have consulted and taught on the topics of digital photography, workflow, image backup, printing and color management for individuals and corporations. I served as Editorial Director of Digital Imaging Techniques magazine for two years, where I wrote and edited numerous articles and reviews on the topics of digital and fine-art photography, inkjet printing, and Photoshop techniques. I've also conducted seminars across the United States at photo-related conferences including the Arles Photo Festival (Arles, France) and the PhotoPlus Expo (New York City), and have lectured and/or taught at institutions including Columbia University and the International Center of Photography (ICP) in New York City. My photography has been exhibited in numerous group and solo shows, and my work has been included in many photography publications. I'm the editor and founder of The Imaging Buffet Digital Magazine (https://imagingbuffet.com) and I publish a Photo Tips Newsletter, which includes tips and techniques related to fine-art printing and digital imaging. I've written four books (all related to photography), and my Amazon Author page can be found here:

1

How to Protect Any Camera LCD for about $10

Hello! I’ve recently begun to send out a weekly photo tips newsletter (you can sign up here to start receiving it). One of the recent tips that I shared was: Use Glass LCD Protectors on all of your LCD screens.

This may be one of those “I wish I had done that” tips for you. If you look at all of your camera LCD screens (the part on the back that displays video and/or stills), and if you see any scratches on any of them, you almost definitely could have avoided them by using a thin, self-adhesive glass LCD protector. That being said, I’ve been amazed at how the appearance thin scratches get reduced dramatically when I put an LCD protector on. To find them online, just search on your favorite camera store’s website or other retailer for “Glass Protective Screen Guard,” or “Glass Screen Protector,” or “Glass LCD Screen Protector” and your specific camera name. Cost will be about $5-30 each. I recommend buying two (they often come in packs of two), and try to work in a dust-free location. Also, keep the screen on by pressing the play button before you apply it so that you can more easily align it properly.

I would also remove the lens and place a body cap on the camera so that it’s easier to work on a flat surface. If at first you don’t succeed placing it properly, try, try again! I like to line it up on the left side of the lcd and carefully place it without touching the sticky part. In the video below, the person applying the glass cover shows how you can use the two alignment stickers. It may or may not be helpful on camera LCDs if your glass covers come with the stickers, but it’s worth trying.

My small Panasonic DMC-LX5 camera was saved thanks to an LCD Glass Protector (shown above after the damage was done). I dropped it at an amusement park onto pavement from about two feet. I’m amazed that the camera survived with just a cracked screen protector, and a small scratch to the metal near the Display button! Of course, if it had fallen a different way, the screen may not have made a difference, but using it might just save your camera one day.

The glass protectors go on like stickers and can be removed without damaging the LCD (I can’t personally guarantee that, but I have never had any problems after using them on my cameras, smartphones and tablets for at least the last five years). And if you want to be a “ninja,” you can measure the entire area of the screen and any additional border, and find a protector that might be for another camera because sometimes the glass covers made for specific cameras will cover most, but not all of the glass on the back of your camera.

Here’s a good video that shows how to install a glass screen protector on a Smartphone. I highly recommend using these on smartphones, especially since most people don’t have a neck strap or other type of strap connected to their smart phone.

UPCOMING LIGHTROOM WORKSHOP

I’m really looking forward to returning to the NJ Media Center in Berkeley Heights, NJ to teach this workshop on Lightroom workflow and editing:

Mastering Lightroom Workflow: From File Organization to Effortless Manipulations w/ Andrew Darlow

Date: Sun. 6/24/2018 

Lightroom Classic CC offers many powerful features, but without a good foundation and understanding of its tools, it’s easy to get frustrated. In this full day lecture and hands-on workshop, I will focus on helping you get the most from your images from start to finish.

Here’s what one participant had to say about the workshop: “I’m a full-frame DSLR camera user and I have a considerable amount of experience with Photoshop. However, I didn’t know how to organize my photographs properly, and I was getting frustrated trying to edit my photos inside of Lightroom. The full-day workshop had a lot of information, but it was very well presented, in an easy to follow way. Andrew is extremely professional and he managed a very diverse group, keeping everyone happy and on-course, which is not easy. I picked up a lot of editing tips and shortcuts that would have been much more time consuming for me to research online on my own.” – Branch Watkins

View the Workshop PDF

Photo Gallery and Info from the Epson Digital Couture Project Event in New York City, Plus News About the 2018 Event

Epson Digital Couture Event

At the 3rd Annual Epson Digital Couture Event. Designer: Daniela Hoehmann. Photo © Andrew Darlow

I’ve been photographing people as a professional photographer and writer for over 25 years, but I’ve always focused more on catalog, advertising, product reviews and beauty salon-related work than runway shows and similar events that often occur during Fashion Week in Manhattan in February every year. However, last year I could not pass up an opportunity to attend an invitation only special event sponsored by Epson called the Digital Couture Project. On February 6, 2018, the 4th Annual Epson Digital Couture Project is happening once again, and I expect it to be just as impressive as the 2017 event.

Since this is not a topic I cover a lot here on imagingbuffet.com, I think I should mention who I think will get the most from this article:

• Anyone who wants to see cutting-edge fashion from designers around the world. To me, it’s like a global art exhibition, but with the designers expressing their art through their textile designs, and with male and female models serving as moving canvases. Two words kept coming to mind as I was looking at the wide range of textiles, color palettes and unique approaches to fabric printing: “Truly Incredible!”

• Anyone who has an interest in any type of garment printing, from direct-to-fabric printing (using printers like Epson’s SureColor F2000 and F2100), to dye-sublimation transfer printing (using printers like Epson’s SureColor F9370, F6200 and F7200). Once you see how these machines work, it’s easier to understand the technology and capabilities. I’ve included a YouTube video from Epson below that shows how an image can go from artwork on a screen to a design on fabric by first printing on a dye-sublimation transfer paper (in this case using an Epson SureColor F6200 printer), and then using a heat press to transfer the art to a fabric.

The video below offers a sneak peek into the 2017 event, and I especially like how they interview the designers who created the clothing:

Epson created an excellent overview of the 2018 event, its designers and the printers used for the project HERE.

Also, below is a GIF (courtesy of Epson) showing many of the featured collections from the 2018 event, as well as a list of the designers who participated:

  1. Brazil – Lua Luá (Michele Gevaerd)
  2. Canada (Toronto) – Hayley Elsaesser
  3. Chile – Karyn Coo
  4. Ecuador – Stephanie Ruiz
  5. Guatemala – Eduardo Figueroa
  6. Mexico – Emilio Mata
  7. Paraguay – Ilse Jara
  8. Peru – Ana María Guiulfo
  9. Colombia – Lina Cantillo
  10. United States (Los Angeles) – Candice Cuoco
  11. United States (Miami) – Fernando Alberto
  12. United States (Philadelphia) – Thomas Jefferson University (Alexandra Pizzigoni and Patricia Franklin)
  13. United States (New York) – threeASFOUR (Gabriel Asfour, Angela Donhauser and Adi Gil)

A selection of the fashions created by the designers listed above for the 2018 Epson Digital Couture event

For More About the Tech Behind the Fashion

The Epson SureColor printers listed earlier can also be used to print on transfer paper that can then be used with a heat press to create dye-sublimation metal prints (extremely popular these days), jewelry, snowboards, skateboards and much more. This page has much more on that, including information on how to request a free printed sample. Below is one of the Epson SureColor printers that was set up at the Digital Couture Project. It shows a few designs printed on dye-sublimation media prior to transferring the images to one or more fabrics using a heat press.’

An Epson SureColor F9200 Printer at the Digital Couture Project event. Photo ©Andrew Darlow

Fashion designers and professionals (such as those who run print service bureaus), who are interested in Epson’s digital printing technologies can visit www.proimaging.epson.com for more information.

The Photographs

There are a few things that I should note about these photos. First, I used a Canon EOS 6D full frame 35mm DSLR for all of them. The 6D is outstanding in low light, allowing for the use of about ISO 1200-3200 with little to no visible noise in the shadow areas. If there is noise, it tends to be very “grain-like” without a lot of different colors, so it’s easy to reduce in Lightroom or other software. To increase my odds of getting sharp images, I used a combination of Shutter Priority Mode (set at between 1/1oo and 1/200 sec) with Auto ISO because I was relying on available light that was constantly changing, and not on or off-camera flash or LED lighting. I like the natural look that results from that approach, but it did mean that many of my photos had to be taken at ISO 3200 because the lens’ maximum (most open) aperture is f/4.5-6.3, depending on where in the zoom range the photos are being taken.

I also used just one lens for the entire shoot. It’s a beast of a lens due to its size and weight (approximately 4.1″ x 8.6″ (10.41 x 21.84 cm) and 4.33 lb (about 2 kg)), but I love it: the Sigma 50-500  f/4.5-6.3 APO DG HSM OS Lens For Canon EOS (it’s available in other mounts as well). It’s incredibly versatile due to its range, and I found the results to be very sharp at all focal lengths. As you can probably see from the images below, I enjoy taking photos from different angles, including from the back, as well as close-ups of items like shoes, which may or may not have been digitally printed like all of the other clothing. Some of the footwear by some of the designers was definitely printed digitally, which you can see in the video overview posted above. I believe that taking photos from behind a model, or when just one out of three of the models is facing forward, works very well because clothing is usually designed with attention to all of the “camera angles.”

And in case you are wondering here is the photo info for the image that opens this article and that shows designs by Daniela Hoehmann: 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 3200.

Designer: Susan Wagner, 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 3200, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designer: Ricardo Pava, 1/200 sec, f/5, ISO 1600, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designer: Sarah Richards, 1/200 sec, f/5.6, ISO 3200, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designer: Vanesa Krongold, 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 3200, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designer: Susan Wagner, 1/125 sec, f/8, ISO 1250, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designers: Daniel Del Barco and Sonia Chang, 1/100 sec, f/5, ISO 2500, Photo © Andrew Darlow

Designers: Miguel Moyano and Alex Polo, 1/100 sec, f/5.6, ISO 2000, Photo © Andrew Darlow

(Right Photo) Designer: Leonardo Mena, 1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 3200, Photo © Andrew Darlow

6

Upcoming Half Day Lightroom 4 Workshop in NJ with Andrew Darlow

For more than two years I’ve been teaching photographers and other artists how to get the most from Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, including editing, organizing, presenting and printing images using the application. It’s a very powerful tool, but it definitely takes time to learn, and Lightroom 4 brings with it many new features and a new processing engine.

In the upcoming weeks and months I will be teaching some Lightroom workshops in New Jersey. Here are some details and a link to more info on one of them. I will post information on some others as they get closer (my workshop/events page will generally have all of them listed):

Class Title: LIGHTROOM 4 WORKFLOWS: How to Organize, Retouch and Print Your Images

Location: duCret School of Art, Plainfield, NJ

Date: Sat. April 7, 2012
Time: 10AM-2PM

Fee: $50 ($39 for those who register by April 4)

A full description and online registration information is available here: https://lr47.eventbrite.com/

darlowworkshopm1

Andrew Darlow conducting a Lightroom workshop in Princeton, NJ

To show an example of what I’ll be covering, this particular image will be shown step-by-step from raw capture to the final edited image. I think it shows what’s possible when you use Lightroom’s Develop Module to recover highlight data and use the application’s selective adjustment options:

a_darlow-0013-2

Nikon D800, 6400 ISO (Before Lightroom 4.1RC adjustments) photo © Andrew Darlow

Nikon D800, 6400 ISO (After Lightroom 4.1RC adjustments) photo © Andrew Darlow

Nikon D800, 6400 ISO (After Lightroom 4.1RC adjustments) photo © Andrew Darlow