I’m not a doughnut person. I can understand why people like them, though. Obviously, they like how they taste. But doughnuts are also fun. There’s a lot of creativity, art, and food know how that goes into them.

Are you familiar with Voodoo Doughnut? If you aren’t, I bet you’ve seen their famous pink boxes without knowing the brand name.

When I go to Portland, I usually end up walking in the neighborhood near the Voodoo Doughnut shop. I’m not sure if there are other locations. The one I’m talking about is in the Pearl district, or near it. There’s almost always a line. Also, whenever I post shots of their store or mention them, I have to look up whether it’s doughnut, doughnuts, donut, or donuts.


Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

I like that photo. I didn’t like it as much when I first took it. I was using a fairly wide angle lens. Fujifilm’s X Series kit lens, the 18-55. On Fuji’s APS-C crop sensor, 18-55 is roughly equivalent to a full frame 27-82. Warning, I’m bad at math. I was probably shooting close to the 18mm side of things. Yes, I was.


Screen Shot 2019-12-07 at 6.55.55 PM.png

At that focal length, you get some distortion. Photographers use wide angles all the time. Some are really good at minimizing the distortion, or keeping it to an area that will get cropped out. Others are good at knowing how some of Lightroom’s and Photoshop’s perspective tools can correct the distortions.

I’m not good with wide angles and tend to shy away from them. And when I first took these photos I didn’t experiment a lot with the Transform tools. It felt a little like cheating, which is ridiculous. But over the years I’ve gotten better with Lightroom and its Transform tools. I still prefer working with prime lenses in ranges that I don’t have to think too much about distortion. My main interest is documentary photography – my rule for that is absolute minimal post processing – maybe a little exposure/shadows/highlights and an occasional basic crop if it’s not altering the image. But it’s not a bad idea to understand Transform while also learning more about what causes distortion and how to deal with it. (I need to do the latter.)

The photo above originally was closer to something like this photo.


Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

See the differences in the buildings’ lines/angles? Of course you do! Compare the Theatre signs in both, at the left rear of the image.

Transform is in the Develop module. I think people sometimes have Lightroom configured differently – mine is pretty far down in the tools section. Let’s go back to that first image.


Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

Here’s what my Transform section looks like for that photo. Scale is new to me. I won’t try to talk about it because I don’t really know what it’s doing to the photo. I just experimented with it a little bit on the photo above to help me retain some parts of the image.


Lightroom Transform tool in the Develop module.

Lightroom Transform tool in the Develop module.

Here’s one more. And a very easy quiz. Did I use the Transform tools on it?


Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.

Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, April 2017.