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In the Darkroom: Lightroom

If you take photos, you’ve probably thought about your approach to backing up your images. It’s challenging, and I haven’t figured out my ideal solution. I haven’t worried too much about it because I do have backups, and while I don’t want to jinx myself here, if I were to experience a hard drive failure it wouldn’t be a catastrophe. But it is something I need to get down to a consistent overall strategy. To that end, I was spending some time today in my Lightroom catalog…and got distracted.

I returned to photography in 2016 in DC with the fantastic Fujifilm X100T. I’ve since moved to Seattle and gone further down the Fujifilm X Series rabbit hole. In my catalog I spotted a fairly boring attempt to get an “old meets new” photo in DC - old rowhouses in the 14th and U street dwarfed by a modern apartment building. Again, it was a boring image. But when I looked at it today, I considered some ways I could use Lightroom to make it a little less boring.

Here’s the original image:

Old Meets New, DC, near 14th and U. X100T. Boring, right?

Old Meets New, DC, near 14th and U. X100T. Boring, right?

In the image below, I’ve used the Auto perspective correction tool and increased the shadows by 50. I think it’s a better image.

Same picture. I’ve corrected the perspective (Auto) and increased the shadows by 50. I think it’s a better image.

Same picture. I’ve corrected the perspective (Auto) and increased the shadows by 50. I think it’s a better image.

In the image below, I again corrected the perspective, but this time I increased the shadows in the tone curve area. I’m still working out the difference between the sliders in the main section of the Development module vs. the sliders in the tone curve section. For example, both areas have sliders for shadows, but we can see that they affect the photo differently.

DC rowhouses tone curve shadows plus 50 (1 of 1).jpg

In the following image, I increased the main shadows and increased the darks in the tone curve section. I’m not sure whether I prefer this image or the second image. Regardless, it doesn’t hurt to revisit old photos and edits.

Washington, DC, early 2016. Fujifilm X100T.

Washington, DC, early 2016. Fujifilm X100T.