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In this course, photographer and author Ben Long explores the art and the craft of creating beautiful, archival-quality inkjet prints. The course looks at the anatomy of a print job: how a printer works, how to adjust and prepare your image to get the best results, and what happens to your photo in its journey from pixels to paper.
After a discussion of how to choose a printer, the course covers the process of preparing both black and white and color images using Adobe Photoshop. Ben describes how to take images from looking good onscreen to being properly adjusted for best results on paper, covering details such as sizing, sharpening, and color management.
With photographer and master framer Konrad Eek, Ben explores the creative decisions that photographers should address before printing. What size print? How does print size relate to the message of the photo and to the space where the photo will be displayed? What kinds of paper choices do you have, and how does your photo's content relate to the paper you choose?
The course also describes how to properly evaluate a print and how to handle common challenges that crop up during the printing process.
Noise, of course, is the speckly stuff that can appear in your image, especially when you're shooting at high ISO and usually there's more noise in your shadows than your other areas. Noise reduction is grouped here into the Detail tab in Camera Raw alongside sharpening. And in most image editing applications you'll find noise reduction and sharpening grouped together, because there are operations that you typically want to perform at the same time. The reason being, noise reduction usually has a softening effect on your image because the way noise is reduced is to apply very purposeful localized blurs to your image.
Also sharpening can exaggerate noise, so you want to be balancing your sharpening efforts with your noise reduction efforts. I am not actually going to spend much time on noise reduction in this course, because these days if you're working with a new camera you're probably not facing a lot of bad noise issues. Today's SLRs and even today's higher-end point and shoot cameras do a fantastic job of managing noise. If you would like to know more about noise reduction and see some more advanced examples of it, checkout my Foundations of Photography Low Light course where in we take a deep look at noise.
For the sake of this discussion I am just going to leave it at this noise reduction, if your image needs it, would be performed right now in Camera Raw at the same time that I'm doing my input sharpening step. If you're working with JPEG then you would need perform noise reduction later in your workflow. Usually you would probably want to try your noise reduction right at the beginning of your process, because if it doesn't work you would probably abandon the image, and for that you would use the noise reduction filters in Photoshop or even go to a third party noise reduction plug-in.
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