Loupedeck Tag

Or How I Learned To Hate The Plugin. I use a number of plugin programs on my computer that ride on the back of Lightroom, Photoshop, and Photoshop Elements. Most of the time they are tame strings of electricity that do useful things; make images look like paintings or old-fashioned photographs or intensify colours. One set sharpens everything without making ragged halos. In some cases the effects are naff but you only have to see them once and then just don't press that button again. Most of them are signals imported via discs or internet connection - visible enough on the screen but ephemeral in real terms. You buy what they do instead of buying what they are. However, one piece of gear is all too real - the Loupedeck+ editing console. It's been making life easier on Lightroom and Photoshop for two years now. I can breeze through a dance show or an exhibition shoot with my eyes on the screen and my hands on the buttons and knobs - or at least I could Saturday. By Sunday it had all...

Now's the time to stop and make use of something that Adobe has offered for years; the ability to control individual colour channels. If you never fiddled with them - and I admit that heretofore I never did - the newfound facility with which they can be altered on the Loupedeck Plus means that a lot of images that were either dull or overcooked can now be saved. You may have deleted material in the past due to the wounds in just one colour when you could have gone in there surgically and sewed it up. The colour rotaries are located just under the P buttons that deal with cropping formats. At least these are sweet to deal with - they are coded with a dot of the colour that they deal with. Eight of them from red to magenta. It's really a better way to present these options than the standard Lightroom panel. You tap on the left for three criteria: hue, saturation, or luminance. And then scroll the wheel up and down to add or subtract the effect. Here's an example...

I used to like secret codes when I was a kid - letters are written so that no-one else could read them. No-one ever had anything secret to say, but we all knew dynamite ways to do it. That's sometimes what I feel like when confronted with the buttons on digital devices. They can be marked with F or Fn for " function ", or C or CU for " custom". Occasionally you'll get a "Ctrl " marking or a " P " and then it's a case of diving into the manual to see what the designers actually meant. We all appreciate the extended functionality of cameras and the fact that we can switch them around to match where our minds have gone and where our fingers can go to...

Today's column was to be a report on a piece of stock from the Stirling Street Store taken with my portable studio and the new coloured backdrops. That can wait. Something wonderful has intervened. I arranged with my family for a Father's Day gift to be ordered through the shop - a Loupedeck editing console. Sam told me yesterday that it had arrived and would I like to take it home. Would I...

Being the old guy in charge of the film and book desk was a good deal at Photo Live events - I got a chance to scoot off occasionally and look at the other exhibits. Now you'd think that I might have seen everything before in the shop, but remember that there are representatives of firms that I don't normally get to meet and they've brought the newest of their offerings. So even I can be wowed by things. Before I go, a word about the Analog Line - the film business. To the surprise of many and the delight of others, film sales are tootling right along very well. There were enquiries and sales all day from our stock box and a half dozen people seeking film and developing information. Of course, for a lot of this I referred them to Fitzgerald's Photo Laboratory - the third stand down - but I was delighted to talk to the two ladies who enquired about normal grain and plate grain films. They knew what they wanted to do and pretty much how...