Posts Tagged ‘photography’

Hand-crafted JPEGs

June 20, 2009

Carl Rogers’ Operation Emboss has been proceeding at a lively pace. As each JPG is watermarked, we are closer to the day when we see wwtl.com “lift its ban on JPG file-sharing,” which means we can start putting them on bit torrent.

Even better (“a nice byproduct”): he is giving each and every photo personal attention.

All photos are hand-touched, one by one.

What makes this even more special? It gives me the chance to re-evaluate*each* photograph and judge their picture quality. If a picture does not have the right colour[sic] balance (shades, light, etc.), I correct it! As Operation Emboss continues, you may notice one of your favourite US Federal Route or Mexican Autopista w/ better image quality.

This is more dramatic news than the embossing itself. Just think of all those photos on wwtl.com, but with better quality! With the tricks Photoshop can do, there’s no limit to what could be fixed in those pictures.

Photo enhancement process, as seen in TV and movies.

Photo enhancement process, as seen in TV and movies.

Stuff that used to be affordable only to CSI departments is now a $400 desktop app, and in a couple years will be free (ad-supported) on the web. My favorite CSI episode was when there was a murder on a United flight, and the blonde chick took a picture of a Dodgers game from the LA Times, zoomed in on the retina of the third-base coach, got the reflection of the aircraft, zoomed in on that through a first-class window, bounced off the bulb of a champagne glass, and identified the killer by a telltale tooth filling. Enhance. Enhance. Enhance.

These days you can even rotate a picture in 3-D. Before: dang, got a photo from the wrong side.

Whoops, took her pic from behind. Too late to fix that... or is it?

Whoops, took her pic from behind. Too late to fix that... or is it?

Then apply the 3-D rotation:

How to rotate your photo in 3-D

How to rotate your photo in 3-D

And the result:

Same photo, rotated 180 deg around Z axis.

Same photo, rotated 180 deg around Z axis.

The old-fashioned photography skills (lighting, composition, framing, exposure, focus, etc.) matter less and less every day, because it can all be fixed in Photoshop.

Here’s the top 5 list of photos I’m looking forward to Carl Rogers making even better, at wwtl.com:

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