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Why Eye?

Wed Mar 21, 2001 - 11:55 AM EST - By Alan Graham

The Proof is in the Pictures

These photos were taken of a lovely little town in Virginia, called Staunton (pronounced Stan•tun). It is one of those towns that dates back 250 years, has cobblestone roads, beautiful stately old homes, friendly people, and enough charm to choke a horse. If you are driving through Virginia, I suggest you visit.

Each image here has been reduced to 290x225 to improve load-time, but each is linked to their 640x480 original. If you have the time I suggest you check them out. They are quite impressive. On the left you will see the original image, just as it was taken. To the right, the image as it was adjusted in Photoshop. There are some purists who don't think you should change a photo, but that is not a debate I care anything about. In many cases this is about personal preference.

A good picture and an excellent place to dine, The Pullman Restaurant. Took this image at about 4:30 in the afternoon. Simply adjusted the curves and the color levels to bring out more of the reds, yellows and browns of the building. As I mentioned earlier, the E2 has a tendency to "cool" the images. I don't think you can dispute that the image actually looks warmer and it only took about 2 minutes to make the change. With a little extra time I could also improve the look of the sky by toning it down.

The Pullman use to be part of the train station. Back when the rails were the only way to get from city to city, this was quite the happening place. Behind the Pullman is the actual railroad (still in use). There is an old iron foot bridge you can use to get from one side of the tracks to the other. What I did with this image is use the color level settings to bring out a little more blue in the sky, bring out the reds and browns of the woods, and enhance the green paint of the bridge. By working with the curves, I was also able to enhance and bring out the shadows.

I was walking by a cute little shop on Beverly Street (the old main street) and I just had to catch her with my E2. It isn't a bad shot without any editing, but I wanted to bring out a little more of her yellow and red colors. Also, just by making some simple color adjustments, I was able to give her tail feathers a little more depth. Wonder where they get the term hen-pecked?

While continuing my walk down Beverly street, I ran across this staircase behind an old wooden door with a very dirty window and very little light. I adjusted the E2 setting to "Lighten" before taking the shot through the window. When editing I adjusted the curves to tone down the brightness and then used my color levels to bring out the natural colors of the wood. Not bad huh?

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