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We’ve Made PS Disasters Again!!

Dec 19

In News at 6:30am

This just makes me proud. All of us, actually, in our studio last week, observed a moment of silence, an interlude of quiet pride if you will, when the news arrived that we were once again featured in Photoshop Disasters.com,  that storied pantheon of post production goofs. Cali got a little choked up, truth be told.

Seems the gang over at PS disasters have well, issues with the more sensitive areas of the female anatomy. I’m still trying to figure out what they are. Sara, our absolutely lovely, graceful, athletic Icelandic model is perched on a rock in one of that northern island’s famed thermal lagoons. We helped her out there, and then, because I wanted to keep her out of the fading sunset light, and control the foreground area with flash, I asked her to see if she could comfortably, artfully crouch (We do ask ridiculous things, don’t we?) on this slippery, two foot square boulder poking out of the steaming, mineral laden waters of the lagoon. She popped down there as easily as a songbird arriving on a tree branch. If I had tried to assume this position, they would’ve had to medevac me out of there.

Okay, here’s the red circle image. Now, I’m still trying to figure this out. Do the guys over at disasters think her, as they put it, crotch, is missing? Or badly re-touched and manipulated somehow? Trust me, if the lovely, youthful Sara had arranged herself into a personal predicament, I would have pointed that out, and encouraged her to adjust. And, if she had been wearing, say, colorful, zebra striped underwears, and thus needed some re-touching, I do believe that’s a task the guys back here at the shop would have embraced in diligent fashion. But, we are shaking our heads a bit, because, well, see below.

Here’s a screen cap of our RAW D3x file in Adobe Camera Raw, and below is the untouched JPEG, right out of camera. Outside of a touch of color correction (very subtle) and a hint of saturation, we did….nothing to the picture.

Maybe that’s their issue. We did nothing, and we were supposed to? I’m unsure. One thing remains certain, though. I do suck at Photoshop. Me and the computer have never had a particularly comfortable relationship. So, I resolved this weekend, once again, to go to work on my post production skills, given the ignominy of once again being featured as a disaster, which of course is just a fulfillment of what virtually every nun who taught me said I would ultimately become. Some type of disaster. What do you think of the below? Do you think they’ll put a red circle someplace on this one?

This is the second time we’ve actually graced PS Disasters. The first summons they issued me was about a shot of Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson astride a tipsy balance beam in an Iowa cornfield, shot for Sports Illustrated. Her dad’s hand is seen, positioned under the beam to catch her if she fell.

It was a great opportunity for me to riff on the helter skelter nature of weekly magazine journalism. It appeared then, and I’m sure still now, that there are folks out there who think that the business of closing a news magazine on deadline is a considered, deliberate process, rife with nuanced debate, and delicately handled decisions. A parallel experience could perhaps be a classical music concert, held out of doors on a summer’s evening, where lovely notes mix with balmy breezes and fading sunset.

It’s nothing like that at all. It’s more like a screaming death metal concert at a beer sloshed mosh pit. It’s a business populated with intelligent, talented people who are stretched so thin, and so over-worked into a state of near delirium by the budgetary demands currently reigning in the world of publications that they might be hard pressed to find their ass with both hands on a good day. It’s a bruising endeavor fraught with frailty, ego, error, miscalculation, nastiness and outright bungling co-mingled freely with intrepidity of effort, dedication to excellence and moments of sheer, informational, story-telling magnificence. Much like, I don’t know, organized religion, for instance. My commentary on the above shot and the process of seeing it grace the pages of Sports Illustrated can be viewed here. It’s a lively read that actually has some interesting info.

Thanks to the gang at PS Disasters for one of what I would regard as our high moments of the year. More tk….:-)

56 Responses to “We’ve Made PS Disasters Again!!”

Ian says:

on December 22, 2011 at 10:54 am

Picture looked fine to me, she is leaning forward to hug her left knee, naturally her white top falls over part of the top of her left thigh. The coat makes it look like her body is vertical and the white top falling over the top of the thigh makes it look like the leg is thinner. Without the coat and the white top she would look just fine anatomically..

Charlie says:

on December 23, 2011 at 7:41 am

If the photography industry is like organized religion, I’m pretty sure that makes you the mad prophet – unwashed, wearing sack cloth, hair in all directions, alternatingly scorned and listened to. Joe McNalley, the Mad Prophet of the Unholy Church of the True Image!

Ryan K says:

on December 23, 2011 at 7:53 pm

Joe, is thre anyway you can post a version of the pic with fill light in ACR turned up to a ludicrously high value. This should show if the diagonal going from se to nw is leg or back of the coat. The JPEG doesn’t have the bit depth to do this. If its the back of the coat the thing makes sense (and shows where the confusion is coming from) if it’s leg then I’ll admit it looks pretty strange.

Matt says:

on January 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm

Seems to have been removed from the site.

Matt says:

on January 2, 2012 at 12:52 pm

d’oh, never mind on my last comment. I was looking at photoshopdisasters.com, not psdisasters.com…

Dafydd Hughes says:

on February 5, 2012 at 2:29 am

It’s Sunday morning and I am thoroughly enjoying reading Joe’s blogs. This entry in particular has put a big smile on my face.

Cheers.

Dav.

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