After-Before Friday (Week 1): Now a Community Post!

After-and-Before Friday Post HeaderHighlighting the creative magic behind post-processed photos

Today’s community post kicks off what I hope will become a fun and educational weekly forum on post-processing. Robin Kent of photographybykent has been instrumental in getting this idea off the ground and I am delighted that he has submitted a set of images for this inaugural post.

A Few Words About the Forum.

After-Before Friday posts provide an opportunity for photographers (amateur and seasoned, alike) to share their photos, and if they wish, their post-processing decisions. The photos will provide a fun “wow” factor; the post-processing descriptions, the “how.” The goal is to enjoy a behind-the-scenes look at others’ work while picking up helpful ideas along the way that each of us can use as we work with our own photos.

Each Friday, I will happily post your after and before photos with a link back to your blog. If you wish to share the details of how you processed your photo, simply publish a post on your blog anytime before my post time on Friday. Want to participate? Guidelines are after the photo galleries.

Image from my post, Weekly Photo Challenge: Letters

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Lightroom 5.4: 1. Graduated filter to decrease the exposure, highlights, and shadows and increase the contrast, clarity, saturation, and sharpness of the top third of the image. 2. Adjustment brush to increase contrast, shadows, clarity, saturation, and sharpness of the marquee. 3. Oval radial filter over the marquee and (a) reduced exposure over the surrounding area by inverting the mask, and (b) deselected invert mask and increased the red and the yellow luminance of the marquee 4. Cropped and rotated the image. 5. Applied a post-crop (highlight priority) vignette.

Submitted by Robin Kent, photographybykent

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Robin says: This image, of the Iwo Jima Memorial on a hill across the river from Washington DC, was taken as the sun was setting behind me. The dim lighting was complicated by a sky with dark clouds and bright open sections and a dark main subject.  I exposed to capture at least some detail across the entire dynamic  range so the actual scene could be restored during post-processing.

Note the presence of the bystanders and dog on the right in the before photo and their absence in the after. In his post, Robin raises an interesting question about the ethics of post-processing that will likely lead to some lively debate. Visit Robin’s full post to read more about his photos and the question he raises.

Please click on the links of those who contribute to read their full posts and to like and/or comment on their respective photos – they’d love to have you visit!

So what do you think of the new ABFriday forum?
Feel free to leave your thoughts and suggestions in the comment section.

The How-To’s:

  • To submit your images:
    • Resize each image so that the longest side is no longer than 1000 pixels. (If you have trouble with this, let me know and I’ll gladly help out at my end.)
    • Rename your image files. Call them whatever you wish, but please include “after” in the first filename and “before” in the second.
    • If you typically watermark your images on your blog, don’t forget to watermark the resized images.
    • Email the images to me at by Wednesday at midnight Eastern Standard Time (I am currently 4 hours GMT).
    • In your email:
      • Be sure to include the name of your blog and its web address.
      • If you wish, include a sentence or two describing something about the images (where it was taken, why it was taken, etc) or something in general about the processing (what post-processing program(s) you used, perhaps?)
  • (Optional, but encouraged) On YOUR blog:
    • Write a post describing your post-processing steps. How much detail you go into is entirely up to you.  (If you don’t wish to write a post, no worries – it will still be fun to see your photos.)
    • Tag your post with ABFriday so it can be searched for in the Reader.
  • I will schedule my post to publish on Friday mornings at 8 a.m. Eastern Standard Time. If you’ve written a post, schedule yours for the same time or earlier, so that others will be able to find it when they click on the link posted here.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me directly.

16 thoughts on “After-Before Friday (Week 1): Now a Community Post!

  1. Love your processing of the marquee shot! Very creative and the dramatic effect of the output is fantastic. Great use of vignetting and selective adjustments. I’ll be doing my best to contribute to this series in the future!


    • Thanks, Ben! Post-processing this one was definitely not a straight-lined path. I had a lot of backs-and-forths before I reached the point I was happy with. It’s a great old theater in a small town of 3000 people in upstate New York. Instead of playing trailers from upcoming movies before the featured movie began, it ran a montage of photos submitted by townspeople of local events. It was heartwarming! And I look forward to having you participate. As you know, I’m a huge fan of your stunning photography 🙂


      • That sounds like a lovely gesture by the theater! Experimenting in Lightroom is half the fun, and it’s just so easy to do. I probably spend a little too long with some images! I think you definitely ended up with the best possible outcome, a fantastic effort 🙂


  2. Great edits Stacy I like how they’re presented too :).. It does sound an interesting challenge… 🙂 We have a wedding shortly so my time is limited but see what I can squeeze in


    • Would love to have you participate, Glynn! Doesn’t have to be fancy. If you don’t have the time for a full post, feel free to simply submit the photos 🙂


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