Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Revisiting Past Images

Many of you know that the software we use to process our images gets updated every couple of years. Not to mention new software seems to come out all the time. Not only does the software change but your vision as an artists changes with time as well. Have you considered going back to photographs you have taken in the past and “re-editing” them based on software and/or vision changes?

Recently I took another look of a Great Smoky Mountain shoot I did from 2010. There were as many as 6 images that previously had not seen the light of day. It isn’t that they were bad but rather I had not realized the potential of the images. Since 2010 I have gotten the Nik Software Suite which gives some tremendous options. Silver efex Pro II for example allows you to easily and effectively convert images to black and white. Not to mention the Lightroom update with Lightroom 4. The highlights slider alone in that update makes taking a look at past images a must. Don’t forget about the Photoshop update to CS6 either. All of these are tools that can help you realize the potential of past images. 
Your ability to see the images differenly can change as well.  For me I know that I view tonality and image contrast much different than I did even last year.  The changing of software, hardware, and artistic vision make it worth the time to revisit your past archives.
Warning: While you might want to spend some time looking at your past images do not dwell there. The only way to truly improve is to get out and shoot.


  1. I especially agree with your last comment: The only way to improve is to get out and shoot.

    However, looking at past work (whether photos or paintings) can lead to improvements just as you found. Nice improvements on these photos, Jason.

    As for improving old paintings, some still resonate as "good" to me. The bad ones are beginning to be painted over...LOL...much like you are "painting" over old photo images here. Difference is you still have the "original" while I destroy the "original." ;)

  2. I shudder at the thought of destroying my originals. Thanks for the comment.