I’m sure you have heard about the Google Nik software suite offer by now. …no? well then, get this… It turns out that Google has reduced the price on the entire Nik software suite to an affordable $149. The Suite includes all the famous and popular plugins: Define 2, Sharpner Pro 3, HDR Efex 2, Silver Efex Pro 2,Viveza 2 and Color Efex Pro 4. Works with Adobe Photoshop CS, Adobe Lightroom and Aperture.
Even better, if you already own a earlier version of the suite or just one of the 6 plug-ins, you can get the entire suite for free. If you have registered your product, you should have a mail from google by now in you inbox with a download link. If you don’t, check your spam folder, that’s where i found my email from Google.
I really look forward to take some time and play with the different plugs in from Nik.
Most of my images takes a trip through this suite in one way or another. I use Perfect Effects for the final tweaks and stylization. I particularly like Tonal Contrast, the Big Softy and HDR look Natural. I have used Perfect Resize with greats success a few times. And Perfect Black & White is quite amazing if you ask me. This version works of course with Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture. But even better, this suite also is a stand-alone collection of software, meaning you can use this with out Photoshop etc. Just launch Perfect Layers and you are good to go. It’s a great plugin to have and I recommend you at least give it a trial – free of course. Prices starts at $79. Actually, now you can download Perfect Effects 4 for free!! And a bunch of cool presets as well. No charge. Gotta love that!
The last plugin I use is one I found recently. Its made by the good folks at HDRsoft who makes the well-known and highly recommended Photomatix HDR software. This little plug-in is made for Lightroom 4, and what it does is combining your selected brackets to a 32 bit tif file, that you can edit in Lightroom, making your Lighroom 4 software a great tool for HDR shots. It does that without going into the main Photomatix program or Photoshop for that matter. Lightroom 4 has the ability to work with 32 bit files. The advantage of a 32 bit file is that it gives you a +10/-10 f-stop range, that you can control in great detail by using the brush adjustment tool in Lightroom. It’s quick to use, and gives a result that looks better than what Photoshop CS6 can do in my opinon.
The plugin costs $29 but if you already own Photomatix, you get it for free.
Click the headings for a link to the download site.
We had a “short” heat wave up here last week. Temperatures around the 5°C /40°F. That got things melting, but sure enough, it didn’t last long, so now we are left with some extremely dirty looking snow piles, black and brown from the salt, sand and exhaust. It’s not very pretty to look at. But of course being in Northern Ontario, we probably still have a snowstorm or two to deal with before it’s all said and done. Currently we are back below freezing but its going the right way. It is so nice to feel the heat from the sun as it gets higher in the sky.
Last week I posted a winter shot from Bridal Veil Falls. I thought I would keep going and post some pictures I took in the spring of 2011. They are not exactly fine art shots, but I thought they would tell a story of the spring thaw anyway. They are shot in May, and I’m sure by then the spring thaw has peaked, but it was still a cool to see the amount of water that’s going over that edge, especially when you compare that to a shot taken in late…which I’ll be posting next
weekend ehm.. time.
The opening shot is taken from one of two viewing platforms that over looks the falls. I think this particular one is the lower one. This time of year, I would not go any closer to the falls, because my equipment and I would get absolutely soaked. As you walk down the metal stairs towards the trail, that by the way goes from the falls to downtown Kagawong, you will feel the cold mist coming from the falls on your face. Standing at the bottom of the stairs on the trail looking back, right around that corner are the falls and a spring shower if you get to close… The mist is clearly visible, and even standing here, you can feel it. The trail is borderline muddy, the stairs are wet and slippery, so hang on to the rail and wear practical shoes if you go for a peak your self. And you should…
The Kagawong River or creek runs out in the big Lake Huron, and I found 4 shots in my library that was taken from the same spot right in sequence I put them together in PS and saved it as an animated gif. You may have to click on the image to view the animation. It kind of gives you an idea how this little river or creek really comes to life when spring arrives.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hello folks. Yes I know its been awhile, and I’m kicking my self for not getting it done. Here’s the beginning of attempting to post more regularly.
So spring time in Northern Ontario is to me, one of the most interesting times of the year. The colors of the landscape goes from brownish grey/black to a more vibrant green color. The mood of people changes as the light returns, days are getting longer, and warmer. Of course this is the time of year where people with allergies suffer – I know I do. For about 6-8 weeks my nose and eyes will be itchy, runny. I’ll be sneezing up a storm, but it’s still my favorite time of year.
And at times, nature likes to throw a curve ball, and she did just that a couple of weeks ago. We had an amazing record-breaking March, with temperatures up to 25°C for almost a week. – That’s
pretty good frigggin awesome for N. Ontario standards. So of course every tree, bush and weed plant gets a wake up call – alrighty then, it’s that time of year, let’s get started. So the buds are budding weeks before normal, that grass is green at a time when it supposed to be, some flowers are already out, such as tulips, which turned out to be a really bad idea.
Summer in march is not gonna last, not up here, and of course, Blammo – A week with cold temperature below freezing puts an efficient hold on everything growing. On top of that, 10-15 cm of wet snow to really push progress down again. Tulips dies, fruit trees are very vulnerable at this time of year, and I’m sure many fruit growers has been hit bad. Time will tell.
The image above is shot with my 105mm macro lens, the subject is my lilac bush, and as usual, a click on the images will make it even bigger.