Tech Talk ...Post-Processing

I am not a "geek," but I started on a CPM Osborne 1 "portable" in 1981. I worked with a Windows PC before Win95. One day in 1987, a friend put her brand new Macintosh SE on my desk. It just worked. I just worked on my work. I still work on a PC when I have to. But most of the time, I just work on my work - on a Mac.

I fumbled in the dark and smelled hypo for 6 years, starting in 1973. I took a long sabbatical for grad school at Duke, plus starting a career and a family. I built a better darkroom in 1995. I always used PlusX 4x5 / TMaxRS and BTZS zone system for negatives. In 1999, a good friend and great photographer named Ansen Seale (check him out), saw some of my prints and showed me how to scan them into Photoshop. He said I would convert.

I did, in stages. I found a used Apple G4 to scan negatives at 2400 dpi/16 bit into Photoshop, and worked them in layers (before there were adjustment layers). I bought an Epson 1280 and learned to print b/w with Piezography inks. The prints almost made me happy, but "not quite good enough" is not. The Epson R2400 changed all that, and changed me.

I now use a 13" MacBook Pro (still not retina) with my old 23" Cinema display - really, it's good enough. I now shoot RAW in the new Nikon D750, and I am experimenting with ETTR and OneZone ODE methods.  I import DNG into Adobe Lightroom 6 (I was a beta tester for v. 1, and I love almost everything about this software). A few images still go out-and-in-and-back to Photoshop for local adjustment (thank you, Jeff Schewe). The R2400 has not died yet, and the Digital Dog profiles are still right on. The web galleries here come out of Lightroom and Juicebox Pro. The base web work is Dreamweaver. If you want to know more, just email me.


For creative imagination, digital is so much better than film! ...technically, archivally, artistically, aesthetically better. With film, I was always trying to make the materials do what I wanted. Now, I do not have any excuses. I focus on how the image can match what I already saw in my imagination when I clicked the shutter. I can't make excuses for the failures when they don't. Sometimes, I get even lucky and get more than a snapshot.

David Meriwether ...photographer

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