There are a lot of photos posted in LumberJocks that are barely passable for letting everyone see what you want everyone to see. I use Irfanview as my default photo editor. It is not Photoshop by any stretch, but with Irfanview (a free program) I can improve a dark picture in 10 seconds or less. I tested this last week by improving a project photo where I couldn’t see much detail and I emailed it to the LumberJock member that posted it. He agreed it was an improvement and replaced his original with the improved version.
This is a different example with step by step description of the 10 seconds or so it takes to make the improvement: (Prep work is to open Irfanview, then switch to your browser and get the dark photo onscreen)(more about getting Irfanview after this example):
Rright-click on the dark photo and choose Copy Image to copy the dark photo to your clipboard, then Alt-Tab to switch from browser window to Irfanview and Ctrl-V to paste the dark photo into Irfanview. In Irfanview’s menu system, the feature I use for this is under Image/ColorCorrection, but I prefer the keyboard shortcut Alt-I,C. This is where it took me:
COLOR CORRECTION DIALOGUE:
Unless the colors are way off because of fluorescent bulbs or whatever, we only need to use two sliders: Gamma and then Contrast, both slowly slid to the right until you like what you see.
PHOTO IMPROVED USING GAMMA & CONTRAST SLIDERS:
Click Okay and then save the photo (or you’ll lose the changes). Since we copied the dark picture off the screen with the right click, it doesn’t exist on your hard drive yet. So use Alt-F,S and choose a hard drive location for saving it. Then delete the dark pick from your projects page and then upload the improved one the same way you did the first time.
This is the photo as saved on the hard drive and ready to upload:
If you’re editing photos from your hard drive before uploading to LumberJocks (as opposed to Ctrl-C and Ctrl-V to get it into Irfanview), you can save pics to their original location with the same or a different filename (using Ctrl-S) or you can save in a new location (Alt-F,S).
Now… getting Irfanview is easy enough: google “Irfanview” and go to their website. Download the latest version and install it. Then download their Plug-Ins/Add-Ons and install them.
They don’t take a lot of space and I like Irfanview for so many different reasons (only one was shown so far: improving dark photos) that I make it my default photo viewer for jpg gif tif etc
The following examples deal more with color than darkness. The procedure is identical except the first 2 seconds in the Color Correction dialogue screen I moved the blue slider a little to the right (to about 45) and then the red slider a little to the left (down about 15) before teasing Gamma and Contrast sl. to the right.
Original, as captured onscreen from a blog and inserted into Irfanview:
Irfanview’s Color Correction dialogue after a few seconds of adjustments, as described above (blue up to ~45, red down -15, then Gamma and Contrast each nudged up a little):
After clicking OK…
then save the corrected image (I suggest overwriting the pic w/the improved one) and then upload as the substitute pic in LumberJocks.
-- Spence in Skokie, IL