This is another HDR image from Brookside Gardens. And, this week’s “How To Do Stuff” (HTDS) is a very simple method for lens correction using Adobe Photoshop.
I’ve included a few visuals to detail the steps I used to transform the image below into what you see above. Since what our eyes actually see is not always what is captured by the camera, I usually try to correct the distortion that’s introduced with wide angle lenses.
There are many times when perfect verticals are not the best representation. So I’ve kept very slight leaning angles at the edges to give a feeling of height and depth. But it really all comes down to personal preference and artistic tastes. Since I tend to lean toward realism, I always take that last extra step to straighten the verticals . . . except with a purely natural setting, that is.
- Lens Correction – Lining it up!
I like to use the simplest methods that I can find but some trial and error is still necessary to get everything just right. To get to this screen, go to Filter > Lens Correction. I’ve added a few superfluous comments for clarity. You can click on the image below for a short video of this tutorial.
I prefer to use the Custom tab and usually only need to adjust three variables; Remove Distortion, Vertical Perspective and Horizontal Perspective. This gets everything lined up pretty nicely.
- Lens Correction – Straighten Up!
Since this type of image usually starts out with no true vertical lines, my final Lens Correction step is to find an area where a true vertical will give the most realistic result. I’ve used the Straighten Tool to define my vertical as shown above. The exploded area shows my selected “post”. This will shift the right leaning image to more of what our eyes actually see.
The final image still has a slight bow in the posts that could be corrected using Free Transform. But I can live with a mild bit of distortion.
If you have Adobe Photoshop and aren’t afraid to play around a bit, you can come up with just about any transformation possible. In a future HTDS post, I’ll show how exaggerating certain areas of an image can actually make it look more realistic. Stay tuned!
Equipment used: Nikon D700 with 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5 set at 20mm, f/22, ISO 400. Manfrotto 190XPROB with 486RC2 ball head.