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First Draft: Ready to go!

John asked what did he original Ready to go! look like and I’ll oblige now. Showing what the original photo looks like is akin to showing what the first draft of a written essay or post reads like. Sometimes the image comes out perfectly in the camera but that’s rarely the case. At the very least light levels have to be balanced and if resizing for publication online then the resized image has to be sharpened.

Hover over the image below to see what the original shot looked like. Hopefully this will work for RSS readers but if it doesn’t, visit the blog and leave your mark here!

Notice how I rotated the image? I had to reconstruct the bumper on the right of the picture, as well as filling in the gaps at the other corners of the photo. Tree branches and leaves are easy enough, as is the relatively solid black texture of the tar on the road, but the bumper was difficult, and the shaded area of the building on the left presented me with a few extra minutes of clicking to get right.

Want to see more “First Draft” posts? I can’t promise to do many, but if you have a compelling reason why you’d like to see the original of a photo I’ll do my best to help!

Hosted on Flickr

PS. Bryan – you might recognise the CSS. I took it from the button of doom you did! Hope you don’t mind!

PPS. Treasa has posted a tutorial of how she worked on two photos with steps in Photoshop to get the desired effect. Nice!

By Donncha

Donncha Ó Caoimh is a software developer at Automattic and WordPress plugin developer. He posts photos at In Photos and can also be found on Twitter.

4 replies on “First Draft: Ready to go!”

WOW. Loads of stuff going on I wouldn’t have realised without seeing the original. Particularly the skyscraper at back of photo, the shrubbery at left side etc.

The bonnets (hoods?) of the cars came out very well.

Thank you for taking the time to show this. As a budding photographer reading through photography books etc it can get depressing seeing all those “perfect” pictures.

Although you realise intellectually that these are the culmination of years of experience, culling of thousands of pictures to select the perfect one and some impressive printing/photoshopping, it can result in setting your own “is it acceptable / throw it in the bin” filter very high.

Out of curiosity, what percentage of shutter releases would you say are worthwhile? In 35mm land the rule was if you got 3 good photos out of a roll of 36 you were doing well.


Thanks guys. John – I’m rarely happy with photos I take. Even the ones I post here are ones I’m not always happy about. Looking back over the last week’s worth of photos I really like the one of Michelle the cat in her box.
Yellow Boxes catches my eye because of the contrasting darkness and the yellow boxes
Little Communion Girl still sticks in my mind because I haven’t done much street photography lately and I’m really happy with that one.

Success rate out of a day’s shooting? That depends on the day. If I’m in town shooting the streets then I’ll be happy with 5 or 6 good shots out of about 50 or 60. Usually I’m carrying a shopping bag in one hand, camera in the other, camera bag on my back and trying to avoid being bumped by the crowds while I watch out for a composition.
If we’ve travelled somewhere, relaxed and I’m taking my time I expect a much higher rate of good shots to bad. I still have dozens of shots of Dingle and Kerry to look through and post which will make a nice distraction from the horrible weather we’ve had over the last few days!

Photoblog warts and all update…

It looks like a few (well two) photobloggers are showing their unaltered pictures after reading my previous post asking photobloggers to show us mere mortals the original photos versus the finished product.

Inphotos and Dancing Shades of Light (I li…

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