The Basic Digital Photo Workflow

The workflow includes every step of the photographic process, from the moment you release the shutter to the moment when you hold a print in your hand or save your image to an archive.

Unfortunately, there is no golden rule for achieving consistently great results but what we aim to do in the course of this book is to present you with a proven workflow that will help you to:

► Improve the quality of your digital images and

► Save time and costly trial runs

We will use the simplest possible methods to help you achieve these aims. We don't intend to turn you into a Photoshop expert, but we do intend to show you how to use the tools you need to process your images effectively -with a little practice, but without too much experimentation. We will be using our own experience along the way, and we will sometimes make value judgements. You should nevertheless consider whether our judgements are relevant to your own situation and experiences.

The overview that follows will help you to better understand the later chapters. The digital photo workflow has three major creative phases:

A) Composition and shooting

B) Digital image processing

C) Presentation (print, slideshow, Web gallery, etc.)

This book is mainly dedicated to discussing phases B and C, and only addresses phase A when technical aspects of composition and shooting affect our approach to phase B. Alongside creativity, technical aspects are highly relevant to the whole process - although if phase A is not successful, these too become irrelevant, in spite of the fact that they themselves contribute to the overall success of phase A! The emphasis of this book is on the technical aspects of the process, but don't forget to be creative along the way.

You can, of course, leave phase C to others (a photo lab or an online print service), but if you do, you will waste another chance to be creative.

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