Comparing Photo Editing software

Nancy and Tom Lea came over to Portland for the weekend. Tom is a retired professional photographer so I like to pick his brain when we get together. A while back I purchased Adobe Photoshop Elements Editor from the Apple App Store. It’s hella complicated and I gave up on it after a bit. But Tom uses it quite a bit and showed me how to get a lot of use of it pretty easily.

Here are three versions of the same picture. I took this picture of a hamburger at Dea’s In & Out with my Canon PowerShot S100 back in January. I made the mistake of not resetting the white balance after taking pictures in the house. I had the WB set for tungsten lighting but the lighting at the restaurant was flourescent. Here’s the original photo

Original photo; lots of blue tints

I edited the file with Aperture, working on the color, shadows and highlights, as well as blurring Jay’s hand in the background.

After adjustments with Aperture

Much better I think; the french fries that I really wanted to capture look crispier; like they really did at the restaurant. Jay’s hand and the receipt just to the left of the burger have been blurred a bit.

Then I used Adobe Photoshop Elements

I especially like two features of Adobe Photoshop Elements.

  1. The ability to identify something white (or black or gray) on the photo; click on it and adjustment is made to the whole picture
  2. The ability to select a part of the photo and then blur the selection, Or, invert the selection and blur everything not in the selection. 
So, I made those two adjustments, then pulled them back into Aperture. I actually like the color of the middle (Aperture) photo a bit better, but like the blurring in the Elements.
The biggest problem with Elements is that the App store version is only the editor and does not have the Organizer. So, I downloaded a test version of the full Elements. It integrates well with the editor, but I really had a problem navigating photos in the organizer. So, I really worked this morning on figuring out how to transfer pictures from Aperture to Elements and back again. 
Oh, wow. I just noticed that the Elements version transferred back to Aperture is quite a bit smaller. I’ll have to figure that out. I just tried a new way of saving (Export from Aperture instead of drag-and-drop). Here is the result (with just a bit of editing; not a lot of work)

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