Digital Photography Shortens Production Cycle
In the past, the number of digital images that could be shot in a minute was much less than the average one-shot-per-second rate of today’s technology. For a fashion photographer who wanted to shoot digitally, this meant adapting to slower shot speeds. A few years ago, this was painfully obvious when testing a new digital camera. Each shot required a long pause before a new shot was taken, throwing off the timing and, in turn, the magic between the model and the photographer.
For today’s art directors, moving from Polaroid to on-screen review can be both a shock and a savings. Not only are costs reduced, but with remote art-direction technologies, an art director can review the shot from his/her office via the ‘Net. The art director also can enlarge images and view them at different ratios, ensuring they get the look they want as quickly as possible.
Even the stylist is able to get immediate feedback via the monitor, as opposed to waiting the few minutes for the Polaroid to develop. The stylist can enlarge the image to look for styling flaws and make quick corrections before the final image is shot.
Getting the Color Right Still Requires a Pro
Image conversion is not a straightforward process, and color can be affected throughout. For example, different processes require different files. A high dynamic range file (48 bits per pixel) from a Leaf digital camera could become an RGB file (24 bits per pixel), and finally a CMYK file (32 bits per pixel). Each of these conversions to different colorspaces requires a different approach.
Many software packages, including ColorShop, LinoColor and PhotoShop, can help art directors move from a high-resolution RGB image file to a low-res, compressed, color-restricted RGB image file for Web work. Each package requires a great deal of color expertise to maximize results.