Digital Outback Photo
- Photography using Digital SLRs

 

Workflow Technique #023

Fred Miranda's Shadow Recovery SRPro Plugin

review note by Uwe Steinmueller

 

 
 
We now also support Photoshop Elements 2.0 Users
 

With the new Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel we expect many new photographers to use Photoshop Elements 2.0 because they get it for free in the box. This has some consequences for our review work:

  • We check now all solutions (plugins and actions) whether they work on Elements or not
  • This market is very price sensitive. A high price solution really needs to be professional to find our attention
 
Why Shadow Recovery?
 

Kind of interesting that just at the moment where we looked into a good shadow recovery solution for Photoshop Elements 2.0 we got aware of Fred's plugin.

Digital files (especially low ISO) can hold quite some useful details in the shadows. We also find that many photos can benefit from revealing more shadow detail. But even in the full version of Photoshop this task can be challenging. Fred's plugin makes your life easier at a very reasonable price and also does not leave the Elements users alone.

 
Note: right now only available for Windows but that will change in a few days.
 
Sample Session
 


Carmel Highlands


100% pixels and only mildly sharpened

We think this shot can benefit from opening up the shadows. We use this time Elements to demonstrate the new plugin (works the same in Photoshop, we mention one minor difference later).

Features:

  • The SRPro plugin supports 12 levels of shadow recovery and we think that 4 is good enough for our image.
  • Reduction type is set to "normal". The other types (there is one more for the PS version) allow also some noise removal in the shadows. We photograph mainly at low ISO and hardly will use the noise reduction feature
  • Opacity Tweak is checked.

If opacity tweak is checked SRPro creates a new layer:


Layers in Elements

This way you can use a stronger level of shadow recovery and then later turn down the opacity to tune the result.


After SRPro at level 4


100% pixels

As you can see SRPro does a very fine job here.

We actually would like to enhance the overall contrast of this image and this would darken the original file even more. If you first use SRPro (maybe even at higher levels) you get more room in the shadows for contrast improvements.

Here is a sample of more contrast after the use of SRPro:


Contrast enhanced version


100% pixels

As you can see the shadows are darker again. But the shadows behave much better with the use of SRPro.

here is a screen shot of SRPro for the full version of Photoshop:

 
We consider Fred Miranda's SRPro an essential tool for the important task of shadow recovery at a very fair price of $19.50.
 
You can buy the SRPro plugin here
 
 
 
 
 

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